Ministry overview

Ministry’s vision

The Ministry of the Solicitor General (the ministry) is committed to ensuring that all communities in Ontario are kept safe. To fulfill its mandate, the ministry’s responsibilities are divided into three distinct parts: community safety, correctional services, and emergency management.

As part of its community safety mandate, the ministry is responsible for establishing provincewide police standards, police oversight and supporting crime prevention initiatives at local and provincial levels. The ministry maintains the physical and economic security of Ontario by coordinating public safety initiatives among municipal, police, and fire. It also oversees the governance and licensing of private security guards and investigators and is directly responsible for Ontario’s animal welfare enforcement system.

Within the correctional services’ mandate, the ministry operates a safe, effective and accountable adult corrections system that includes correctional facilities and probation and parole offices across the province. The ministry is responsible for the safety and well-being of correctional services staff and those on remand or serving a custodial or community sentence.

Emergency Management Ontario’s (EMO) mandate includes the coordination of prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery strategies which maximize the safety, security, and resiliency of Ontarians. EMO takes a proactive approach to monitor and assist ministries, municipalities and First Nations communities with their emergency management programs as well preparing for, and coordinating provincial response when requested/required to, for an increasingly complex number of predictable and unpredictable emergencies in Ontario. In addition, EMO leads the coordination of Ontario’s emergency response to declarations of emergency orders such as those enacted during the COVID‑19 pandemic. Effective 2022–23, EMO responsibility transferred from the Ministry of the Solicitor General to the Treasury Board Secretariat.

Organizations within the ministry that contribute to community safety include the Ontario Provincial Police, the Office of the Chief Coroner, the Ontario Forensic Pathology Service, the Office of the Fire Marshal, EMO and Correctional Services Oversight and Investigations. The ministry also delivers training for first responders and frontline staff through the Correctional Services Recruitment & Training Centre and Ontario Police College and develops training courses and operates live mobile fire training units for local fire services.

Ministry’s vision — COVID‑19 response

During an emergency situation, such as the March 17, 2020, January 12, 2021, and April 7, 2021 declarations of emergencyfootnote 1 made by the province during the COVID‑19 pandemic, the ministry is involved in the development and execution of all emergency orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, and works across government to keep the public updated on emergency developments while coordinating an effective response.

Ministry contribution to priority outcomes

The ministry is dedicated to making Ontario a safer place to live, work and raise a family. The ministry is focused on five key priority areas and the initiatives outlined in the Annual Report support these priorities:

  • to build safer communities by ensuring police have the tools, resources and supports they need to address provincial priorities such as combatting guns and gang violence, human trafficking and intimate partner abuse
  • to build better communities through initiatives such as encouraging volunteerism and modernized animal protection enforcement model
  • to ensure that our communities are prepared in case of a natural or other emergency and that public safety infrastructure is resilient
  • to modernize Ontario’s justice system, and transform the adult correctional system
  • to improve mental health awareness and wellness supports for public safety personnel such as police, fire, paramedics, coroners and correctional staff

Legislation

Legislation administered by Ministry of the Solicitor General:

Ammunition Regulation Act, 1994
Regulates the sale of ammunition. The act generally requires that purchasers be a minimum of 18 years old and requires that businesses keep certain records.

Anatomy Act
Allows the General Inspector (Chief Coroner) to send bodies, which have been donated or are unclaimed, to universities or colleges for educational purposes.

Christopher’s Law (Sex Offender Registry), 2000
Requires sex offenders who are residents of Ontario to register with police upon conviction and on an annual basis and at any time that they change their address. The ministry is required to maintain the registry and provide access to the police.

Coroners Act
Provides for investigations by coroners into the circumstances surrounding certain deaths. The act sets out the circumstances under which an inquest will be held and the procedures for holding an inquest.

Correctional Services Staff Recognition Week Act, 2016
Proclaims the week commencing on the first Monday in May in each year as Correctional Services Staff Recognition Week.

Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act
Addresses both emergency preparedness and emergency response at municipal and provincial levels. The act requires municipalities and ministries to develop emergency programs and formulate emergency plans.

Fire Protection and Prevention Act, 1997
Governs fire safety in Ontario and sets fire protection requirements for municipalities. The act establishes the Office of the Fire Marshal to oversee the operation of fire departments.

Firefighters’ Memorial Day Act, 2000
Establishes the first Sunday in October as Firefighters’ Memorial Day to honour firefighters.

First Responders Day Act, 2013
Establishes May 1 in each year as First Responders Day.

Forensic Laboratories Act, 2018
Imposes an accreditation requirement with respect to the carrying out of a laboratory test in a prescribed category that is requested for the purpose of legal proceedings, for some other legal purpose or pursuant to an order of a court or other lawful authority.

Hawkins Gignac Act (Carbon Monoxide Safety), 2013
Establishes the annual carbon monoxide awareness week.

Imitation Firearms Regulation Act, 2000
Regulates the sale and other transfers of imitation firearms and deactivated firearms, and prohibits the purchase and sale of starter pistols capable of being adapted for use as firearms.

Interprovincial Policing Act
Provides a framework for the exercise of police powers in Ontario by police officers from other provinces. Reciprocal legislation in other provinces permits Ontario police to exercise powers in those provinces.

Keeping Ontario Open for Business Act, 2022
Establishes prohibitions for persons impeding certain transportation infrastructure if the impediment disrupts ordinary economic activity or interferes with the safety, health or well-being of members of the public. The protected transportation infrastructure will be international borders, international airports prescribed in regulation, and other transportation infrastructure prescribed in regulation that is of significance to international trade. Provides police officers and the Registrar of Motor Vehicles new tools to deal with these impediments, including powers related to license and plate suspensions.

Mandatory Gunshot Wounds Reporting Act, 2005
Requires hospitals that treat a person for gunshot wound(s) to disclose this fact to the local police.

Ministry of Correctional Services Act
Establishes the legislative framework for correctional services in Ontario and governs matters relating to the detention and release from custody of remanded and sentenced inmates. The act provides for community supervision services and establishes the Ontario Parole Board. The powers and duties of the Minister of Correctional Services are to be exercised by the Solicitor General, by Order in Council.

Ministry of the Solicitor General Act
Establishes the Ministry of the Solicitor General.

Missing Persons Act, 2018
Establishes measures to assist members of a police service in locating a missing person in the absence of a criminal investigation. Also allows officers to apply for an order, or make an urgent demand, for the production of records to assist in locating a missing person or a search warrant to facilitate a search for a missing person.

Pawnbrokers Act
Provides for the licensing of pawnbrokers and for the collection and production of information regarding items pledged. The act is to be repealed on a day named by proclamation.

Police Record Checks Reform Act, 2015
Sets out a process and exceptions governing requests for searches of the Canadian Police Information Centre databases, or other police databases, in connection with screening an individual for certain purposes.

Police Services Act
Provides the legislative framework for policing in Ontario. This act requires municipalities to decide on the method of providing adequate and effective policing in their communities. This act also creates the Ontario Provincial Police, the Special Investigations Unit, the Ontario Civilian Police Commission, the Independent Police Review Director and the Ontario Police Arbitration Commission. The Community Safety and Policing Act, 2019 received Royal Assent in March 2019, and once in force, will replace the Police Services Act.

Private Security and Investigative Services Act, 2005
Regulates private investigators and security guards. The act replaced the Private Investigators and Security Guards Act.

Provincial Animal Welfare Services Act
Sets out inspection, enforcement and appeal procedures for the prevention of cruelty to animals and deals with animals in distress. The act also continues the Animal Care Review Board.

Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020
A temporary act that enabled emergency orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act relating to COVID‑19 to be extended on a 30-day basis and, in some circumstances, amended. The powers under this act to extend orders expired on March 28, 2022 and all orders under the act were revoked by April 27, 2022.

Security for Electricity Generating Facilities and Nuclear Facilities Act, 2014
Sets out various powers for peace officers in respect of restricted access to electricity and nuclear generating facilities.

Key performance indicators

The ministry is committed to ensuring Ontarians are safe in their communities by focusing on the following performance indicators:

  • The ministry is committed to addressing the increase in violent crime in Ontario. In 2020, the Violent Crime Severity Index (VCSI) was 69.5. The VCSI has been increasing steadily over the last several year pre-pandemic, peaking in 2019. Between 2015 and 2019, there was a 25.7% increase in the VCSI in Ontario, suggesting that violent crime has become more severe. This was followed by a 7.9% decrease in the VCSI in 2020. This decline can be attributed to COVID‑19 restrictions and stay-at-home orders. The trend for the police-reported crime rate in Ontario has followed a similar pattern, increasing steadily until 2019 (an increase of 13 % between 2015 and 2019), followed by an 11% decrease in 2020. The Ontario’s police-reported crime rate was reported at 4,044.2 per 100,000 population in 2020. Similar to the VCSI, the decline in the police-reported crime rate in 2020 can be attributed to the restrictions and stay-at-home orders during the COVID‑19 pandemic.
  • The ministry is committed to reducing gun and gang violence in Ontario. In 2020, there were 94 gun-related homicides in Ontario. This was a decrease of 6% from 2019. There was a similar trend in gang-related homicidesfootnote 2 with 52 victims in 2020, a decrease of 13.3% from 2019. Since 2015, there has been a 91.8% increase in gun-related homicides and a 147.6% increase in gang-related homicides. Firearms are often involved in gang-related homicides. The proportion of gang-related homicides in Canada that were committed with a firearm declined to its lowest level over the last 10 years, from 83% of all gang-related homicides in 2019 to 72% in 2020footnote 3. The recent 2020 decreases in gun and gang-related homicides can be attributed to the restrictions and stay-at-home orders in place during the COVID‑19 pandemic.
  • Ontario is committed to reducing the rate of re-offendingfootnote 4 among those released from custody and community supervision. Data reported in 2020–21 shows that 33.7% of offenders who were released from custodyfootnote 5 and 20.4% of offenders who were released from community supervision in 2018–19 re-offended within the following two yearsfootnote 6. The percent of re-offenders declined by 1.3% for those released from custody and by 1.9% for those released from community supervision the previous year (2019–2020). Since 2016–17, those released from custody who have reoffended has declined by 2.2% and those released from community supervision has declined by 2.7%footnote 7.

Ministry programs

Community safety

Public safety

The Public Safety Division works with policing, municipal, Indigenous and community partners to promote community safety and well-being. Activities include: scientific analysis in the Centre of Forensic Sciences; oversight of the private security industry; development and amendment of policing guidelines, standards, legislation and regulations; expert training delivery and supports for police and other public safety personnel; administration of community safety and policing grants; implementing and supporting community safety and well-being planning across the province; supporting intelligence-led operations; management of provincial appointments and oversight of the Constable Selection System tools; delivery of the Ontario Major Case Management system; administration and enforcement of the Provincial Animal Welfare Services (PAWS) Act, including the promotion of animal welfare; operational policy development and support for First Nations policing, including the administration of agreements and engagement with First Nations communities on policing issues.

Ontario Provincial Police (OPP)

Under the leadership of the commissioner of the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), the OPP provides direct frontline policing services in hundreds of municipalities and First Nations communities throughout the province using Ontario’s Mobilization and Engagement Model. The OPP investigates provincewide and cross-jurisdictional crimes including complex fraud and organized criminal activity. In addition, the OPP patrols provincial highways and is responsible for many of the waterways and trail systems in the province. The OPP maintains specialized provincial registries, including the Violent Crimes Linkages Analysis System, human trafficking and the Ontario Sex Offender Registry. Oversight of provincial strategies such as child exploitation, serious fraud and biker enforcement are also responsibilities of the OPP. Included as part of its provincial mandate, the OPP also investigates anti-terrorism, cybercrime, provides emergency services support, is responsible for security for high profile international events, and delivers specialized security and protection services for the Government of Ontario throughout the province.

Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management (OFMEM)

The Office of the Fire Marshal (OFM) carries out its legislated mandate as set out in the Fire Protection and Prevention Act. OFM is led by the Fire Marshal of Ontario. OFM works to minimize the loss of life and property from fire in Ontario by supporting municipalities, fire services and other public safety agencies to meet the needs of their communities, including public education, fire prevention, firefighting, fire protection, training and fire investigation. OFM advises the government on public fire safety, policy, standards and legislation relating to fire prevention and protection, and investigates the cause, origin and circumstances of any fire/explosion that might have caused a loss of life, serious injury or damage to property.

Emergency Management Ontario (EMO) carries out its legislated mandate as set out in the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act. Leadership for EMO is provided through the Commissioner of Emergency Management and Chief, Emergency Management Ontario who reports to the Commissioner of Emergency Management. EMO coordinates prevention, mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery strategies which maximize the safety, security, and resiliency of Ontarians. EMO is responsible for monitoring, coordinating, and assisting in the development of emergency management programs by ministries and municipalities and for ensuring that those programs are coordinated in so far as possible with emergency management programs and emergency plans of the Government of Canada and its agencies and Indigenous partners. EMO is also responsible for the coordination of provincial emergency management when provincial support is required. Additionally, EMO provides support to municipalities who voluntarily enhance their emergency management program by developing Continuity of Operations Plans. EMO maintains the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre to ensure 24/7 situational awareness and support for actual or potential incidents impacting Ontario. Emergency Management Ontario works with non-governmental organizations, Indigenous partners, industry partners, other jurisdictions in Canada, including the federal government, and in neighbouring states to support broader emergency management activities. Effective 2022–23, EMO responsibility transferred from the Ministry of the Solicitor General to the Treasury Board Secretariat.

Office of the Chief Coroner and Ontario Forensic Pathology Service

Ontario’s death investigation system is delivered in a partnership between the Office of the Chief Coroner (OCC) and the Ontario Forensic Pathology Service (OFPS). The OCC and OFPS have a shared mission to provide high quality death investigation that supports the administration of justice, the prevention of premature death and is responsive to Ontario’s diverse needs.

The OCC is responsible for conducting death investigations and inquests in accordance with provisions of the Coroners Act. Investigations are typically conducted in sudden and unexpected deaths in order to answer five questions (who, where, when, how and by what means) and to determine if an inquest should be conducted where not mandated by the Coroners Act. Investigations and inquests may result in recommendations that, if implemented, may reduce the likelihood of further deaths thereby enhancing public safety. The OCC also provides reporting, monitoring and oversight on all provincial medical assistance in dying cases, including data collection in accordance with federal legislation.

The OFPS is legislatively responsible for providing medico-legal autopsy services pursuant to the Coroners Act. The OFPS, in partnership with the University of Toronto, operates an accredited training program for forensic pathologists in Canada. The OFPS also provides accredited medical training for many medical students, pathology and imaging residents, pathology assistants, undergraduate students and other learners from the University of Toronto, Western University and other universities in Canada and the United States. OFPS supports the education and capacity development of professionals working in the death investigation system in Canada and internationally.

Inspectorate of Policing

The Inspectorate of Policing (Inspectorate) monitors and provides strategic advice to stakeholders and partners on the delivery of policing in accordance with the legislative framework for policing in Ontario. The Inspectorate will fulfill the duties of the Inspector General of Policing established under the Community Safety and Policing Act, 2019, which received Royal Assent but is not yet in-force. Through a robust system of advising, monitoring, inspecting, investigating, and reporting on the delivery of policing in Ontario, the Inspectorate will promote excellence, equity, and public confidence in policing, supporting those responsible for the delivery of policing.

Correctional Services

The mandate of correctional services is to provide care, custody and control of inmates who are remanded and/or serving a custodial sentence (up to two years less a day) and to provide supervision of offenders serving sentences in the community on terms of probation, conditional sentence and Ontario parole. Key services and programs offered by the ministry include staff training and rehabilitative programming, treatment and services designed to help offenders achieve changes in attitude and behaviour to support successful reintegration into the community and enhance public safety.

Correctional services has four divisions: Institutional Services, Community Services, Operational Support and Correctional Services Oversight and Investigations. Authority for correctional services is provided under both provincial and federal legislation including the Ministry of Correctional Services Act, Provincial Offences Act and the Criminal Code of Canada.

Ministry Administration, Policy and Justice Technology Services

Ministry administration

The ministry’s core businesses are supported by corporate services that provide leadership, direction, planning and governance. Ministry Administration activities include the Solicitor General’s Office including the Parliamentary Assistant’s Office, Deputy Solicitor General Community Safety’s Office, Deputy Solicitor General Correctional Services’ Office, Office of the Deputy Solicitor General and Commissioner of Emergency Management, Associate Deputy Minister’s Office, Provincial Security Advisor’s Office, Modernization Division, Office of the Chief Administrative Officer, Communications Branch, Legal Services Branch, Business and Financial Planning Branch, Procurement and Business Improvement Branch, Human Resources Strategic Business Unit, Facilities and Capital Planning Branch and the COVID‑19 Vaccine Distribution Secretariat. The program also shares justice sector services for freedom of information, French language services, and internal audit.

Justice Technology Services Cluster

The Justice Technology Services Cluster delivers highly integrated and complex Information & Information Technology (I&IT) services and solutions and reliable and responsive operational support. This is in alignment with the Enterprise Technology Strategy that enables and supports business priorities and modernization of the justice sector ministries (Ministry of the Solicitor General, Ministry of the Attorney General, including their respective provincial agencies and Youth Justice Services Division, Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services). Key support is provided through development, implementation and maintenance of technology solutions and critical services, liaising with other service providers, as well as information management and planning.

Strategic Policy, Research and Innovation

The division is responsible for leading policy development to support ministry and government priorities. Key functions include the development of evidence-based policy, regulations and legislation and the coordination of justice sector intergovernmental activities.

Emergency Services Telecommunications

Emergency Services Telecommunications (EST) provides leadership for emergency services telecommunications services. EST delivers high availability, critical communications services for emergency services across the province. EST supports end-to-end public safety through delivering the government mobile communications network and supporting the Next Generation 9-1-1 and Public Safety Broadband initiatives.

Ministry programs — COVID‑19 response

The ministry is responsible for emergency management and is the province’s coordinator for emergency response situations such as the COVID‑19 pandemic, including:

  • responsibility for legislation relating to emergency management including the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act which establishes the province’s framework for management of emergencies
  • responsibility for the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020, which was created to enable the ongoing management of health and safety measures that were necessary to respond to the COVID‑19 pandemic

In addition, the ministry must look after the health and safety of ministry staff, most of whom serve on the front lines of the province’s response to the COVID‑19 pandemic to keep Ontario’s communities safe. In a pandemic environment, the ministry coordinated the evacuation of First Nation communities during the worst forest fire season in over 50 years in 2021, working with Indigenous partners and the health sector to design and implement culturally appropriate COVID‑19 infection prevention and control protocols to protect the health and safety of First Nation evacuees, and ministry field staff.

Highlights of 2021–22 results

The ministry is building stronger and safer communities by supporting the public safety needs of the people of Ontario.

Highlights of the ministry’s 2021–22 achievements are categorized as follows:

Responding to COVID‑19

  • launched Mobile Vaccine Units in hot spot workplaces
  • rolled out GO-VAXX — vaccine clinics on wheels
  • additional measures to slow the spread of the Omicron variant
  • re-entered a modified ‘Step Two’ of Ontario’s provincial re-opening plan
  • supported Ontario’s gradual ease of public health measures
  • coordinated the development and extension of orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020

Partnered to combat human trafficking and intimate partner abuse

  • zero tolerance for human trafficking
  • supported victims of intimate partner violence and human trafficking

Building strong, supportive and safe communities

  • helped to encourage volunteerism
  • expanded CCTV surveillance to deter criminal activity
  • helped communities to address cybercrime
  • reimbursed northern municipalities for fire protection services
  • built on the community reintegration strategy to improve release planning
  • strengthened frontline corrections support

Investing in mental health and addictions crisis response

  • expanded mobile crisis teams
  • OPP crisis call diversion program

Digitally connecting Ontario’s justice sector

  • new digital technology to support a more efficient justice system

Emergency management

  • coordinated the evacuation of First Nation communities in a pandemic environment during Ontario’s worst forest fire season in over 50 years in 2021
  • supported increased provincewide emergency management preparedness and resiliency

Supporting Ontario’s frontlines

  • improved access to best-in-class mental health supports for first responders
  • mobile options to meet firefighter training needs
  • expanded mental health supports for the OPP
  • expanded support for the mental health and wellness of Ontario’s public safety personnel

Investing in new policing infrastructure

  • implemented leading-edge policing equipment and technology to meet the complex demands of modern police operations
  • leading-edge facilities provided officers with the tools they need to keep communities safe

Investing in correctional infrastructure

  • further protection to prevent contraband entering correctional facilities
  • new infrastructure will transform correctional services
  • addressed capacity challenges and expanded mental health supports in correctional services

Keeping Ontario open for business

  • new measures to protect international border crossings

Ministry organization chart

This is a text version of an organizational chart for the Ministry of the Solicitor General as of June 1, 2022. The chart shows the following hierarchical structure with the top level assigned to the Solicitor General.

  • Solicitor General — Sylvia Jones
    • Provincial Agencies
      • Constable Joe MacDonald Public Safety Officers Survivors Scholarship Fund — Patricia Kirkwood, Chair
      • Fire Marshal’s Public Fire Safety Council — Jonathan Pegg, Chair
      • Ontario Police Arbitration Commission — Sig Walter, Chair
      • Death Investigation Oversight Council — Edward Then, Chair
    • Deputy Solicitor General, Community Safety — Mario Di Tommaso
      Executive Advisor - Mark Okada
      • Ontario Provincial Police — T. Carrique, Commissioner
        • Field Operations — C. Harkins, Deputy Commissioner
          • Healthy Workplace Bureau — Dr. V. Lee, Chief Psychologist
        • Investigations and Organized Crime — C. Cox, Deputy Commissioner
        • Traffic Safety and Operational Support — R. DiMarco, Deputy Commissioner
          • Information Technology and Telecommunication Services — M. Johnston, Director
        • Corporate Services — M. Silverthorne, Provincial Commander
          • Human Resources Section — M. Clark, Director
          • Business Management — M. McRae, Acting Bureau Commander
        • Respect Inclusion and Leadership — R. Veerappan, Director
      • Office of the Chief Coroner — Dr. D. Huyer, Chief Coroner
      • Ontario Forensic Pathology Service — Dr. M. Pollanen, Chief Pathologist
        • Administration and Business Services — T. Fernandes, Director (this position also reports to the Chief Coroner and the Fire Marshal)
      • Public Safety — R. Stubbings, Assistant Deputy Minister
        • External Relations — M. Longo, Director
        • Centre of Forensic Sciences — A. Peaire, Director
        • Chief Inspector, Animal Welfare — P. Milne, Chief Inspector
          • Animal Welfare Services — G. Fthenos, Director and Deputy Chief Inspector
        • Private Security and Investigative Services — C. McLinden, Director
        • First Nation Policing — A. Jones, Acting Director
        • Criminal Intelligence Service Ontario — S. Clegg, Director
        • Ontario Police College — P. Hebert, Director
      • Office of the Provincial Security Advisor — C. Letang, Provincial Security Advisor
        • Provincial Security — C. Unfried, Deputy Provincial Security Advisor
      • Office of the Fire Marshal — T. Beckett, Acting Fire Marshal
        • Standards, Training and Public Education — John McBeth, Acting Director
        • Field and Advisory Services — T. Beckett, Acting Deputy Fire Marshal
        • Fire Investigation Services — N. Macdonald-Duncan, Director
        • Administration and Business Services — T. Fernandes, Director
      • Inspectorate of Policing — K. Weatherill, Acting Inspector General
        • Director, Centre for Data Intelligence and Innovation — M. Lloyd
        • Deputy Inspector General, Inspections, Investigations, Audit and Compliance Management — K. Weatherill
    • Deputy Solicitor General, Correctional Services — Karen Ellis
      Executive Advisor — Wes Iqbal
      • Modernization Division — C. Johns, Acting Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Transformation Services — A. Yong, Acting Director
        • Innovation, Data and Technology Advancement — S. Singh, Acting Director
        • Criminal Justice Transformation — S. Jones, Acting Director
        • Analytics — C. Hagyard, Acting Director
      • Institutional Services — D. Pitfield, Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Institutional Services — K. Sawicki — Acting Executive Director
          • Eastern Region — T. Gunton, Acting Regional Director
          • Central Region — R. Warikoo, Acting Regional Director
          • Western Region — K. Fitzgerald, Regional Director
          • Northern Region — D. Houghton, Regional Director
          • Toronto Region — D. Wilson, Acting Regional Director
        • Institutional Operations — S. Mohamoud — Director
      • Community Services — M. Watson, Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Eastern Region — T. Robertson, Regional Director
        • Central Region — D. Kasias, Regional Director
        • Western Region — B. Forbes, Regional Director
        • Northern Region — S. Mitchell, Regional Director
      • Correctional Services Oversight and Investigations — R. Rose, Chief
    • Deputy Solicitor General, Emergency Management — Bernard Derible
      Executive Advisor — Colleen Waddell
      • Chief, Emergency Management — T. Khawja, Assistant Deputy Minister
      • Operations and Response — R. Lazarus, Director
      • Emergency Management Planning and Programs — C. McGlade, Director
      • Nuclear and Radiological Planning and Response — R. Reid, Director
    • Transition Emergency Management Ontario — L. Priest, Assistant Deputy Minister
    • Emergency Management Strategy, Monitoring and Intelligence — H. Levecque, Assistant Deputy Minister
      • Emergency Management Policy and Governance — M. Astill, Director
    • The following are shared services between Community Safety, Correctional Services and Emergency Management:
    • Acting Associate Deputy Minister — M. Duran-Schneider
      • Operational Support — K. Palmer, Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Program Design and Implementation Branch — M. Zaffino, Director
        • Corporate Health Care and Wellness — M. Mayoh, Director
        • Corrections Policy, Planning and Service Delivery — A. Doobay, Director
        • Corrections Centre for Professional Advancement & Training — K. Michalicka, Director
        • Service Management & Oversight — I. Sykes, Director
        • Community Reintegration and Program Transformation — N. Alexander, Acting Director
      • Corporate Services — S. Salazar, Acting Assistant Deputy Minister/Chief Administrative Officer
        • Human Resources Strategic Business Unit — B. Nowak, Acting Director
        • Business and Financial Planning — N. Insanally, Acting Director
        • Procurement and Business Improvement — P. Amodeo, Acting Director
        • Facilities and Capital Planning — R. Greene, Director
      • Emergency Services Telecommunications — J. Stevenson, Acting Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Next Generation and Broadband Infrastructure — P. Thompson, Acting Director
        • Government Mobile Communications — C. Whaley, Head
      • Vaccine Distribution Secretariat
        • Project Management — M. Astill, Acting Director
        • Secretariat Coordination and Operational Liaison — A. Langley, Acting Director
    • The following are shared services between Community Safety and Correctional Services:
      • Communications Branch — S. McGetrick, Director, M. Szymczak, Acting Director
      • Legal Services, B. Loewen, Director
      • Audit Services — E. Cotter, Acting Director
      • Strategic Policy, Research and Innovation — M. Kittmer, Acting Assistant Deputy Minister
        • Community Safety and Animal Welfare Policy — M. Kittmer, Director
        • Community Safety and Corrections Policy — K. Watson, Acting Director — M. Kittmer, Director
        • Community Safety and Intergovernmental Policy — S. Caldwell, Director
      • Justice Technology Services — C. Emile, Assistant Deputy Minister/Chief Information Officer
        • MAG Solutions — D. Thompson, Acting Head
        • SolGen Solutions — C. Walpole, Head
        • Service Management — T. Al-Shumari, Acting Head
        • Common Cluster Solutions — S. Fournier, Head
        • Cluster Business Services — S. Mahimkar-Patrick, Director
        • Criminal Justice Digital Design — V. Pawar, Acting Director

Provincial agencies

The ministry is affiliated with the following independent agencies:

Ontario Police Arbitration Commission (the Commission) — non-board governed agency

The commission administers the conciliation and mediation-arbitration processes under the Labour Relations Part VIII of the Police Services Act. The Commission’s main function involves the appointment of conciliators and arbitrators to assist police associations and police services boards in the resolution of disputes arising out of the negotiations and administration of their collective agreements. The Commission is a neutral body and does not become involved in the issues between the parties and does not influence the outcome of conciliation or arbitration.

Death Investigation Oversight Council (DIOC) — advisory agency

DIOC is an independent oversight council committed to serving Ontarians by ensuring that death investigation services are provided in an effective and accountable manner. As an advisory agency, DIOC provides oversight of the death investigation system in Ontario, supports quality death investigations, and, through its complaints committee, administers a public complaints process. In addition, DIOC provides advice and makes recommendations to the chief coroner regarding subsection 26(2) reviews, including whether or not a discretionary inquest should be called.

Constable Joe MacDonald Public Safety Officers’ Survivors Scholarship Fund Committee — advisory agency

The committee reviews applications submitted to the Constable Joe MacDonald Public Safety Officers’ Survivors Scholarship Fund and makes funding recommendations to the Solicitor General. The committee also advises on the administration of the scholarship fund. The scholarship is available to spouses and children of public safety officers who have died in the line of duty. The scholarship pays for the cost of post-secondary education, up to five years, including tuition, textbooks and eligible living expenses.

Fire Marshal’s Public Fire Safety Council (the council) — board-governed operational enterprise

Established in 1993, the council promotes fire safety and public education through sponsorships and partnerships with various groups and individuals interested in public safety. The council is a non-profit corporation without share capital under Part XI of the Fire Protection and Prevention Act, 1997, and is comprised of a Board of Directors and other members of the council who are representatives from fire services, industry and the public. The Fire Marshal is the Chair of the Council. The council forms partnerships, raises and distributes funds, and endorses programs and products necessary to further the development of Ontario as a fire-safe community.

Financial summary of ministry provincial agencies
Expenditure2022–23
(estimates)
$
2021–22
(interim actuals)
$
Ontario Police Arbitration Commission452,100467,704
Death Investigation Oversight Council440,500722,557
Sub-total Vote 7 (Agencies, Boards and Commissions)892,6001,190,261
Fire Marshal’s Public Fire Safety Council1,000134
Constable Joe MacDonald Public Safety Officers’ Survivors Scholarship Fund400,000152,031
Total1,293,6001,342,426

2022–23 Strategic plan

Table 1: Ministry planned expenditures 2022–23 ($M)
COVID‑19 approvalsnull
Other operating3,418.9
Other capital97.5
Total3,516.4

Note: ministry planned expenditures include statutory appropriations and consolidations.
Numbers may not add due to rounding.

Ministry budget 2022–23, operating and capital

Ontario Provincial Police: $1,428.6M

40.6%

Correctional services program: $1,188.1M

33.8%

Public safety division: $497.7M

14.2%

Emergency services telecommunications: $271.0M

7.7%

Accommodations and leasing: $114.0M

3.2%

Emergency planning and management: $97.4M

2.8%

Justice Technology Services: $73.8M

2.1%

Statutory: $73.2M

2.1%

Other services: $50.2M

1.4%

Inspectorate: $9.9M

0.3%

Consolidation: ($287.6M)

−8.2%

Note: ministry budget excludes capital assets and operating assets.
Numbers may not add due to rounding.

Detailed financial information

Table 2: Combined Operating and Capital Summary by Vote

Operating expense
Votes/ProgramsEstimates
2022–23 ($)
Change from Estimates
2021–22
($)
Per cent %Estimates
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Interim Actuals
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Actuals
2020–21footnote 8 ($)
Ministry administration154,705,5008,934,3006.1145,771,200241,288,051175,357,681
Public Safety Division469,787,10089,782,20023.6380,004,900384,647,427357,477,098
Ontario Provincial Police1,406,477,500132,555,90010.41,273,891,6001,328,286,5531,223,412,322
Correctional Services program1,099,723,30022,373,4002.11,077,349,9001,122,183,9591,095,954,367
Justice Technology Services Program73,788,000-2,737,900-3.676,525,90060,746,11850,992,501
Agencies, Boards and Commissions892,600nullnull892,6001,190,261777,079
Emergency Planning and Management97,440,40014,144,80017.083,295,600111,433,47693,883,820
Strategic Policy, Research and Innovation6,745,300133,5002.06,661,8007,172,4475,452,584
Inspectorate9,944,9004,599,40086.05,345,5004,056,0391,746,407
Anti-Racism Directoratenullnullnullnull1,279,163null
Emergency services telecommunications271,023,300126,119,90087.0144,903,40047,724,80039,597,540
Total Operating Expense to be Voted3,590,497,900395,905,50012.43,194,592,4003,310,008,2963,044,651,399
Statutory Appropriations116,014-16,173-12.2132,18716,491,44118,793,521
Ministry Total Operating Expense3,590,613,914395,889,32712.43,194,724,5873,326,499,7373,063,444,920
Consolidation Adjustment — Hospitals-23,003,000-1,867,6008.8-21,135,400-23,282,900-22,204,896
Consolidation Adjustment — School Boardsnullnullnullnullnull-921,150
Consolidation Adjustment — Collegesnullnullnullnullnull-41,823
Consolidation Adjustments — General Real Estate Portfolio-145,482,70034,228,300-19.0-179,711,000-157,888,100-158,308,842
Consolidation Adjustments — Ontario Infrastructure and Lands Corporation-3,270,00020,776,300-86.4-24,046,300-100,000null
Total Consolidations-171,755,70053,137,000-23.6-224,892,700-181,251,000(181,476,711
Total Including Consolidations3,418,858,214449,026,32715.12,969,831,8873,145,248,7372,881,968,209
Operating assests
Votes/ProgramsEstimates
2022–23 ($)
Change from Estimates
2021–22
($)
Per cent %Estimates
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Interim Actuals
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Actuals
2020–21footnote 8 ($)
Ministry administrationnull-1,000-100.01,000nullnull
Public Safety Division2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Ontario Provincial Police2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Correctional Services2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Justice Technology Services program5,002,000-2,000,000-28.67,002,0009,149,0003,858,729
Agencies, Boards and Commissions2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Emergency Planning and Management2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Strategic Policy, Research and Innovation2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Inspectorate2,000nullnull2,000nullnull
Emergency services telecommunications2,302,00094,4004.32,207,600null1,576,773
Total Operating Assets to be Voted7,318,000-1,906,600-20.79,224,6009,149,0005,435,502
Capital expense
Votes/ProgramsEstimates
2022–23 ($)
Change from Estimates
2021–22
($)
Per cent %Estimates
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Interim Actuals
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Actuals
2020–21footnote 8 ($)
Ministry administration1,776,0001,073,400152.8702,600617,2001,175,065
Public Safety Division27,889,600674,5002.527,215,10025,366,00022,408,814
Ontario Provincial Police22,200,700-3,970,200-15.226,170,90024,427,40014,805,361
Correctional Services88,384,4004,182,4005.084,202,00073,612,70056,145,772
Justice Technology Services1,000nullnull1,000nullnull
Emergency Planning and Management1,000nullnull1,000nullnull
Strategic Policy, Research and Innovation1,000nullnull1,000nullnull
Total Capital Expense to be Voted140,253,7001,960,1001.4138,293,600124,023,30094,535,012
Statutory Appropriations73,122,80048,172,300193.124,950,50019,863,20017,170,183
Ministry Total Capital Expense213,376,50050,132,40030.7163,244,100143,886,500111,705,195
Consolidation Adjustment — General Real Estate Portfolio-102,135,900-60,729,100146.7-41,406,800-107,261,800-75,872,845
Consolidation Adjustment — Ontario Infrastructure and Lands Corporation-13,699,200-13,699,200100.0nullnull-2,054,089
Consolidated Adjustment — Schoolsnullnullnullnullnull-1,716,798
Total Consolidations-115,835,100-74,428,300179.7-41,406,800-107,261,800-79,643,732
Total Including Consolidations97,541,400-24,295,900-19.9121,837,30036,624,70032,061,463
Capital assets
Votes/ProgramsEstimates
2022–23 ($)
Change from Estimates
2021–22
($)
Per cent %Estimates
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Interim Actuals
2021–22footnote 8 ($)
Actuals
2020–21footnote 8 ($)
Ministry Administration1,000nullnull1,000nullnull
Public Safety Division2,246,500320,50016.61,926,0001,827,000942,606
Ontario Provincial Police548,133,90017,825,00049.136,308,90036,818,70047,195,172
Correctional Services194,790,60044,212,70029.4150,577,900102,178,20015,078,478
Justice Technology Services 10,102,1001,126,80013.88,875,30039,5501,027,724
Emergency Planning and Management1,090,000950,000678.6140,0001,195,0002,943,098
Strategic Policy, Research and Innovationnull-1,000-100.01,000nullnull
Emergency Services Telecommunications396,004,8003,850,4001.0392,154,40021,414,20035,441,520
Total Capital Assets to be Voted658,368,90068,384,40011.6589,984,500163,472,650102,628,598
Total Operating and Capital Including Consolidation and Other Adjustments (not including Assets)3,516,399,614424,730,42713.73,091,669,1873,181,873,4372,914,029,672

Historic trends

Historic trend table
Historic trend analysis dataActuals
2019–20footnote 9
$
Actuals
2020–21footnote 9
$
Estimates
2021–22footnote 9
$
Estimates 2022–23
$
Ministry total operating and capital including consolidation and other adjustments (not including assets)2,759,310,9152,914,029,6723,091,669,1873,516,399,614
Year-over-year % increaseN/A6614

The Ministry of the Solicitor General is the largest direct-delivery service provider in the Ontario Public Service, providing essential frontline community safety services 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year to maintain the safety and security of all Ontarians. Actual ministry expenses increased year over year through 2020–21 mainly due to COVID‑19 related expenses in addition to investments to support frontline corrections and policing including corrections reform both within correctional institutions and in the community. The ministry takes the province’s fiscal challenges seriously and is actively working with its justice sector partners to modernize service delivery to restrain expenditures while maintaining critical service delivery.

Appendix: 2021–22 Annual report

2021–22 results

The ministry is building stronger and safer communities by supporting the public safety needs of the people of Ontario.

Responding to COVID‑19

As the ministry responsible for community safety, including emergency management, the ministry is the province’s operational centre for coordinating emergency response for situations requiring provincial support such as the COVID‑19 pandemic. The ministry-operated Provincial Emergency Operations Centre monitors the pandemic through daily contact with other provincial ministries, including the Ministry of Health, which is the lead ministry for human health emergencies, the Ministry of Long-Term Care, municipalities, First Nation communities, and regional organizations, government and non-government agencies such as the Canadian Red Cross, and federal partners, including Public Safety Canada and the Department of National Defense.

For 2021–22, the government, along with municipalities, public health units and other health partners, worked closely to coordinate health human resources and volunteers to open mass vaccination clinics to get shots into as many arms as quickly as possible, including boosters.

The ministry has built vaccine awareness and brought vaccines into neighbourhoods through initiatives such GO-VAXX, a fleet of eight retro-fitted GO bus mobile pop-up clinics and employer-led workplace clinics (see below).

To add a further layer of protection, the government expanded access to free rapid antigen tests distributed through pharmacies, grocery stores and community partners.

Such actions have accelerated the province’s return to a Roadmap Exit Step much sooner than was expected when temporary restrictions were introduced in January 2022 to limit the spread of the COVID‑19 Omicron variant.

The following are key ministry-related COVID‑19 activities for the April 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022, reporting period.

Launched Mobile Vaccine Units in Hot Spot Workplaces

Ontario further expanded its COVID‑19 vaccine distribution plan with the launch of mobile vaccine units for small to medium-sized businesses in hot spot communities. These mobile units began offering vaccinations in Toronto, York and Peel at select businesses that have employees who cannot work from home and are at risk of outbreaks. Each public health unit worked with businesses to deploy mobile units where needed.

Employer-led workplace vaccination clinics organized by large companies such as Maple Lodge Farms, Maple Leaf Foods and Amazon Canada in Peel Region were also completed or underway.

Rolled Out GO-VAXX — Vaccine Clinics on Wheels

The ministry partnered with Ministry of Health and Metrolinx to offer GO-VAXX, a new, convenient mobile option for people to receive their COVID‑19 vaccine. Two GO buses (increased to eight by the end of February 2022) were retrofitted to serve as mobile vaccine clinics as part of the province’s ‘last mile’ strategy to target those who had yet to receive a first or second dose, directly in their own communities. Since hitting the road, GO-VAXX buses have travelled to malls, festivals, community hubs and events.

As of March 31, 2022, more than 52,300 people had been vaccinated.

Additional measures to slow the spread of Omicron

In response to the rapidly spreading and highly transmissible Omicron variant, the Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, applied additional public health and workplace safety measures, including capacity and social gathering limits. These measures were to help curb transmission and safeguard Ontario’s hospital and ICU capacity as the province continued to rapidly accelerate its booster dose rollout.

Re-entered a modified ‘Step Two’ of Ontario’s provincial re-opening plan.

The government introduced new COVID‑19 restrictions to prevent the ‘wildfire’ spread of the Omicron variant and its threat to the healthcare system. The province re-entered a modified Step Two in its re-opening plan. Some restrictions that came into effect included reducing indoor capacity to five people and outdoor capacity to 10. Indoor dining was closed, and restaurants and bars were restricted to drive through and takeout service. Retail stores were allowed to remain open at 50% capacity and the province asked individuals to work remotely where possible.

The ministry reduced the pressure on the justice system with its continued work with cross sector justice partners to reduce low-risk inmate populations in congregate settings to help reduce the risk of COVID transmission in institutions. The use of global positioning system (GPS) electronic monitoring for bail releases was expanded to include seven correctional facilities. The ministry continues to help evolve and modernize the sector working closely with justice partners.

Supported Ontario’s gradual ease of public health measures

With key public health and health care indicators showing signs of improvement, the Ontario government released a multi-month timetable to ease public health measures cautiously and gradually.

Coordinated the development and extension of orders under Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020

The ministry led the coordination of decision-making for the development and extension of orders under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act and the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020. This included declaring a third emergency on April 7, 2021. The ministry issued 93 emergency orders in response to COVID‑19 and managed the wind down of orders with powers under the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID‑19) Act, 2020 which came to an end on March 28, 2022.

Leadership to combat human trafficking and intimate partner abuse

Zero tolerance for human trafficking

New act includes tools to raise awareness, better protect victims, support survivors of human trafficking and hold offenders accountable.

The Ontario government passed new legislation introduced by the Solicitor General and Associate Minister of the Ministry to Children, Community and Social Services to take further action to flight the deplorable crime of human trafficking. The Combating Human Trafficking Act, 2021 is the first legislation of its kind in Canada and builds upon the province’s $307-million Anti-Human Trafficking Strategy.

Human trafficking is one of the fastest-growing crimes worldwide. Ontario is a hub for human trafficking in Canada, with the most police-reported incidents in the country. The average age of recruitment into sex trafficking is approximately 13 years old.

Ontario’s new legislation includes two new acts as well as amendments to existing legislation to bolster the government’s response to combat human trafficking by:

  • increasing awareness of the issue, supporting a long-term provincial response and emphasizing that all Ontarians have a role to play in combatting human trafficking
  • supporting more survivors and the people who support them in obtaining restraining orders against traffickers, with specific consideration for Indigenous survivors
  • strengthening the ability of children’s aid societies and law enforcement to protect exploited children
  • increasing penalties for persons, including traffickers, who interfere with a child in the care of a children’s aid society
  • clarifying how and when police services can access information from hotel guest registers to help deter trafficking and identify and locate victims
  • establishing the power to include other types of accommodation providers, such as short-term rental companies

The legislation also requires companies that advertise sexual services to have a dedicated contact to support investigations into suspected human trafficking.

Supported victims of intimate partner violence and human trafficking

Intimate partner violence and human trafficking are horrible crimes. The victims and survivors need specialized supports to help them heal from their trauma and regain independence.

The ministry invested $5 million over two years for new services and supports for victims of intimate partner violence and human trafficking through a new Victim Support Grant (VSG) program. Intimate partner violence is defined as any behaviour within an intimate relationship that causes physical, psychological or sexual harm to those in the relationship, including acts of physical violence, sexual violence and controlling behaviours. The grant will help police and communities improve services to meet victims’ needs.

The VSG program builds on other government programs and services offered to victims and survivors of intimate partner violence and human trafficking and complements the province’s five-year, $307-million Anti-Human Trafficking Strategy 2020–2025.

Building strong, supportive and safe communities

Helped to encourage volunteerism

Eliminating fees for police record checks for volunteers benefits charities and organizations that rely on the helping hands of volunteers, as well as senior volunteers with fixed incomes.

The ministry eliminated the cost of certain police record checks for volunteers looking to give their time and skills to causes they care about. A police record check is a search of police database records about an individual. Removing the fee for Criminal Record Checks and Criminal Record and Judicial Matters Checks, which are commonly required by organizations that work with volunteers, will make it easier for Ontarians to support worthy community organization such as animal shelters and food banks. Volunteers can also receive up to five copies of these types of police record checks for free. The cost of such checks was often an impediment to volunteering, thus making it easier to apply to multiple volunteering positions.

Prospective volunteers will still need to pay any fees charged by police services for Vulnerable Sector Checks, which are considered the most thorough type of police record checks and require a comprehensive search of national and local police databases.

Expanding closed-circuit television CCTV surveillance to deter criminal activity

CCTV surveillance cameras are an essential tool in helping police detect, prevent and deter criminal activity.

The ministry expanded the fight against gun and gang violence across the province by providing an additional $3 million through the Ontario Closed Circuit Television Grant program first introduced in 2020–21. The new funding will help an additional nine police services support projects to replace outdated CCTV equipment, enhance current technology and expand coverage in areas where gun and gang violence and correlated crimes such as drug and human trafficking are most prevalent.

Investing in new CCTV equipment will mean better coverage and quality of captured video, and support both the investigation and criminal prosecution processes. The CCTV Grant program is part of the province’s Guns, Gangs and Violence Reduction Strategy which helps to deter criminal activity and improve public safety. To date, approximately $187 million has been invested to combat guns and gangs in Ontario.

Helped communities to address cybercrime

From 2019 and 2020 there was a 38% increase of cybercrime incidents in Ontario. Collaboration among community partners is important to help increase awareness of online crimes such as hate, human trafficking and fraud, and reduce the risk to public safety.

The ministry announced it is investing approximately $1.7 million over two years in the Safer and Vital Communities (SVC) Grant program to strengthen community safety and well-being across the province by encouraging community collaboration to help fight the rapid increase in cybercrime.

SVC Grants provide funding to community-based, not-for-profit organizations and First Nations Chiefs and Band Councils to address local risks to safety and well-being in the community. The theme for the 2022–24 SVC grant is “Preventing Cybercrime through Community Collaboration.” With this investment, the ministry is ensuring key public safety partners have the resources needed to help prevent members of the community from becoming victims of cybercrime.

Reimbursed northern municipalities for fire protection services

New program will make it easier for Northern municipalities to recoup costs associated with responding to emergency calls for assistance on Crown land. Ensuring they are not paying out of pocket for their important efforts.

The ministry launched a new program to reimburse Northern municipalities that provide emergency response services in parts of the province that don’t fall under any municipal boundaries, known as unincorporated areas. Until now, it was the municipality where the fire department is based that had to pay the bill.

Through this reimbursement under the province’s Northern Fire Protection Program (NFPP), the province is allocating funds to help Northern municipalities recover the cost of fire protection services such as search and rescue, medical, motor vehicle collision and property fires that are not covered by any other funding agreements.

The NFPP provides assistance and support for fire protection services to 48 communities without municipal organization.

Built on the community reintegration strategy to improve release planning

A solid reintegration strategy is essential for the successful transition of inmates back into the community

The ministry built on the Community Reintegration Strategy to improve release planning and ensure integrated, coordinated services to support individuals re-entering the community. The ministry improved release planning and ensured integrated, coordinated services to support individuals in re-entering the community through the Community Reintegration Project.

Strengthening frontline corrections support

Probation and parole officers are on the frontlines of protecting communities and ensuring individuals complete a safe and successful transition once they leave the institution.

The ministry continued to strengthen public safety by hiring 25 new community reintegration officers to directly support the successful transition of individuals in custody returning to their community. Community reintegration officers are specialized probation and parole officers who:

  • work collaboratively with institutional staff to provide enhanced supports and services for offenders
  • facilitate information sharing between corrections staff, justice partners and community-based service providers
  • build and facilitate opportunities for community partners, agencies or local communities to link individuals to an array of social, labour and faith-based programs

These new hires are part of a ministry investment of $23 million over two years to hire 50 additional probation and parole officers across the province, strengthen the supports available to help individuals safely re-enter the community and reduce the risk of recidivism.

Investing in mental health and addictions crisis response

Expanded mobile crisis teams

Mobile Crisis Response Teams are best positioned to respond to people experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis and de-escalate situations that could pose a risk to public safety.

The ministry is improving public safety and supports for people in crisis by investing more than $4 million over 2022–23 and 2023-24 to expand Mobile Crisis Response Teams. These teams consist of police officers and crisis workers working together to respond to complex situations where mental health or addictions may be a factor.

Police services in 28 communities will receive grant funding to increase their capacity to respond to calls from individuals experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis. The investment will enable police services to add mental health and addictions crisis workers to existing Mobile Crisis Response Teams and help ensure these specialized resources are available where and when needed.

The Mobile Crisis Response Teams Enhancement Grant is part of Ontario’s Roadmap to Wellness to build the province’s mental health and addictions system.

OPP Crisis Call Diversion Program

Having mental health and crisis professionals available to respond to callers in distress ensures individuals can get the appropriate help when they need it and reduces the need for police resources to be allocated to non-emergency situations.

The ministry extended resources to individuals experiencing a mental health or addictions crisis by expanding the OPP Crisis Call Diversion Program to Orillia and North Bay. The OPP Crisis Call Diversion program helps provincial police officers offer the most appropriate response to calls from individuals experiencing medical health or addictions crisis by embedding professional mental health and addictions crisis workers into OPP Provincial Communications Centres.

Once assigned to a call, a crisis worker can assist callers by providing resources and tools, offering referrals and helping them navigate the mental health system. Alternatively, the crisis worker can provide support and assist in preliminary de-escalation when a call has been assigned to a police officer.

The OPP provides frontline policing services to more than 300 Ontario municipalities and rural communities that do not have their own municipal or regional police services. Provincial Communications Centres operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week to answer 911 emergency and non-emergency calls for service. London was the first provincial communications centre to offer the Crisis Call Diversion Program in 2020. Expanding to Orillia, Thunder Bay and North Bay, the program is now offered at four provincial communications centres.

Digitally connecting Ontario’s justice sector

New digital technology supports a more efficient justice system

The eIntake digital application is an important step toward the modernization of the criminal justice system, enabling police to file criminal charges electronically and streamline information sharing between police and other enforcement agencies and courts in real time.

In December 2021, the ministry rolled out its eIntake digital platform to City of Toronto courthouses. eIntake allows police officers to file criminal charges electronically and enables justices of the peace to enter their decisions, sign documents digitally and request additional information from police online. Improving the digital tools and information accessible to Ontario’s police, prosecutors and justice partners is critical to bringing offenders to justice. The ministry successfully launched the eIntake system in the Northeast, Northwest, Central East, West and Toronto regions. More than 46,000 charging documents have been received by eIntake since the application’s launch in January 2021.

The ministry is working to ensure the platform is available provincewide by the summer of 2022.

Emergency management

Coordinated the evacuation of First Nation communities in a pandemic environment during Ontario’s worst forest fire season in over 50 years in 2021

Collaboration with multiple partners is mission critical in successful emergency management.

The 2021 wildland fire season was one of the most challenging since 1960, resulting in six First Nation communities evacuating to locations in Northern and Southern Ontario in a pandemic environment. With any First Nation emergency such as flooding or wildland fires, various levels of government and First Nation leadership have clearly defined roles and responsibilities.

The decision whether to evacuate a First Nation community belongs to the Chief and local Council. The province, including the ministry and other partners, play a support role in facilitating the safe evacuation and eventual return home of evacuees.

EMO deployed approximately 20 field officers into host communities to provide support and coordination for evacuees. Through the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre, EMO also provided coordination for evacuations and connected First Nations communities and Indigenous organizations with on the ground organizations such as the Canadian Red Cross, local medical staff and municipal services to support the care and well-being of the evacuees.

Approximately 3,700 First Nation community members were evacuated at the height of the forest fires. The ministry successfully adapted to the needs of First Nation communities by piloting new hosting models such as an EMO/non-government organization-led model in Sudbury and an EMO/private-led hosting model in Peel Region and London. These models included wraparound public health and Indigenous cultural supports.

Supported increased provincewide emergency management preparedness and resiliency

A Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) jurisdictional staffing review was completed in 2021 across Canada and the United States and identified EMO to be the lowest resourced jurisdiction based on a number of factors such as per capita, per municipality, and per emergency. In response, EMO took a phased approach to increase its staffing levels to more effectively deliver on its responsibilities. The ministry commenced hiring of up to 69 new positions to support increased provincewide emergency management resiliency.

In April 2022, amendments were made to the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act as part of the Pandemic and Emergency Preparedness Act, 2022 to strengthen emergency oversight and coordination by:

  • requiring the establishment of an accountability and governance framework for emergencies
  • requiring the development of a provincial emergency management plan that is publicly available, reviewed and revised at least every five years, with an annual public report on progress of the plan
  • enhancing identification, assessment and planning requirements for potential emergency hazards and risks

Supporting Ontario’s frontlines

Improved access to best-in-class mental health supports for first responders

Police and firefighters are among those at greatest risk of PTSD and other work-related mental health issues.

The Ontario government invested $1 million for the Toronto-based Runnymede Healthcare Centre’s First Responders Post-Traumatic Stress Injury Rehabilitation Treatment and Assessment Centre. It is estimated that over 13,000 first responders suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). That number is expected to grow to over 16,000 by 2040. The COVID‑19 pandemic has also exacerbated the mental health challenges first responders face. The new centre would include up to two new facilities that will provide comprehensive mental health rehabilitation program to first responders across the Greater Toronto Area.

The ministry is working with Runnymede Healthcare Centre to finalize the early stages of planning, including identifying programming, operational space and funding needs. Over time, this project has the potential to be expanded provincially and include other frontline professionals to help improve access to safe and effective mental health supports.

Mobile options to meet firefighter training needs

The introduction of two new Mobile Life Training Units give fire services greater access to high quality, live fire training in their own communities.

Two new Mobile Live Fire Training Units hit the road in 2021–22. The new units are part of the ministry’s plan to expand and modernize access to firefighter training and are delivering high-quality, hands-on training directly to fire services in all regions of the province.

There are 441 fire departments in Ontario, including large municipal services, composite fire departments made up of full-time and volunteer personnel and small municipal fire services made up solely of volunteers. The 16-metre-long units are designed to operate across the province, including at Regional Training Centres and local fire departments. The new Mobile Live Fire Training Units simulate real situations involving fire, which forms an important part of firefighter training and complements in-class learning.

Expanded mental health supports for the OPP

New investment will significantly enhance the mental-health and well-being services and supports that are available to valued OPP officers, staff and their families.

The ministry invested $12.5 million over three years to strengthen the mental health services available to the OPP and their families. Police personnel are among the professionals who are most likely to be exposed to occupational stress situations while protecting communities. The funding will support the hiring of 20 additional mental-health support staff and enhance the OPP’s Healthy Workplace initiative to address issues of mental health and occupational stress injuries.

The Healthy Workplace program is available to OPP officers and civilians, retired members, as well as their family members. The program’s enhancements will also allow the OPP to provide consultation and support to Indigenous and municipal police partners.

Expanded support for the mental health and wellness of Ontario’s public safety personnel

To support the mental health and wellness of Ontario’s public safety personnel, the ministry established four mental health collaborative tables in February 2021 to better support the mental health and well-being of corrections, emergency health services, fire, and policing personnel. The tables held quarterly meetings through 2021–22 and identified sector and cross-sectoral gaps and opportunities. They collectively indicated the need for improved access to programs specifically tailored to public safety personnel and greater access to trauma-informed clinicians.

The ministry established a Mental Health Secretariat that worked with key partners to define services to support mental health promotion, resiliency, early intervention, and treatment for public safety personnel.

In 2021–22, the Mental Health Secretariat delivered a Mental Health Action Plan to support public safety personnel across Ontario. 2021–22 accomplishments included the development and implementation of a performance measurement framework, the leveraging of over $10M through the Roadmap to Wellness strategy, and the launch of the one-year PeerConnect pilot.

Investing in new policing infrastructure

Implemented leading-edge policing equipment and technology to meet the complex demands of modern police operations

The ministry worked with partner ministries to eliminate licence plate renewal fees and the requirement to have a licence plate sticker for passenger vehicles, light-duty trucks, motorcycles and mopeds.

The ministry also invested in Automated Licence Plate Recognition (ALPR) technology to provide police with the tools they need to do their jobs, improve public safety and strengthen roadside law enforcement efforts across the province. ALPRs are a system of cameras and supporting software which captures licence plate information and immediately compares plate numbers to a Ministry of Transportation database with vehicle and owner information. An ALPR system can read thousands of licence plates per minute allowing officers to process more information on licence plates. It also has the capability of capturing vehicles of interest such as amber alerts, drivers with a suspended licence, and stolen vehicles.

Leading edge facilities provided officers with the tools they need to keep people safe.

In 2021–22 the OPP opened a brand-new detachment in Orillia and broke ground on a new detachment in Cambridge. These detachments are the latest developments in the ministry’s OPP Modernization — Phase 2 project to replace aging OPP facilities across the province that are at the end of their lifespan and no longer meet the requirements of today’s OPP operations.

The Orillia detachment provides approximately 34,000 square feet of space, a modern infrastructure design to support ever-changing technology requirements including facilities to secure evidence, 12 holding cells, closed-circuit television technology and other advanced security features. The Cambridge detachment will feature approximately 17,000 square feet of space to support ever-changing technology requirements including facilities to secure evidence, three holding cells and CCTV along with other advanced security features.

Both detachments include vehicle Collision Reporting Centres, are designed to be accessible and meet the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Standard, which recognizes buildings with reduced environmental impacts. Construction on the Cambridge detachment is expected to be completed in mid-2023.

Investing in correctional infrastructure

Further protection to prevent contraband entering correctional facilities

Corrections staff must be equipped with the modern tools and technologies they need to do their job safely and securely.

The Ontario government implemented a series of new measures to prevent harmful items and substances such as drugs, alcohol, weapons and cell phones from entering the province’s adult correctional facilities. The measures are part of Ontario’s Contraband Strategy and Action Plan which includes investments in more tools and technology to increase detection, enhance security measures, and improve the collection, analysis and sharing of data with justice sector partners to ensure the safety of staff and individuals in custody.

The ministry enhanced security at 14 adult correctional facilities with the addition of high-tech ion scanners. Currently, there are a number of methods used to prevent, detect, confiscate and reduce contraband within adult institutions such as body scanners, hand-held and walk-through metal detectors, searches and canine units.

Ion scanners are tools used to detect and identify trace elements of drugs and are an added layer of security to help prevent illegal substances from entering facilities.

The addition of 14 ion scanners in 2021–22 brings the contraband detection technology to every adult correctional facility in the province as part of Ontario’s Contraband Strategy and Action Plan.

New infrastructure will transform correctional services

Replacing ageing facilities in Thunder Bay continues the transformation of Ontario’s adult corrections system.

The Thunder Bay Correctional Complex, which is scheduled to open in 2026, will replace the ageing Thunder Bay Jail and parts of the Thunder Bay Correctional Centre. Thunder Bay’s existing corrections infrastructure is among the oldest in the province, with pieces dating back to 1928.

The new state-of-the-art 345-bed facility will:

  • provide separate minimum, medium and maximum-security sectors along with behavioural and mental health housing options
  • offer programming and healthcare services in units instead of separate areas to better support inmate management and reduce risk to staff
  • add capacity to deliver more culturally responsive services and supports to the Indigenous population
  • connect with a new 50-bed modernization of the existing Thunder Bay Correctional Centre

Frontline corrections staff and Indigenous leaders will be engaged to inform the design of the new complex. The Thunder Bay Correctional Complex builds on the province’s strategy to invest more than $500 million dollars over five-years to transform correctional services.

Addressed capacity challenges and expanded mental health supports in correctional services

The ministry has invested in the build of a new, modern 345-bed multi-purpose correctional centre complex in Thunder Bay to support safe community reintegration and address overcrowding with 50 additional beds.

The ministry continues to modernize the corrections system in Eastern Ontario Correctional Complex in Kemptville through the replacement of Brockville Jail with a new facility and expanding the St. Lawrence Valley Correctional Treatment Centre and Quinte Detention Centre to improve mental health services for women who are incarcerated.

Keeping Ontario open for business

New measures to protect international border crossings

Hundreds of millions of dollars worth of essential goods for people and businesses pass across Ontario’s international borders every day. New measures were needed to protect borders crossings, which are critical to the public.

In March 2022, the ministry introduced legislation that provides police with the necessary powers to respond effectively to future disruptions of protected transportation infrastructure, where those disruptions interfere with public safety, the economy, and international trade. This will enable greater protection of jobs that rely on international trade and shield the economy from future disruptions such as the illegal blockade of Windsor’s Ambassador Bridge in February 2022. The blockade led to temporary factory closures, shift reductions and impacted billions of dollars worth of trade.

The Keeping Ontario Open for Business Act, 2022 enables police officers to protect and respond to future obstructions of protected transportation infrastructure when an impediment disrupts ordinary economic activity or interferes with the safety, health or well-being of members of the public, and to remove and store objects making up an illegal blockade. The legislation provides police officers and the Registrar of Motor Vehicles with tools related to licence and plate suspensions to deal with such impediments. It also makes amendments to the Highway Traffic Act to permit the suspension of driver’s licences and denial of vehicle permit renewals for people who have unpaid fines for violating the legislation.

The act was passed by the legislature on April 14, 2022. The ministry is also investing nearly $96 million in new measures and tools to support provincewide responses during unlawful demonstrations and illegal blockades that impede protected infrastructure.

Table 3: Ministry interim actual expenditures 2021–22footnote 10
ItemAmount
COVID‑19 ($M)136.9
Other operating ($M)3,008.3
Capital ($M)36.6
Staff strength as of March 31, 2022 (Ontario Public Service Full-time Equivalent positions)18,575.33