McGuinty government helps Toronto Police track convicted sex offenders

Archived Release

McGuinty government helps Toronto Police track convicted sex offenders

Ministry of the Solicitor General

Funding for two-year pilot project will improve community safety TORONTO, June 16 - The McGuinty government is building safer, stronger communities by providing funding for a two-year pilot project to help the Toronto Police Service keep closer tabs on convicted sex offenders, Community Safety and Correctional Services Minister Monte Kwinter, said today. "We need to improve their ability to keep close track of sex offenders," Kwinter said. "This funding will allow police to hire more officers to make regular visits to verify that registered offenders are actually living at the addresses they have provided." The $700,000 in funding will also allow police to deal with offenders who aren't complying with the terms of Christopher's Law (Sex Offender Registry), 2000, which established Ontario's sex offender registry. "This funding will truly enhance our efforts to monitor the city's sex offenders," Toronto Police Service Chief Julian Fantino said. "I applaud the McGuinty government for doing the right thing in the best interest of community safety." "This enhanced management system allows for increased protection of the public," Toronto Police Service Board Chair Alan Heisey said. "It provides police with more resources to deal with an extremely important issues in a coordinated, efficient and effective manner." More than 95 per cent of registered sex offenders comply with the requirement to supply accurate information about their whereabouts. This makes Ontario's registry one of the most effective in North America. "This investment is another way our government is delivering real, positive change that will make Ontario communities strong and safe," Kwinter said. Disponible en fran├žais www.mpss.jus.gov.on.ca Backgrounder ------------------------------------------------------------------------- TORONTO'S SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY PILOT PROJECT The Ontario government is funding a two-year pilot project which will allow the Toronto Police Service to track and manage sex offenders better. The Toronto Police Service Bail and Parole Enforcement Unit, responsible for establishing and maintaining the Sex Offender Registry as specified under Christopher's Law, will administer and manage the pilot project. The first installment for the $700,000 pilot project, which starts in September, was paid this week. The funding will allow the Toronto Police Service to add three detective constables to the bail and parole enforcement unit. One detective constable will join the enforcement team while the other two will form an address verification team. These teams will ensure that addresses supplied by about 1,000 offenders are correct, identify offenders who are not complying, locate them and monitor them to ensure they comply in the future. Currently, five police officers (one detective and four detective constables) and one civilian are assigned to the Sex Offender Registry. The detective supervises, directs and trains the team. Two detective constables make up the enforcement team, which was formed in October 2002. The purpose of Christopher's Law and the Ontario Sex Offender Registry established under this legislation is to provide police services across Ontario with information on the whereabouts of sex offenders to help keep communities safe. Once convicted of one of the 12 criteria offenses, offenders are added to the registry.For further information: Contacts: Adrian Dafoe, Minister's Office, (416) 325-4973, (416) 998-2829 (cellular); Bruce O'Neill, Communications Branch, (416) 326-5005