OTTAWA, ON, Dec. 8, 2021 /CNW/ - The Government is committed to strengthening engagement with local and Indigenous groups as part of broader efforts to strengthen the safety of Canada's railway system and better protect those living and working near Canada's rail corridors.
Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, announced a new rail safety component under the Community Participation Funding Program and launched a call for proposals for 2021-22 with up to $300K available in funding.
The objectives of the Community Participation Funding Program-Rail Safety Component include:
supporting the participation of, and collaboration with, local and Indigenous communities and organizations in Transport Canada's engagement processes; and
increasing awareness and improving information sharing regarding risks and mitigations associated with railway safety.
The Community Participation Funding Program-Rail Safety Component aims to provide short-term grants with the goal of supporting the participation of eligible communities and organizations in the development and improvement of Canada's rail safety transportation system. Recipients will be encouraged to share their knowledge and expertise of local environments to help inform rail safety initiatives and future programming.
Those interested in learning more about the Community Participation Funding Program-Rail Safety Component are invited to consult Transport Canada's website.
Transport Canada recognizes the importance of supporting opportunities for local and Indigenous communities and organizations to participate in the development and improvement of Canada's rail transportation system in Canada that may impact their daily activities and communities.
"The new rail safety component of the Community Participation Funding Program is another step towards meaningful engagement with local and Indigenous communities as we work together to ensure our rail system operates as safely and securely as possible across Canada."
The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport
Transport Canada continues to take action to address the concerns of communities who live and work near rail lines; and to increase the safety of railway operations in the context of extreme weather conditions.
In the aftermath of the wildfires in British Columbia last summer, Transport Canada engaged directly with British Columbia's Emergency Measures Organization, the Lytton First Nation, the Lytton community, and the railway companies. This included regular rail safety briefings with local communities and hearing from First Nations groups.
In August 2021, Transport Canada announced over $100 million over five years, starting in 2021-22, for activities including: advancing the safe and secure transportation of people and goods by rail, which includes supporting meaningful engagement with Indigenous and local communities along rail corridors.
Transport Canada launched the Community Participation Funding Program in 2017 through the $1.5-billion Oceans Protection Plan—the largest investment to date to protect our oceans today and for future generations, while growing the economy—to help eligible Indigenous Peoples and local communities to take part in developing and improving Canada's marine transportation system.
Transport Canada will build on the work of the Community Participation Funding Program-Rail Safety Component in 2022-23, aiming to also develop a longer-term engagement component to support both local and Indigenous community engagement.
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SOURCE Transport Canada
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