Sask. government looking at possible security changes with introduction of new bill

The Saskatchewan government believes it is being proactive instead of being reactive with the introduction of Bill 70.

The bill would see changes to the security on the legislative grounds and the responsibilities of the sergeant of arms with the possible introduction of a new security team.

Corrections Minister Christine Tell says the object of the bill is to provide more structure. “It’s more jurisdictional that we need it to be in the current environment that we’re facing. The sergeant of arms and the people that work with him for many, many years, they do what they know or think to be the best thing to do.”

The bill would not remove the right to protest but to protect from the actions that may result from the protest according to Tell. “What we are concerned about are the actions outside of the protest.”

Justice Critic Nicole Sarauer says she has no concerns with the current security structure and has no knowledge of any security issues that should warrant a change.

With regards to the proposed Bill 70, Sarauer doesn’t want to see modifications to it but rather she would like to see the bill scrapped. She says an in-camera discussion including the house leaders to discuss the possible security changes that need to be made.

The security of the legislative building needs to be independent according to Sarauer and that if this bill goes through, the provincial government would be able to potentially allow certain protests to take place and block others.

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