Ontario PC leader tries to tackle human trafficking in Sudbury

Ontario PC leader tries to tackle human trafficking in Sudbury - Sudbury - CBC News

Human trafficking becoming a 'bigger issue' and police aren't equipped to deal with it, says Brown


Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown spent some time in Sudbury on Thursday talking with the city's police force about human trafficking.

Women's issues critic for the party, Laurie Scott, was with him.

Brown said Scott has been tirelessly calling on the Liberal government to take action on human trafficking in Ontario because it is a rapidly growing crime.

"Unfortunately it is becoming a bigger issue in Ontario," Brown said.

"There's been attempts to really profit from human trafficking by criminal organizations and entities. And it's something that a lot of police forces aren't equipped currently to deal with."

Brown said much work has to be done to put together a strategy to fight human trafficking.

That work includes co-ordinating law enforcement efforts, as well as increasing funding and resources for police.

Brown said police budgets are already stretched and need support to combat the trade of humans.

He may get the chance to increase Police budgets but he appears to have dissed his bible thumper base.......

Brown has led the party for a little over a year and with the 2018 election and his bid to be premier just two years away, his common refrain is that he is building a "modern, inclusive" PC party.

"It's how I've always felt about the Conservative movement," he said in a recent interview with The Canadian Press.

"Now that I'm in the leadership position I can really advocate the direction of the party...It doesn't matter who you love, it doesn't matter where you're born, the colour of your skin, what god you believe, you have a home in our PC party."

But Brown has to make sure he is not alienating any wing of the party, including the social conservatives, said former Progressive Conservative MPP-turned politics professor Rob Leone.

"He has to be very careful in terms of the policies he chooses, the messages that he sends, to make sure that the people he brought with him through the leadership process are going to stay with him until the election," said Leone, who teaches at Western University.

Brown disputes that social conservatives were the key to his leadership victory it was growing the base and reaching out to diverse communities, he says but they are at least partly laying claim to it.

Charles McVety, president of the Institute for Canadian Values, last month slammed Brown's modernization efforts, saying, "Patrick sold thousands of memberships on the promise to fight LGBT radical sex education."

During the leadership race Brown spoke at a rally protesting the Liberal government's new sex ed curriculum. It included updates such as warnings about online bullying and sexting, but protesters zeroed in on discussions of same-sex marriage, masturbation and gender identity.

"Teachers should teach facts about sex education, not values," Brown said at the February 2015 rally. "Parents teach values."

Patrick Brown's modernization quest