Press Release – Defence Policy Review submission
SENATOR PATTERSON MAKES FORMAL SUBMISSION TO DEFENCE POLICY REVIEW
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Iqaluit, Nunavut – Senator Patterson, Senator for Nunavut, tabled his formal submission to Minister Harjit Sajjan as part of the Defence Policy Review last Friday, July 29, 2016.
“Inuit are an important voice in all Canadian issues and I wanted to ensure that their input on Arctic security and sovereignty were given special attention.”
On July 20, 2016, Senator Patterson hosted a Roundtable in Iqaluit, Nunavut, which brought together key stakeholders including individuals representing the Rangers, the Government of Nunavut, the Department of National Defence, the Canadian Coast Guard, Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, and the Nunavut and Nunatsiavut governments.
Key recommendations were centred around the repositioning of assets in the north to shorten response times for Search and Rescue, a potentially enhanced marine role for Canadian Rangers in the Arctic, and the need for increased support for Rangers in all Inuit regions.
“I tried to make thoughtful, informed recommendations. For instance, Minister Sajjan’s mandate letter directs him to increase the number of Canadian Rangers, but I included in my recommendations that it is important to ensure the proper support for this increased complement is also in place. I also wanted to draw to the Minister’s attention a longstanding and growing consensus that Canadian Rangers in the north should be supported to provide capacity to operate in ocean waters which they know so well.”
Senator Patterson was invited to make a submission during a February 24, 2016 exchange with Minister Sajjan during Question Period in the Senate. The complete submission can be viewed online at http://dennispatterson.ca/defence-policy-review/.
On February 24, 2016, Minister Sajjan participated in Senate Question Period and invited Senator Patterson to make a submission following an exchange of questions surrounding Search and Rescue and the role of Rangers
Minister Sajjan’s mandate letter clearly outlines the need to focus on the north:
“Renew Canada’s focus on surveillance and control of Canadian territory and approaches, particularly our Arctic regions, and increase the size of the Canadian Rangers.”