Provincial changes hoping to make a dent in rural crime have the support of the Lakeland federal rep. Last week the Government of Alberta revealed a plan to tackle the issue that includes a new Integrated Defence Force of 400 peace officers taking on more duties to assist RCMP officers.

Lakeland MP Shannon Stubbs says the plan is a step in the right direction.

“Everywhere I go, in rural areas, in towns; People and families and business owners and residents raise the issue of rural crime.”

Stubbs herself has been a strong advocate for fighting rural crime in Ottawa. She says she’s still keeping up the talk in Ottawa as the federal government still has work to help the problem.

“The federal government’s responsibility is to make sure the RCMP has enough resources and the ability to expedite recruitment and training so there can be more RCMP officers on-the-ground.”

Other changes announced by the province include harsher penalties for trespassing charges and the ability for victims to use the new Restitution Recoveries Program, allowing them to collect outstanding payments and the like.

Stubbs says now the announcement has been made, the proof will be in the results the new initiatives get.

“What all Albertans will look forward to is seeing the details. They’ve made the preliminary announcement and what will be important is to see the ways in which this will really roll out.”