Proceedings of the Standing Senate Committee on
National Security and Defence

Issue 6 - Evidence, October 30, 2006


OTTAWA, Monday, October 30, 2006

The Standing Committee on National Security and Defence met this day at 9:45 a.m. to examine and report on the national security policy of Canada.

Senator Colin Kenny (Chairman) in the chair.

[English]

The Chairman: I welcome you all today to the meeting. Before I introduce our guests I want briefly to introduce the members of the committee.

To my right is Senator Wilfred Moore from Halifax. He is a lawyer with an extensive record of community involvement. He has served for 10 years on the board of governors of Saint Mary's University. He also sits on the Standing Senate Committee on Banking, Trade and Commerce and the Standing Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons for the Scrutiny of Regulations.

On his right is the distinguished senator from British Columbia, Senator Gerry St. Germain, who has served in Parliament since 1983, first as a member of the House of Commons and then as a senator. He is chair of the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples and he also sits on the Standing Joint Committee of the Senate and the House of Commons for the Scrutiny of Regulations.

On my left is Senator Norm Atkins from Ontario who came to the Senate with 27 years of experience in the field of communications. He served as senior adviser to former federal Conservative leader, Robert Stanfield, Premier William Davis of Ontario, also a Conservative, and Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.

On my far left is Senator Tommy Banks from Alberta, who was called to the Senate following a 50-year career in the entertainment industry. He is chair of the Standing Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources.

Our committee has been mandated to examine security and defence and the need for a national security policy. Thus far, we have produced 15 reports and our most recent one, Managing Turmoil, was released in the first week of October. The report is available from the clerk of the committee.

Today we will have an opportunity to continue our study of national security issues and, in particular, the role of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority, CATSA, in airport security. We are fortunate to have before us Jacques Duchesneau, president of CATSA. Mr. Duchesneau was named president and chief executive officer of CATSA in October of 2002. Prior to this date, he had a distinguished 30-year career as chief of the Montreal Urban Community Police Service, MUCPS, including a five-year tenure in that position. Prior to that, he was chief of staff of MUCPS from 1994 to 1998. Since 2000, Mr. Duchesneau has acted as colonel-commandant of the Canadian Forces Military Police. He was also vice-president of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police from 1993 to 1997 and vice- president of the Quebec Association of Police Directors from 1993 to 1997. In 1996, he was honoured as a Member of the Order of Canada.

Accompanying Mr. Duchesneau today is Mark Duncan, executive vice-president and chief operating officer, who has appeared before this committee before, and Kevin McGarr, vice-president and chief technology officer, who is well known to this committee.

Mr. Duchesneau, I understand you have a brief statement to make.

[Translation]

Jacques Duchesneau, C.M., President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Air Transport Security Authority: Mr. Chairman, thank you for inviting us to meet with you again. It has been a couple of years since we were last here, but I am pleased to see this committee's continued interest in the security of our country. I know that air transportation safety and the protection of civil aviation, of its employees and of passengers are among our common interests.

[English]

In the course of this appearance, we will answer all your questions to the best of our abilities. We will provide you with all information required as a result of our discussion.

First, however, let me assure you that we are fully committed to fulfilling our mission to protect the public by securing critical elements of the air transportation system as best we can. In this respect, we will update you on the enhancements we have made with respect to managing contracts with our screening personnel providers. We will address the questions of CATSA's requirements and responsibilities within our regulatory framework. We will outline our overall approach to air transport security screening.

Since our last appearance, we have renegotiated the contracts with our providers of screening personnel and have added some important requirements and enhancements including: enhanced on-site management and performance assessment; new requirements for code of ethics; and improved uniform controls.

We can provide more details on any of these enhancements during the question and answer session.

[Translation]

Since we were here last, we have met international and domestic safety requirements, pursued the implementation and study of new screening technologies and identified some shortcomings in the security screening process. We have, among other things, completed the national deployment of our checked baggage screening systems, met the ICAO deadline for baggage screening for international flights and have completed the domestic requirements a year ahead of schedule.

We conducted extensive research into the new biometric technology that we are using for the Restricted Area Identification Card to ensure that it provides the necessary personal and security safeguards needed in today's airport environment and has added value for the system.

This brings me to the issue of CATSA's responsibility as a government body. As you know, the government sets the priorities and Transport Canada establishes the legal and regulatory framework to implement the policies. CATSA is the operating entity and must work within the framework established by Transport Canada.

Within our mandate, we believe it is our responsibility to identify gaps or shortcomings and propose ways of addressing them to our regulator. This is what we have been doing since our creation as we execute our mandate and fulfil our legislative responsibilities.

Our objective is to make sure that we have a system that is secure, consistent, efficient and effective and that we are always one step, or I should rather say several steps, ahead of the terrorists.

[English]

Before I conclude my remarks today, I want to outline CATSA's ongoing planning and vision to foster the development of a more integrated aviation security screening system.

My first point is about the three vital tasks of aviation security, as we understand them, and how they are to be accomplished. The first is prevention, by sharing information and conducting threat and risk assessments to detect and deter potential attacks. The second is preparedness, by proactively putting in place the tools and procedures to ensure that we are ready to deal with whatever comes our way. The third is action, by actively putting into place security measures and procedures to guard the air transportation system from evolving threats.

My second point is about what our experience has taught us over the past four and a half years. The first is partnerships. Although equipment is essential and training is vital, CATSA also needs to work closely with its security partners to ensure that we all understand the environment in which we work. We believe that to be cost-efficient, operationally effective and nationally consistent, our aviation security system should be as comprehensive as possible. To that end, it should be based on the principles of communication, cooperation and coordination among the various actors and layers of security involved in an airport environment. We believe that a comprehensive approach should include the flexibility to allocate resources where they are most needed, increase the reliability of the air transport security system and meet the triple requirement of maximum, seamless and cost-efficient security. We believe that such a system should be threat-based and risk-based, rather than rule-based. This emphasis would ensure that passengers receive their money's worth, that the system is coherent and that the necessary partnerships exist and work.

[Translation]

My third point is about CATSA striving to be a proactive and pre-emptive aviation security organization. In this respect, our guiding modus operandi has been the following. We call it the AGILE model. The five-phase AGILE model speaks to a concept of action rather than reaction. It is about flexibility rather than rigidity and coordination rather than isolation.

The first phase of this model is Assess. We need to better understand the environment that we are working in by collaborating closely with our partners in the air transport security community to learn about the ever-changing nature of security threats to aviation around the world.

The second phase is Guard. We need to build improved layers of defence to better protect the travelling public, our airports and our airplanes against potential attacks.

The third phase is Intervene. We need to ensure that we have sufficient mechanisms to intervene in the event of an incident that threatens the security of our operations and customers.

The fourth and fifth phases are Learn and Evolve. These two phases are critically important to ensure that our practices and our procedures remain relevant and effective.

[English]

Through its contract screening officers, CATSA takes more than 100 million decisions each year. We cannot be complacent, and we must never let our guard down.

[Translation]

We can wait for a crisis to arise to force us to act or we can commit to working together and to acting now to ensure that we anticipate and protect against potential threats. Passenger safety is our priority and we must do our utmost towards having the most effective aviation security system possible.

[English]

Mr. Chairman, we would be pleased to answer your questions.

The Chairman: Thank you, Mr. Duchesneau. You have been in the job for awhile and have adapted to a complex system. Can you describe who is involved in the system and who you deal with from the airports right through to Transport Canada? With that information, the committee can have a complete picture of the various players providing security to the flying public.

Mr. Duchesneau: Our closest partner is Transport Canada, who is the regulator. We deal with officials from TC on a daily basis to exchange ideas and to enhance the system that is in place. We also work with other security partners such as the police and the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, CSIS, receiving information from different open sources. We also work with international partners. Most of our positions were created after 9/11 so all our organizations are relatively new. We exchange a great deal of information with various partners who perform much the same functions as we perform. We also work with officials from airlines and at airports, who are close partners. We deploy equipment under airports and we work with airlines in a way to enhance the system.

I will summarize our job for the last four and one-half years. In the first three to four years, we managed fear because people feared going to airports. That was our main focus. We needed to deploy equipment that showed the flying public that security screeners at airports meant business. Now, the focus should be on education. We saw that need after the August 10 incidents when we received a lot of information from our partners abroad. We quickly communicated with the passengers all the information that was necessary for them to travel. We realized that a new layer of protection was also installed and that was the passengers. They cooperated with us quickly because they knew why we implemented these new measures. The bottom line was their safety. The first partners are our passengers. That roughly summarizes our partners but I would add the Canada Border Services Agency. We take care of people when they leave the country and CBSA takes care of them when they return to the country so we need to work closely together. I have regular meetings with senior managers from all these organizations.

The Chairman: Is it fair to say that you take direction from Transport Canada on all your policies?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

The Chairman: Every policy that you have is vetted and authorized by Transport Canada.

Mr. Duchesneau: We receive our guidelines from Transport Canada. We share concerns and ideas, and we try to work together.

The Chairman: At the end of the day, they determine policy.

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

The Chairman: How is policy for airports determined? Do airport authorities follow your directions or do they decide on their own policies?

Mr. Duchesneau: They have their own responsibilities. As you know, there are many players. I believe that one of the committee's reports mentioned that Toronto, for example, has many law enforcement agencies at Pearson International Airport. Airports have their own security personnel and we need to work together.

Most of the time, our regional managers sit down with airport authorities. An airport operations group has representatives from the airport obviously, but also representatives from the airlines, CATSA, CBSA and the police. The group meets regularly to exchange ideas and new practices.

The Chairman: However, for example, if an airport chose not to search a certain class of person, that class of person would not be searched, is that correct?

Mr. Duchesneau: No: That responsibility is ours — 100 per cent of people boarding a plane in Canada are screened by CATSA.

The Chairman: You know that is not true, Mr. Duchesneau. You know that 100 per cent of people are not screened; pilots are screened in some airports and not others.

Mr. Duchesneau: There is random screening at certain airports — yes, that is a good point.

The Chairman: So 100 per cent are not screened, is that correct?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

The Chairman: At Fixed Base of Operation, where charters take place, how many takeoffs and landings are there at airports in Canada?

Mr. Duchesneau: I need to qualify my answer. I was talking about commercial flights; 99.2 per cent of people boarding a commercial flight in Canada are screened, to be precise.

The Chairman: Do the airports decide whether the crew is searched?

Mark Duncan, Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer, Canadian Air Transport Security Authority: To talk about that, you need a framework for security.

The Chairman: That was my first question — about the framework.

Mr. Duncan: The framework involves regulations for airlines and airports, which they must follow, and we operate under several regulations. The airports, primarily, are responsible for all the access control and all the physical aspects.

Our job relates to six primary items that we perform. Our primary ones are screening of all checked-in baggage and all carry-on baggage, as well as screening all the people who go on the aircraft.

The Chairman: Do you have any responsibility for mail?

Mr. Duncan: We have no responsibility for mail.

The Chairman: No one has responsibility for mail.

Mr. Duncan: Transport Canada has responsibility for all the aspects of cargo, including mail.

The Chairman: They choose not to exercise that responsibility: is that correct?

Mr. Duncan: I am not commenting on responsibilities for Transport Canada. There are procedures in shipping, et cetera, of all aspects in Canada, but we are confined to the six elements that are CATSA's responsibilities.

The Chairman: In terms of dealing with the airports, it is different from one airport to another: is that correct? For instance, you have different relationships with Pearson International Airport than you would with Calgary Airport.

Mr. Duncan: I do not understand the question.

The Chairman: The rules might be different in terms of searching pilots at Pearson than they are at Calgary.

Mr. Duncan: Yes: In terms of access control, which again is under the Aerodrome Regulations, it is the responsibility of the aerodrome. The aerodrome may define various aspects and how people access the secure side. The airport determines those aspects, depending on the size and volume of their particular airport.

The Chairman: Mr. Duchesneau, was I getting a description from you of the different features you deal with? If I understand correctly, you deal with 79 airports?

Mr. Duncan: It is eighty-nine.

The Chairman: Each one of those 89 airports is different in its own way, is it not?

Mr. Duchesneau: If we are talking about our six mandates, we work consistently across the country. If we are talking about things outside our mandate, obviously, different airports work differently.

The Chairman: Who you search is one of your mandates: is that not so?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman: In some airports you might search every pilot and in others, you might not.

Mr. Duncan: Again, you are talking about the access control to the secure side of the airport, which is the responsibility of the aerodrome operator. There is an equivalent level of service right across the country: obviously, in larger airports, the access control solution is different.

We contribute where we have a non-passenger screening program, which is a random non-passenger screening program for access. We screen people on a random basis for access to the secure area. The responsibility for maintaining that secure area, the physical aspects and the access controls, is and always has been the responsibility of the aerodrome operator.

The Chairman: To be specific, at some airports, random inspections of pilots might be 100 per cent, and at others, it might be a percentage that is far less than that: is that correct?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct.

The Chairman: In other words, at some airports you search pilots and at others you do not.

Mr. Duncan: Again, access to the air side is an aerodrome responsibility. Everyone has a pass. I know you have discussed that with Transport Canada. We have a program for random screening for the access. If an airport chooses to search also for access to their secure side, that is an airport initiative.

Senator St. Germain: In regard to consistency, as far as the airport security is concerned, I realize that you are not responsible for this but can you tell us, Mr. Duncan, where the rules are established? Are the local authorities totally on their own or are guidelines set by Transport Canada for the security of what you refer to? You say you are not responsible for access, et cetera. Who sets the guidelines and who sets the bar in regard to these local authorities, such as at the airports in Vancouver, Dorval, et cetera?

Mr. Duncan: All airports must comply with the Aerodrome Security Measures.

Senator St. Germain: Who sets them?

Mr. Duncan: Transport Canada sets those measures. The regulation governs that. The aerodrome must come up with a security plan to meet those Aerodrome Security Measures.

Senator St. Germain: Who sees that these guidelines are enforced?

Mr. Duncan: That is a Transport Canada responsibility.

Senator St. Germain: Is there a special unit of Transport Canada that does this?

Mr. Duncan: I cannot comment on the special unit. However, a security unit within Transport Canada has inspectors who oversee the implementation of those measures.

Senator Moore: I want to make it clear. Senator St. Germain asked about who sets these rules and who implements them. You say Transport Canada sets the guidelines and the airport authorities must implement the plan, consistent with the guidelines. Do the guidelines say that all air crew — pilots and flight attendants — are to be included in this same screening as passengers?

Mr. Duncan: First, Aerodrome Security Measures are regulations, and I would need to go specifically to that. However, for access to the air side, as we indicated before, it is the responsibility of the carrier to implement the guidelines.

Senator Moore: Is it the carrier or the airport operator?

Mr. Duncan: The airport operator sets the guidelines for access to the air side.

Senator Moore: The airport operator is the one that says whether air crew must be screened, not Transport Canada?

Mr. Duncan: That is as long as they meet the security measures. For example, Transport Canada may have a special measure on that, but again, Transport Canada ensures the application of these particular measures.

The Chairman: Perhaps, Mr. Duncan, while we carry on our questioning with Mr. Duchesneau, you would look up the exact material and read it to us. Time and again when the committee has been down this road, we hear from you and your colleagues that these areas are all covered by regulations. Then, when we look into the regulations, we find that the regulations say: They may do what they like on this, or they may do what they like on that. Having an answer that these are covered by regulations at first gave us a warm and fuzzy feeling that everything was fine, but as we look into the regulations a little more, we find anomalies and differences that allow for unevenness across the country. We would like you to highlight those differences for us.

Mr. Duncan: Yes: I have one clarification. It is not our responsibility to set the regulations.

The Chairman: Mr. Duchesneau said in his opening sentence that he is only doing what he is told. What we want to know is how you implement the instructions you get.

Mr. Duncan: We have no instructions under Airdrome Security Regulations. We work with them, but we do not carry out their instructions. I will try to find the reference to pilots.

The Chairman: You do the searching, though, do you not?

Mr. Duncan: We search on a random basis, yes.

The Chairman: It is on no basis at all, in some cases. If it is at a Fixed Base Operation, you do not have any personnel there.

Mr. Duncan: We have no personnel at a Fixed Base Operation, no.

The Chairman: That is part of an airport, is it not?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct, but we are searching in terms of the secure area prior to boarding a particular aircraft.

The Chairman: Are the chartered areas or the general aviation area considered insecure?

Mr. Duncan: There is no access from a general aviation area to the boarding ramp or the holding room, for example, which is just prior to passengers boarding a commercial flight.

The Chairman: However, there is access to large airplanes, is there not?

Mr. Duncan: There could be private charter airplanes. However, as indicated under our regulations, we screen passengers on commercial flights departing from airports between the secure areas of those airports.

The Chairman: If we were to call for witnesses to testify as to the screening of people boarding chartered aircraft from general aviation parts of airports, we would have no one sitting before us; is that not correct?

Mr. Duncan: They would not come from CATSA.

The Chairman: They would not come from anyone, would they, Mr. Duchesneau, because no one does it?

Mr. Duchesneau: There are regulations. I am not the expert. That is why I rely on Mr. Duncan, who has worked with Transport Canada for a thousand years.

The Chairman: He is the designated guy today.

Senator St. Germain: He is good. I have known him for a long time.

Senator Banks: Thank you for joining us, gentlemen. It is nice to see you again.

The reason behind these questions is that we believe that there are inconsistencies across the country in technological areas, in policies and in the application of those policies. If we know those things, then people who are not as well intended as we are also probably know those things: weak link in the chain, and so on.

The week before last, Mr. Duchesneau, by way of example, I purchased a ticket on a scheduled commercial airliner to fly from Edmonton to Lethbridge. That scheduled commercial airliner did not leave from the international terminal. I obtained a boarding pass at a general aviation facility, I walked onto that airplane carrying God knows what, and no one stopped me or talked to me about anything. The same is true of the other 20 people on that plane. It is a commercial flight, a commercial ticket and a scheduled airline. It leaves at this time every day and comes back at this time every day.

That may be only 0.8 per cent, using your number, because you said that 99.2 per cent of people who get on commercial airliners are searched. However, if we know about that 0.8 per cent that is the exception, then so do the bad guys. Does this kind of inconsistency make sense in terms of the application of airport security and the safety of Canadians?

Our view is that inconsistency, to the extent that it exists and is as easily found out as we have found it out, is not consistent with the best interests of the Canadian flying public. Do you agree?

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, you have taught us that the best approach is to give straight answers. We are not here to dodge questions. I know where you want us to go.

Policies, as I mentioned in my opening remarks, are set by government, and regulations are set by our regulator. We operate within the six mandates that were given to us and we try to achieve results that are 100 per cent within the mandates.

As for your question, I am surprised to hear about that situation, because it is in our regulations that 100 per cent of people boarding a commercial flight at one of the 89 airports that we take care of are required to be screened before boarding an aircraft. That is my understanding. The 0.8 per cent who are not screened come from airports other than one of the 89.

Is that the right answer, Mr. Chief Operating Officer?

Senator Moore: They come from where?

Senator Banks: I do not know. I am quoting Mr. Duchesneau's figures. He said that 99.2 per cent of passengers who board a commercial airline are screened. That means that there are 0.8 per cent who are not screened, and I was one of them last week. I do not know where they come from. They come from examples such as the one I gave.

The Chairman: Is there a purpose to your question, Senator Banks? Why do you not ask: Who are the 0.8 per cent?

Senator Banks: Who are the 0.8 per cent of the people who are not screened? I know they include me in that particular instance, but who else and where else are they?

Mr. Duncan: That issue is, where do you draw the line. We screen passengers at the 89 airports that are designated. There are many more than 89 airports in Canada. There are many flights in Canada between small airports and major airports. Yes, you can question the size of the particular aircraft, and that is a question for Transport Canada and the government.

For example, if you board an aircraft in Quesnel, British Columbia, we screen your baggage because you may well take a connecting flight to Japan. When you enter one of our 89 airports, then you are screened, and we have an equivalency of screening right across our 89 airports. We may not use the same equipment and we may have a different number of people, but you are screened when you enter the system. You are screened before you go into the specific holding rooms prior to boarding the commercial flight.

The Chairman: We understand that but when you describe the system, people who are watching this meeting on television assume that you are talking about all the aircraft, all planes and all the passengers. They do not realize that at major airports such as Edmonton, Calgary or Toronto, a significant portion of those airports — geographically, probably half the area of the airports — has nothing to do with what you refer to as ``the system.'' Is that correct, sir?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct. In terms of the definition of our responsibility, on an international basis, we were required to screen all international baggage by January 1 of this year. In Canada, we now screen 100 per cent of domestic and international baggage. We actually exceed requirements.

The Chairman: However, you screen none of it, if it comes into the general aviation part of the airport?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct.

The Chairman: When you say that we in Canada screen all the international baggage, you do not.

Mr. Duchesneau: More than that, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman: Is it correct?

Mr. Duncan: If it is a general aviation aircraft, that could be correct.

The Chairman: You could have a charter aircraft with 100 people landing at Pearson coming from any other country and you would not screen any of the baggage?

Mr. Duncan: It could not be a commercial flight. It would need an operating certificate, and to obtain an operating certificate on a scheduled flight, the flight would need to be screened.

The Chairman: That is correct but if they come in on a Boeing 737, they land and they go to a charter base —

Mr. Duncan: You are talking about a private flight, though. Is that correct?

The Chairman: I am talking about an aircraft where passengers pay to fly on that aircraft and you do not screen them. Is that correct, sir?

Mr. Duncan: That would be a private flight. If it was a charter flight on an international basis, there would be an operating certificate. Again, this is something that should be referred to Transport Canada, as opposed to it being our responsibility.

The Chairman: It is not a question of your responsibility. Do you screen them or not: yes or no?

Mr. Duncan: We do not screen private flights.

The Chairman: The private flights could include a Boeing 737 with 150 people on it landing in Toronto. Is that correct?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct but that would not be a charter or a unit toll. Passengers would not be able to purchase a ticket on that particular flight. It would have to be —

The Chairman: Someone with a credit card who could pick it up and take their friends —

Mr. Duncan: It would be a private flight. That is correct.

The Chairman: What per cent of the people who work around the planes in your system do you screen? You say you do it randomly. What percentage of those workers is screened?

Mr. Duncan: We have a non-passenger screening program installed now around the terminal buildings. Again, we are protecting the hold room where you, as a passenger, would pass through before you board a commercial flight. The workers are screened on a random basis in that area.

The Chairman: I understood that and asked you what percentage. You said you screen 100 per cent of the passengers there. What percentage of the workers there do you screen?

Mr. Duncan: We screen about 1,200 workers a day across the system. More than 100,000 people work in Canadian airports.

The Chairman: There are 100,000 and you screen how many?

Mr. Duncan: In 100 days, we screen 100 per cent.

The Chairman: How many do you screen every shift, please?

Mr. Duncan: Every day, we screen 1,200 people.

The Chairman: You screen 1,200 out of 100,000 every day?

Mr. Duncan: That is correct.

The Chairman: That works out to 1.2 per cent.

Mr. Duncan: Or in 100 days, in theory, everyone is screened.

The Chairman: Okay.

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, not all 105,000, to be precise, work on a daily basis. These are people who hold a pass. How many workers are there on a daily basis across the system? I do not think we can tell you that; we do not have the exact numbers. With the restricted area identification card system, RAICS, that we are implementing, there will be 105,000 employees with such a card.

Senator Banks: Staying on that question, for a moment, I am interested in the process of ``random.'' If 10 on-site workers are waiting to go through this access point to the air side, to the tarmac, to work on airplanes, to deliver food, to clean and fuel airplanes, or whatever, are all 10 workers searched every few days or are three of those 10 workers searched every day? In other words, how do you select what ``random'' means?

Kevin McGarr, Vice-President and Chief Technology Officer, Canadian Air Transport Security Authority: ``Random'' is random both in location and in time for the staffing of the screening point. The screening operations are conducted on what is referred to as a continuously busy process. As screening officers screen a non-passenger, once they are completed they will normally select the next non-passenger for screening. If a group of 10 were to arrive, it would depend on how long it would take to screen the first person before screening officers selected the next.

Senator Banks: The second, third and fourth person might gain access while the first one is screened?

Mr. McGarr: That is exact.

Senator Banks: It is a combination of all of the above. If we are to bother screening anyone, be it on-site workers or non-passengers, it is obvious that it is in the interests of security to screen everyone all the time. That would be the optimum. You said, Mr. Duchesneau, that you screen workers to the extent that it is cost efficient. Where is that balance? Where does it become too costly to ensure our safety by screening on-site workers? Who makes that determination, Transport Canada?

Mr. Duchesneau: Once again, we receive our budget through appropriation. We must present that budget to Transport Canada and then to the minister.

Senator Banks: The 1,200 number is a function of budget as much as anything?

Mr. Duchesneau: It is one criterion that we must look at for sure.

Senator Banks: We have looked at the identity card that is given, which has biometric information and a picture as well. That card is an improvement, but it does not do all the things that present extant technology would permit such a card to do, for example, by way of determining what part of an airport a given card holder is in, whether they belong to that airport and whether different levels of access are granted. Everyone is familiar with the rock and roll test: access all areas or not. Why was that available technology, which exists and is in use elsewhere, not incorporated into the present card system being rolled out to on-site workers?

Mr. McGarr: The card has been developed and is being implemented currently. It is compatible with those technologies. We have conducted tests with airport authorities to ensure that the card can be used as an enhancement to technology such as those that are available if the airport authority chooses to use that type of technology. However, that test relates to access control within the airport perimeter. As my colleague, Mr. Duncan stated, that access control is absolute jurisdiction of the airport authority.

Senator Banks: Does that make sense? Again, we are talking about inconsistency. Why should an airport, however well intended they are, be able to say, ``We know that would be a good idea, as you have determined, in the interests of the safety of Canadians, but we will not be able to do that.'' Does that make sense?

Mr. McGarr: I do not think I can comment on the reasoning behind choice of technologies to secure the perimeter.

Senator Banks: I am not talking about the airport's choice; I am talking about the regime which allows the airport to make that choice.

Mr. McGarr: Again, senator, our work was restricted to the development and implementation of the program, with two primary objectives. The first was to include biometric technologies within the card, to ensure that the person presenting the card is the same person enrolled in the access control program. We thereby confirm the identity of the individual.

The second objective of the program was to ensure that at the moment of presentation the card is linked to a valid security clearance that is issued by Transport Canada. We do that by synchronizing with a centralized database to ensure that at the moment of presentation, the card is in fact valid and linked to a security clearance issued by Transport Canada.

Senator Banks: Is it correct that the extent to which the card and cardholder is checked is up to the individual airport, and may differ from airport A to airport B?

Mr. McGarr: That is not exactly correct, senator, because we have defined the equipment to be used when the card is used to gain access to the restricted area. The equipment is standard across the country.

Senator Banks: The equipment may be standard, but is the frequency and consistency with which it is used the same in all 89 major airports in Canada?

Mr. McGarr: The restricted area identification card is deployed currently at the 29 major airports. It is consistent across those 29 airports that every time a person accesses the restricted area the card is verified.

Senator Banks: That is every time?

Mr. McGarr: It is verified by same equipment.

The Chairman: The nub of the problem here, Mr. Duchesneau, is what I describe as an almost diabolical design. You are here and you are responsible with your colleagues for implementing a limited aspect of the program. You take direction from Transport Canada, which provides you with legislation that governs them and regulations that govern you. Here are two groups of airports — 29 in one case and 89 in the broader case — that in turn have a fair amount of autonomy. We look at the picture from the point of view of the passenger and ask, ``Who is in charge here?'' The answer always comes back: ``Well, he is.'' That does not make much sense, frankly.

Senator Moore has a question. I am his pitchman.

Senator Moore: The chairman almost took the question from me.

Having heard your responses to the questions of Senator Banks, and in view of what our chairman has just described, in a perfect world what would you like to see? We have Transport Canada setting policies, and the airport authorities running each airport. The airport authorities can fit under these guidelines that Mr. Duncan spoke about as they see fit. The airport authorities must be consistent, but they seem to have a fair bit of autonomy.

CATSA designs the card. It is owned by the airport authority. It is an important document, yet there may not be standardization across even the 29 major airports as to ownership, control and issuance. In a perfect world, what would you like to see that would meet some of what you have described as your agile goals to give more comfort to the travelling public in Canada?

Mr. Duchesneau: You have good questions. I hope I can provide good answers.

Mr. Chairman, further to your comments, I have come to realize that we are a victim of our name. You are right: The public thinks that the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority is in charge of everything. That is not the case. We are limited to six mandates and we try to do one good job managing these six mandates. I believe we have improved the quality of security since we were created.

However, we are in partnership with others. I remember talking with this committee a couple of years ago. I took one of your ideas, Mr. Chairman, with regard to using radio frequency identification, RFID, on our card. We listened and convinced one airport — Montreal — to run a test. The airport did it. Itis not our responsibility, but I conveyed your message. I do not have the results of these tests, but we have seen them. It worked. However, it is not our responsibility. We try to help. We give the airports the card and we see what the end result will be. We listen to the comments. I know you have concerns about that.

Senator Moore: This would be part of the perfect world.

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes, it would.

Senator Moore: What is the one thing that you could have under authority now that might give you more comfort? Is it the card? There must be one or two things that would make your unit more accurately a Canadian authority, which is what the public, as you have said, thinks you are.

Mr. Duchesneau: You must have heard about the incidents in Montreal.

Senator Moore: Please go back to my question.

Mr. Duchesneau: We received blows on that because of our name. We answered, and I told you in my opening remarks that we need to inform the public.

Senator Moore: It is not good for you to tell the public you are not in charge.

Mr. Duchesneau: It is not good.

Senator Moore: You talk about education. You somehow need more authority. We are here to hear from you. This committee makes recommendations to both Houses of Parliament.

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, we have written 21 position papers on how we see the perfect world in aviation security. These papers can be made available to you. They were written to help the five-year review panel. When CATSA was created, it was stipulated that the minister table a report by March 31 of next year.

The Chairman: Give a brief summary for Senator Moore.

Mr. Duchesneau: The Canadian Air Transport Security Authority Act states that the minister must come up with a plan in five years as to how we see CATSA in the future. Will there be a CATSA? If so, what kind of CATSA will it be? What has CATSA done over the last five years? What things could be improved?

To prepare the testimony we gave to the five-year review panel, we prepared 21 position papers, looking at all our business lines to see how we could improve what was done. Obviously, Mr. Chairman, these documents can be made available to you. Things need to be changed, but we do not have an antagonistic relationship with Transport Canada. As accountable executives, we need to come up with ideas that enhance the system that is already there. We work with them on a regular basis.

Senator Moore: I am a new member of this committee. Can you briefly summarize the main points in your recommendations? Maybe that is part of the answer to my perfect world question.

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, we need more layers. We know one thing. We have learned, as you did, that terrorists are not static. They evolve all the time. If we screen in 2006 the same way we did in 2002, we would be wrong. We have improved the system. One improvement is adding layers to evolve with the nature of the threat.

Senator Moore: By ``layers,'' do you mean more checkpoints?

Mr. Duchesneau: I mean more checkpoints, maybe new equipment and doing things differently.

We reacted to the incidents on August 10, for instance, because the threat then was liquids and gels. We quickly reacted with Transport Canada. Transport Canada was the lead, and we ensured that the ideas and the regulations that were put forward were well executed. We received a phone call at three in the morning. By 3:30, our operations centre was open, and before the first flight took off from a Canadian airport the same day, we had new regulations in place. That is what we think partnership is all about. They work hard in putting this new regulation in place, and we work as hard to ensure that we can implement it.

That is one example. I can give you many others. Our view is that from the time a person makes a reservation to go anywhere, until the person arrives at the destination, we need to add value to the security of this country. When a person leaves a Canadian airport, we want to ensure the person goes to the destination freely, so we think about customer service, for instance.

That is why partners such as airlines and airports are so important. We work together. We are trying not to implement measures that will annoy passengers because we think passengers are our best allies. We have dozens of examples of passengers not feeling safe boarding a plane because someone reacted in a funny way. The passengers came to us. I am a firm believer in community policing. We discussed this before. It is not only an agency such as CATSA that can implement better security; we also need to work together. That is why we welcome coming here to this committee.

Senator Moore: Again, the passengers came to you. They came to CATSA.

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

Senator Moore: Therefore, you are our people. Whether or not you have the authority, the travelling public sees you as being the regulatory agency in the airport, the go-to team there.

Would it not be better if you had the control and the issuance of the card, in a perfect world? It makes sense to me. I do not know anything about security. I am a novice at this. It looks to me as if that would be an easy thing, and it would make sense.

Mr. Duchesneau: I will start the answer, and my colleagues will complete it.

Senator Moore: I am not here to ask questions that will put you in an adversarial situation with Transport Canada or the airport operators. I am trying to find out what is the most efficient, most secure manner of doing these things.

Mr. Duchesneau: I am not threatened by the questions this morning. On the contrary, we elevate the standards. We are all seeking the same thing, which is better security.

I have been asked that question many times. It is not a question of structure but of people working together. I come from police work, as the chair mentioned. There was a time when if you had information, you would hold on to it. You made sure you kept it, but these times are past. Today, from what I see, and from what we saw on August 10, which is the best example I can give you, we work together, not only with our regulator but also with the airports, airlines and the police services. We received plenty of information. That is the new way of doing business.

Senator Moore: In a perfect world, then, is everything great? I have not heard about any changes or suggestions. It sounds to me as if the status quo is fine.

Mr. Duchesneau: I gave you some areas where we can improve.

The Chairman: Is it a good idea to inspect all trucks coming into the airport, yes or no?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes, we are looking at that issue with Transport Canada.

The Chairman: Right now they are not, and it would be a good idea if they were. That is one perfect world.

In a perfect world, is it a good idea to check mail before it goes onto a commercial aircraft?

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, once again, it is a question of policy. I obviously have opinions.

The Chairman: It is perfect-world time.

Mr. Duchesneau: Security is a question of tradeoffs.

The Chairman: If you check the baggage, Mr. Duchesneau, does it not make sense, if the next sack is mail, to check it too?

Mr. Duchesneau: How can I answer no to that?

The Chairman: Then just say yes.

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

The Chairman: In a perfect world, when the police tell you organized criminals are in an airport, does it not make sense that every person who is working on the tarmac is inspected every day, not 1,200?

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, I do not want to go into policy, and I am not trying to dodge the question. That would be the worst thing for me to do this morning. However, I can assure you of one thing: we have raised the bar over the last four years.

The Chairman: I do not doubt that, Mr. Duchesneau. I think that is true.

Senator Moore: We want to help you take it higher.

The Chairman: Would it not be good to go from inspecting 1200 workers, where you shift from entrance to entrance, to inspection at every entrance so you can inspect every passenger and every worker? Is that a good idea or not in a perfect world?

Mr. Duchesneau: It is a good idea.

The Chairman: In a perfect world, would it be a good idea if airports were consistent in how they applied the policies across the country?

Mr. Duchesneau: Consistency has been, over the last four and a half years, one of the main focuses of CATSA. We want people to board a plane anywhere in Canada and feel that they are treated the same way.

The Chairman: If we talk to pilots and the pilots' organization about how they are searched, would they tell us they are treated in a consistent fashion: yes or no?

Mr. Duchesneau: I do not know how they would react. I can have an opinion, but I do not know for a fact.

The Chairman: Are they treated in a consistent fashion from one airport to another? Do you know the answer to that?

Mr. Duchesneau: No, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman: You do not know the answer?

Mr. Duchesneau: I know. I said no, Mr. Chairman. They are not treated —

The Chairman: They are not treated the same way. In a perfect world, would Canadians be safer if the general aviation area was included, and CATSA officials inspected people there who are boarding the aircraft, as we have over at the main terminal?

Mr. Duchesneau: The worst answer I can give you is to say that we want to expand our mandate. We need to focus on the six mandates that were given to us. You should have that discussion with the minister who sets the policies with cabinet and Transport Canada.

The Chairman: I have had that discussion with the minister. I am asking you. In a perfect world, if we wanted a secure airport, would we include the general aviation?

Mr. Duchesneau: My answer to all these questions is, because you are good at asking questions — I have to give you credit, and it is hot on this seat as I speak to you now — we need to think. We cannot be fishermen waiting for the fish to come. We need to be hunters. Hunters have to be one step ahead. They need to track the bad guys.

My answer to all these specific questions is that we need to be one step ahead of terrorists all the time and take any steps to do that. We cannot be in a reacting mode. We need to be proactive. That answer summarizes all the questions that I know you still have, but that is a broad answer to all the questions, Mr. Chairman.

Senator St. Germain: I have been a policeman, as Mr. Duchesneau has. You are putting him on the hot seat. Maybe you are justified in doing this as chairman of the committee, or as a member of the committee. However, would it not be nice to check every vehicle on the street to ensure no crimes take place? That is what you are asking him. I am sure he has budgetary constraints. In an ideal world, with respect to policing, you are only as good as the citizenry you police.

The Chairman: What is your question, senator?

Senator St. Germain: I asked him a question about budgetary constraints.

The Chairman: The tax has been reduced twice now, and, presumably, there has been a reason for the tax being reduced twice. I know you are aware of that.

Senator St. Germain: Yes, I am. However, when we ask these questions in regard to checking everybody, there is also the aspect of the bad guys. When you check everybody continually, they prepare for it.

That is my opinion. I ask you, sir, do you concur with what I am saying? I am entitled to ask this question because it relates to the questions you were asking.

The Chairman: Then I will not recognize you and we will go ahead.

Senator St. Germain: Do whatever you want. You are the chairman.

The Chairman: In fairness, we have raised the questions before, and we have covered them before. We have taken evidence from the police about the organized crime groups that are there and we know taxes have been reduced.

Senator Atkins: I have only one question: Would it not be better if Transport Canada gave you the authority over the airport authorities to implement the guidelines and the process that would be important to do your job?

Mr. Duchesneau: Once again, I do not think it is a question of structure. If we work closely the way we do now with Transport Canada, I do not see any problem. They have their problems. It is not easy to make regulations to suit everything. We are talking about random screening. As an example, maybe random screening is one good way of doing things because we focus on the right people. Currently, we screen 100 per cent of passengers: senators to 80-year-old grannies. Should we focus on these people for the same length of time that we give to people who could represent threats? That question needs to be asked.

How much security is too much? Once again, if we screen 39 million passengers every year and we annoy 38 million of them, we lose one important layer of protection. We have seen passengers come forward regularly. I will give you an anecdote that summarizes what we mean.

One passenger wanted to bring his parachute on board. A parachute is not on a prohibited item list, but it annoys other passengers. Other passengers came forward and said they would not board the plane if this passenger kept his parachute with him. We have developed that relationship with passengers. I think it is important that we continue to get full support.

What is predictable and what is unpredictable? We plan for the predictable: what we have known and the information that we receive from other parts of the world. However, to face the unpredictable, we need to know how to manage it. That is why we have drills all the time. We will conduct table-top exercises with airlines and airports soon in order to be one step ahead of the bad guys.

Senator Atkins: With all the discussion this morning, I feel there is a disconnect between the airport authorities and CATSA in terms of dealing, for instance, with the identification card. Why should there be?

Mr. Duchesneau: If I gave this impression, then I made a mistake. I did not testify properly, because that is not the reality. We work closely with the airports. We all work according to whatever regulation is in place. We try to do our best to ensure that we give the best service possible, keeping in mind that security must be our number 1 priority. Can we improve it? Absolutely, we can. You are totally right.

Every time I come out of this committee we have work to do. There are things that we need to look at closely in order to improve. We do that with our regulator.

Senator Atkins: Is there anything Transport Canada can do to make your job easier and more efficient?

Mr. Duchesneau: That is a good question.

They did one great thing. The minister back then who put the five-year review panel together succeeded in having knowledgeable people listen carefully, and we are waiting for their report to be tabled soon. That was a good exercise. It helped us look at our business lines and see, as Senator Moore said, in a perfect world, how we could improve the system. We have done that.

Senator Atkins: In your opening statement you say, ``We believe that such a system should be threat- and risk-based rather than rules-based.'' Can you explain that?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes, with great pleasure. I read a book lately on Osama bin Laden, and the book talked about al- Qaeda, which is proud to say it is not rules-based but risk-based. Members try to avoid being arrested or killed. They do not abide by rules; they go with the flow and try to learn how to prevent any arrests, et cetera. The same thing needs to be done with an organization like ours. Even though we need regulations, we cannot work with stringent regulations all the time because we become predictable. If we become predictable then we become vulnerable.

If the bad guys know that we screen every man between the age of 20 and 30, they will have suicide bombers who are 40.

Senator Moore: This was Senator St. Germain's point.

Mr. Duchesneau: That is exactly the point. I use the comment to give the best answer I can.

Why is it that when I was chief of police in Montreal with a population of about 2 million, people accepted that we could have 40 murders a year? Why is it that when we screen 39 million people every year, my leeway is none? One casualty is one too many. I cannot fail. We will not fail. That is why we put these measures in place.

That is why we recently came from a tour of the country. We met with the front-line screeners to instill the ideas that we have in mind: we have a tough job to do, security is priority number 1, but we can do it with a smile.

The Chairman: Mr. Duchesneau, you do not release the results of your penetration tests. You say you cannot fail once, yet you know the system fails on a regular basis. The Department of Transport tests it on a regular basis and you have a significant failure rate. It is ongoing, and you do not release the figures to the public. The Department of Transport refuses to release them. We have proposed that they be released six months or some period of time after the fact so that taxpayers and the public can verify whether you are making progress.

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, there may be layers that fail. That is why we have a multi-layered system. We cannot guarantee that with one single aspect of the system we will be 100 per cent effective. It is impossible. No one can say that.

The Chairman: You have it measured on a regular basis and the measurements are not made available to people.

Mr. Duchesneau: Mr. Chairman, we assess individuals, not the system. If we were in an in-camera session, I would give you numbers: not infiltration test numbers, but numbers — how many tests are done compared with the whole system. It is one indicator. However, we have 18 other indicators that show we are doing a good job.

Senator Atkins: In the United States the screeners are all federal employees. In this country many of them at airports are under contract. Can you tell me how many airports are under contract?

Mr. Duchesneau: It is 100 per cent.

Senator Atkins: There are no direct employees of CATSA?

Mr. Duchesneau: No, Mr. Chairman. I can also refer you to a U.S. General Accounting Office, GAO, study, which is the Office of the Auditor General, OAG, in Canada. The study compared airports with federal employees to those with private screeners, and efficiency is the same. There are no significant differences between the two.

It has nothing to do with who one works for: it has to do with the dedication one puts into the job. I can assure you that we have toured the country, and we have discovered that the people performing this job across the country at present are, in my opinion, the most dedicated people I have had the occasion to work with.

Is the system perfect? That is the last thing I will tell you. Can we improve it? We absolutely can.

Senator Atkins: Are we talking about all 89 airports across the country?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

Senator Atkins: Please tell me about the training. How long does it presently take to train a screener?

Mr. Duchesneau: We tripled the length of time for the training of screeners. They receive on-the-job training, which consists of roughly 200 hours of training on equipment. That training has been enhanced recently.

The training we provided in 2002 compared with the training we provide today is totally different, so much so that the International Civil Aviation Organization, ICAO, wanted to use our training program to set the standard for international training of other countries.

Once again, and I am not intending to brag here, this training is something to be proud of. The Canadian way has been recognized around the world as probably one way of conducting our business.

Senator Atkins: Since your last appearance before this committee, what is your estimation of the increase in budget between then and now?

Mr. Duchesneau: Are you asking about our budget?

Senator Atkins: Yes.

Mr. Duchesneau: We underspent in the first years as a result of deployment.

Within a five-year program, as originally planned, we will be right on target with the budget. We may spend $100 million to $200 million more than planned because new measures have been put in place and we were given two other mandates, the restricted area identification card and non-passenger screening.

We accomplished more within roughly the same budget, which was originally $1.942 billion. That figure is presently at $2.1 billion over five years. Half that figure consists of mainly equipment and the installation of same at airports.

Senator Moore: Did you say $1.942 billion per year?

Mr. Duchesneau: No: That is a total over five years.

Senator Atkins: In terms of inventory, do all screeners wear CATSA uniforms?

Mr. Duchesneau: Yes.

Senator Atkins: What does your control system consist of for uniforms and distribution?

Mr. Duncan: You are making reference to badges that were lost, and they were reported as 90 uniforms gone missing. Ninety pieces of uniform were reported missing, and 60 of those consisted of little metal badges that fell off. We have changed the uniform. The badges have been sewn directly into the uniforms, solving that issue.

We have put in strict controls right from shipping. We have uniform representatives at each of our locations. We have also enacted a $900 fee if the uniform is not returned, which tends to give us a 100 per cent return. The only items we lose now are shirts that are lost at the dry cleaners and things of that nature.

Senator Atkins: Where is the central distribution located?

Mr. Duncan: We have a Montreal-based supplier, who also supplies the Canadian Forces from a number of other locations.

The Chairman: To conclude on the topic of random screening, 1,200 per day, the screen moves from one location to another. The understanding we have is that when the location moves, cell phones are used by ground crew to indicate where the screening is taking place.

Baggage handlers have come to us to indicate that if they want to move something in or out, they can accomplish that by simply telling a colleague on the phone where the screening is taking place. How do you defeat that from happening?

Mr. McGarr: Within the context of a random program completed within the air terminal building, as it is currently accomplished, is extremely difficult. As you can imagine, news spreads relatively quickly within the community. However, that is with an understanding of a potential outcome that the program was developed for, and the random approach was considered appropriate for the threat level that was addressed.

The Chairman: Is there a study you can share with us with respect to what you have just stated?

Mr. McGarr: A study pertaining to what?

The Chairman: A study demonstrating that the randomness is covered off and protects people who can phone from one location to another.

Essentially, we are told that if there are gates A, B and C, and random screening is being conducted at gate A, it is common for ground crew simply to phone their colleagues and inform them to go through gate B or C if they do not want to be searched.

Mr. McGarr: I will not contest that possibility.

The Chairman: We are were also told by these same people with the cell phones that the day we went to visit, you doubled the number of screeners at the gate we looked at. Is that true? You were there, Mr. Duncan.

Mr. Duncan: We doubled the number of screeners?

The Chairman: Yes: We were told you went from one screener to two.

Mr. Duncan: I am sure that must have been as a result of your visit. I was not aware it had doubled.

The Chairman: We were not aware, either. We assumed you had the normal number of people screening. When we left, we received a call informing us that usually there is only one person screening and they put two there for our visit.

Mr. McGarr: Normally the screening is conducted by a team of two officers.

The Chairman: I felt I should ask about that.

Senator Banks: I have questions about the cards, Mr. McGarr. You mentioned the capacity of using global positioning system, GPS, exists in the present system. I forgot to pursue that.

Could GPS be instituted in the present system using the existing cards, or would a whole new set have to be issued?

Mr. McGarr: No: Currently the cards we are using have two frequencies of communication. The type of tracking to which you refer to locate an individual within a defined area uses a third type of communication.

The two types of communication currently in the card that we tested do not interfere with the third capability if it was enabled by the airport authority.

The technologies we have deployed would be compatible inasmuch as they would not conflict with the technical requirements for additional security measures.

Senator Banks: Could that area identification capacity be installed in the existing cards, or would that capacity require an issuance of new cards, or the issuance of a second piece of identification with that third capability on it?

Mr. McGarr: There are two possibilities within that scenario. Readers, antennas, could be used to read the frequency currently within the card as used in some airports for what is referred to as proximity technology. However, to use a long-range RFID would require additional technology.

Senator Banks: Therefore, the solution is issuing either another card or a new card with that technology built into it, which is theoretically possible?

Mr. McGarr: Yes: The tests we completed involved creating a card holder. The case became the long-range technology, whereas the card consisted of close range.

Senator Banks: With respect to the card, if I work at Toronto Island Airport and get a card — no that is a bad example, because it is not one of the 29 airports.

Mr. McGarr: It is actually.

Senator Banks: If I have a card issued there, does that take me any place on site at Pearson International Airport?

Mr. McGarr: It could. Two main types of cards are issued. One is the regular restricted area identification card that is airport-specific. That card would be useful only at Toronto Island Airport, in your example. However, we also have a multiple airport pass.

Senator Banks: What kind of people have that?

Mr. McGarr: This card is given to air crew that require the credential at more than one airport, mechanics that service aircraft or people who are able to demonstrate both the right and the requirement to access restricted areas at more than one airport. They are eligible for a multiple airport pass and the multiple airport pass has the technical capability of being used at more than one site.

Senator Banks: Can in be used at all 29 airports?

Mr. McGarr: It could, in theory, if all 29 granted access rights to that individual. However, the pass does not give a person automated access rights without the airport authority first granting those rights.

Senator Banks: That is up to the individual airport?

Mr. McGarr: It is up to the individual airport to decide whether the automated access rights will be granted to that individual, yes, sir.

The Chairman: Does that apply to every pilot? Does the airport provide access to every pilot that might fly in?

Mr. McGarr: The pilots receive what is referred to as an air crew pass, which is a multiple airport pass, but as you stated earlier, some airports require pilots to present themselves to a pre-board screening point and some airports allow certain card holders to use bypass access points to the restricted area. That is the airport's prerogative.

The Chairman: Who issues the air crew passes?

Mr. McGarr: The individual airports do and normally the airport that is the home base issues the pass.

However, before any airport can issue a card, a check is made with CATSA through a centralized database to ensure there are no duplicate entries and there is a valid security clearance in place for that individual. An airport does not have the technical ability to issue a card before we basically unlock the enrolment process for that individual. Normally, the home base of the crew person would issue a crew pass indicating that pass-holder would have access to restricted areas at many different airports.

The Chairman: Would a crew pass that was issued in Edmonton be good in any of the 89 airports?

Mr. McGarr: If the person is able to compare their biometric, yes. If there is a match of the biometrics, the pass is valid at the moment of presentation, and a check is made with our centralized database. Then that crew pass is considered a document of entitlement to access the restricted area, yes, sir.

The Chairman: How do you check people from outside the country? How you do check a pilot from American Airlines?

Mr. McGarr: I believe that they are directed towards pre-board screening to be screened as any other passenger is.

Senator Moore: On a point of clarification, you mentioned all 89. Does the pass cover all 89 airports or only 29?

Mr. McGarr: It covers the 29 major airports, senator.

Senator Banks: Finally, on that point, CATSA can issue passes and home airports can issue passes. Can anyone else issue passes?

Mr. McGarr: No, only the airport can issue the pass, but we enable the enrolment process, so there is a check and balance, but all passes are issued by the airport authorities.

Senator Banks: All passes?

Mr. McGarr: All the restricted area identification cards are issued by the airport authorities.

The Chairman: That time has come. It always seems to come quickly. Mr. Duncan, do you have information to share with us?

Mr. Duncan: I can find nothing specifically mentioned in the regulations with respect to pilots. I add only that the multiple airport pass is a layer of security. A pilot that goes through a restricted area is positively confirmed that the pilot is, in fact, the individual on that card, and this layer of security needs to be taken into consideration in terms of the Canadian approach.

The Chairman: We understand that. We think the biometric is a useful tool in ensuring that the person who holds the card is in fact the right person. The reason why the committee has focused so much on the concept of geo-fencing is because the committee has received evidence of people, who were who they said they were, moving around the airport at times when they should not have been there and using their ability to access the code numbers and their capacity to have the cards to move contraband in and out of airport. We consider this problem to be serious. We do not feel that the current design of the passes addresses that.

I am sure you do not feel that the current design addresses it either, Mr. McGarr?

Mr. McGarr: The passes are a significant enhancement to the security at the point of entry to the restricted area, but are used only at that point of entry and currently are not used at all to control movement within the area.

The Chairman: Do they control whether a person is authorized to be there at a particular time? Are they there during shift or off shift?

Mr. McGarr: That is within the capability of the airport authority to institute that type of control.

The Chairman: You do not know if they are doing it, do you?

Mr. McGarr: No, we do not. We respect the airport authority's jurisdiction with respect to access control.

The Chairman: We bring it up because people who have smuggled drugs in and out of airports tell us that they exploit this. That is why it is of some concern to us; if drug smugglers can use it, so can terrorists.

On that upbeat note we look forward to receiving the report when it comes forward and undoubtedly we will ask you to come back to comment on it at that time. Today, we appreciate your coming before the committee.

We have before us today Assistant Commissioner Raf Souccar, Federal and International Operations, Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Mr. Souccar joined the RCMP in 1977 and began his career in drug enforcement. He was promoted to his current rank in 2005 and was given responsibility for the RCMP's Federal and International Operations. In this capacity, he is responsible for the financial crime, border integrity, drugs and organized crime, and international policing programs, as well as federal strategic services. Mr. Souccar last appeared before the committee earlier in October. He is accompanied by Mike Cabana, Chief Superintendent, Federal and International Operations, Director General Border Integrity, RCMP.

Welcome, gentlemen. We look forward to your opening statement.

Assistant Commissioner Raf Souccar, Federal and International Operations, Royal Canadian Mounted Police: Honourable senators, I am pleased to appear before the committee with my colleague, Mr. Mike Cabana. As Director General Border Integrity, Mr. Cabana is directly responsible for, among other things, marine security, Integrated Border Enforcement Teams and airport security.

The Marine and Ports Branch focuses on national security with a mandate to target terrorist groups and organized crime networks that might utilize Canada's seaports, coastlines, waterways and marine borders as a conduit for their activities. There is no question that our area of responsibility is large, because Canada's marine geography is vast as is the volume of traffic moving through it. Approximately 3.5 million containers pass through Canadian ports each year, and 60 per cent of them either originate from or are destined to the United States.

The Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway system stretches 3,700 kilometres, from west of Montreal to Thunder Bay, through a region containing the highest population density in Canada. The bays and inlets along the route are too numerous to count. The RCMP has taken an integrated approach to these challenges and is an active member of the Interdepartmental Marine Security Working Group under Transport Canada.

The IMSWG provides an important forum for identifying and coordinating federal government marine security actions in support of Canada's objectives. It is key in paving the way forward for enhancing marine security initiatives, building partnerships, identifying gaps and finding solutions. As a result of its work, four pillars have been identified as necessary components in enhancing marine security — specifically, domain awareness, response, collaboration and safeguarding. It should be noted that these four pillars are effective only when they are working together. In other words, those mandated to protect Canada's marine environment need to know what is out there, need response capability to intervene and interdict, need an inventory of critical infrastructure and contingency plans for addressing marine security and need coordination across government departments.

This is crucial because no one agency can effectively deal with all the threats that we face. The only approach that can work is one that is integrated, interdepartmental, collaborative and cooperative. This is a huge challenge, but given the urgency of our mission it is critical. Securing our marine environment from potential terrorist threats and sophisticated organized crime groups calls for improving coordination, exploring new opportunities and taking part in innovative joint ventures. I am encouraged that Canada is taking a multi-layered approach to marine security under the tutelage of the IMSWG.

I wish to provide the committee with a brief background on the Marine and Ports Branch of the RCMP. In 2002, the Government of Canada provided funding to the RCMP over five years for marine security programs. The funding provided to the RCMP contributed to establishing the National Port Enforcement Teams, NPETs, training emergency response teams to conduct marine operations and conducting security checks relating to port employees.

Two years later, in April 2004, the Government of Canada announced a six-point action plan with additional funding for national security initiatives. Through the action plan, the Department of National Defence was assigned lead responsibility for the creation of Marine Security Operation Centres, MSOCs, on the East and West Coasts. The RCMP and other federal agencies partner in these MSOCs.

In the budget of 2005, the Government of Canada announced additional funding to enhance the security of Canada's marine transportation system and maritime borders. This new financial support helped us to develop and enhance five marine security initiatives to further strengthen marine integration among federal, provincial and municipal partners. These initiatives are in various stages of development, but they share a common thread — specifically, targeting, disrupting and eliminating threats from organized crime and potential terrorist threats. I shall describe each entity briefly.

The National Port Enforcement Teams are integrated multi-disciplinary, intelligence-led teams located in the ports of Halifax, Montreal and Vancouver. They focus on national security and organized crime investigation. These teams have recently been expanded to include more personnel as well as a new team, which will be placed at the Port of Hamilton in 2007.

Our MSOCs, as indicated earlier, have been established on the East and West Coasts and are led by the Department of National Defence. Drawing from the design and experience of the Department of National Defence, the RCMP has established an interim MSOC in the Niagara region for coordinating marine information on the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway. By bringing together civilian and military interagency staff, the three MSOCs not only provide a much clearer marine picture through intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance information but also through the mandate and capacity to detect, assess and assist in providing a coordinated approach to marine security threats. In other words, the MSOCs cast a wide marine security net.

The Marine Security Enforcement Teams began operating on the Great Lakes in July 2005. These integrated teams are staffed with members from provincial and municipal departments along with the RCMP, working on Canadian Coast Guard vessels alongside Canadian Coast Guard personnel. The primary role of the MSETs is to safeguard and address federal on-water enforcement requirements and to provide an armed fast response capacity to address potential threats. Currently, there are three dedicated interim vessels that also service as platforms for Marine Security Emergency Response Teams, MSERTs. The MSET initiative involves the procurement and deployment of four permanent vessels on the Great Lakes. Their rollout will begin in 2009-10.

The MSERTs provide a tactical police response to critical events within the domestic marine environment. Two new specialty trained integrated teams being established in Montreal and Toronto will have marine intervention capability for responding to highly critical and time-sensitive situations on the Great Lakes and on the St. Lawrence Seaway.

The National Waterside Security Coordination Team conducts research to identify vulnerabilities by consulting with law enforcement and government agencies at all levels. One of the main goals is developing a thorough grasp of the marine asset inventory owned and operated by the various agencies. This team, which comprises RCMP, provincial and municipal police officers, provides recommendations to close gaps and provide a coordinated and integrated solution to waterside security.

In closing, Mr. Chairman, the RCMP's Marine and Ports Branch Program also contributes to global marine security by working with American and other international law enforcement partners to protect the integrity of our shared waters. We are developing a memorandum of understanding with the U.S. Coast Guard to establish a permanent Coast Guard liaison officer within the Great Lakes Marine Security Operation Centre.

I reiterate that no one agency can fully secure the marine environment on its own. This must be an integrated cooperative undertaking. There is no question that the agencies tasked with protecting our marine environment are becoming more aware of how other departments work and what assets they can bring to bear. If we use the example of the five marine initiatives that I mentioned earlier, each one is integrated with other agencies and requires their input and cooperation. It is extremely important to have key stakeholders at the same table recognizing the strengths of each partner agency and bringing those to the forefront for our common goal — that is, a safer marine environment and, through it, a safer land and air environment.

As a result, we are seeing more and more examples where multi-agency coordination is making a difference. We are seeing successful operations at our ports and on our waters. However, we acknowledge that we must improve on this foundation. We will continue to examine opportunities, such as establishing permanent federal Marine Security Enforcement Teams dedicated to national security on the East and West Coasts, establishing permanent marine security emergency response capability on the East and West Coasts, establishing a permanent Great Lakes Marine Security Operation Centre. In support of the Government of Canada's commitment to re-instate policing at marine sports, the RCMP recognizes the need to work with the ports community, local officials and other stakeholders as a key element in enhancing security at our ports.

I thank the committee for allowing me to make these comments. My colleague and I are prepared to take any questions you may have.

The Chairman: Thank you very much, Mr. Souccar. We have a great interest in this subject, and the first questioner is Senator Moore.

Senator Moore: When you ran through the five initiatives, you spoke about cooperation, coordination and so on. I did not hear anything with regard to staffing of personnel. Could we go through the five from the beginning, and maybe you could indicate what personnel are there now and what you may hope for?

At page 5, you start with the National Port Enforcement Teams, the NPETs, and you said they are located in Halifax, Montreal and Vancouver. I am talking about the RCMP personnel in each of those locations. I would then ask you to run through the other four initiatives, for a total of five.

Mr. Souccar: I can certainly do that. If we start with the Marine Security Operation Centres, we have a total of eight full-time employees — three RCMP, one RCMP police officer, one civilian member —

The Chairman: I missed that. Which item are you on?

Mr. Souccar: On the MSOCs.

The Chairman: How about number one?

Senator Moore: Yes, start with the National Port Enforcement Teams.

Mr. Souccar: Certainly. At this point, we have six police officers in Montreal, six police officers in Vancouver, nine in Halifax and three in headquarters in a coordination role, as well as three public servants.

The Chairman: That is 25 in total. How many designated ports do we have? You have these three here, but there are 19 designated ports in Canada, are there not?

Mr. Souccar: That is correct.

The Chairman: For the 19 designated ports, you have 25 officers in total, concentrated in these three ports.

Mr. Souccar: Correct, with Hamilton coming on line in 2007-08.

The Chairman: But there are no people there now.

Mr. Souccar: No people there now, but as of this coming fiscal year, we will have nine in Hamilton. Then the numbers for Montreal will increase by two, to eight; the numbers in Vancouver will increase by two, also to eight; and the numbers in Halifax will remain as is. That is for the National Port Enforcement Teams.

The Chairman: But none for St. John's, Saint John and so on, for the other 19 ports?

Mr. Souccar: That is correct.

Senator Moore: Could we go then to the second initiative, the MSOCs, the Marine Security Operation Centres? Could you run through MSOC personnel at each location?

Mr. Souccar: With the MSOC, as I indicated earlier, the ones on the East and West Coasts are led by the Department of National Defence, and the one for the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway is an interim MSOC. We are hoping that it will be made permanent at some point. At this point, it is an interim location and has eight full-time employees.

The Chairman: It is in Halifax now, is it not? It is being run out of Halifax, not Niagara.

Mr. Souccar: No, it is out of Niagara. The interim one for the Great Lakes is out of the Niagara region.

The Chairman: The last time we took testimony on this, we were told that you got your picture out of Trinity.

Mr. Souccar: The East Coast MSOC has two dedicated Department of National Defence employees working out of the East Coast MSOC who provide the interim one in Niagara with the maritime picture.

The Chairman: I see.

Senator Banks: Is that where there are eight?

Mr. Souccar: No, in the Niagara one, we have eight.

The Chairman: But not yet?

Mr. Souccar: Yes.

The Chairman: You have them there now.

Mr. Souccar: Yes, they are there now.

Senator Moore: Of those eight, did you say three are RCMP?

Mr. Souccar: Three RCMP police officers, one civilian member and four military, DND, with two additional Department of National Defence working out of the East Coast MSOC, but dedicated solely to the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway, providing a maritime picture exclusively for that purpose.

The Chairman: Could you tell us the line that you use for the extent of the St. Lawrence Seaway? The committee has been arbitrarily using a line from Tadoussac to Pointe au Pic. Where is your line?

Chief Superintendent Mike Cabana, Federal and International Operations, Director General, Border Integrity, RCMP: Our line is at the St. Lambert Lock.

The Chairman: You start right at Montreal, and then you go where?

Mr. Cabana: Just west of Montreal.

The Chairman: Through to the lakehead?

Mr. Cabana: Yes.

The Chairman: Who has responsibility down past Trois Rivières, Quebec City and east?

Mr. Cabana: That would be the Atlantic MSOC.

The Chairman: What police personnel do you have taking care of that? Who is enforcing federal statutes outside of Quebec City on the river?

Mr. Cabana: At this point in time, we have a Marine Security Enforcement Team that patrols that area, with integrated teams comprised of Sûreté du Québec members and RCMP members on a Canadian Coast Guard platform.

The Chairman: Well, let us be clear about this, because last time we put this question to one of your colleagues, we were told that there were no RCMP on that part of the river enforcing federal statutes. How frequently does this platform move up and down and what sort of platform are you talking about?

Mr. Cabana: At this time, they are patrolling that area with the Lauzier, a Canadian Coast Guard vessel. As far as the actual specs for the vessel, I am not aware of them, sir.

The Chairman: Is the Lauzier tied up along the pier for the summer?

Mr. Cabana: That is not my understanding, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman: What is your understanding?

Mr. Cabana: My understanding is that the Lauzier is patrolling the St. Lawrence Seaway.

The Chairman: 24/7?

Mr. Cabana: No, Mr. Chairman, not 24/7. At present, I believe it is 10 hours, five days a week.

Mr. Souccar: The capacity is not there for 24/7 in terms of human resources. If the human resources were there, it would be capable of doing a 24/7 patrol.

Senator Moore: Vis-à-vis the Marine Security Enforcement Teams, you mentioned RCMP personnel but, again, what are the numbers and where are they based?

Mr. Souccar: At this point, the marine security enforcement team has 16 full-time employees; it includes the Ontario Provincial Police, the Niagara regional police, the Toronto Police Service and the Sûreté du Québec.

Senator Banks: Not RCMP?

Mr. Souccar: As well as RCMP — this is an integrated team.

The Chairman: Sixteen RCMP is what we were told.

Mr. Cabana: There are a total of 14 police officers that are responsible to take part in these patrols. At the present time, it is two police officers per patrol.

The Chairman: Two RCMP officers per patrol?

Mr. Cabana: Correct.

The Chairman: So there are eight patrols.

Mr. Cabana: No. At present, there are three vessels that are patrolling the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes. Because of shift scheduling, there have to be more resources than strictly six police officers, so it gives us a total of 14; the additional two resources are for coordination at the policy centre.

The Chairman: Then please tell the committee, if you would, how does it deliver out when you are looking at shifting? Are you able to have one vessel on one of the Great Lakes for eight hours a day, seven days a week? I guess we would take away Michigan as not being our responsibility. On the remaining Great Lakes, how many vessels do you have at any given time on a 24-hour basis?

Mr. Cabana: Again, Mr. Chairman, it depends on the intelligence that is available. The ships are deployed based on available intelligence, but at any given time the most that you will have on the Great Lakes are two vessels.

The Chairman: Do you currently have a real-time maritime picture of the vessels on the Great Lakes?

Mr. Cabana: At this time, we have a partial picture. The partial picture is being provided by the East Coast Marine Security Operation Centres. It is supplemented by intelligence that is received from the other border integrity units, such as the IBETs and to some extent the NPETs, as well as police of jurisdiction.

The Chairman: If we could stay away from the acronyms. Not all the people watching know what an IBET is, so if you could describe an IBET.

Mr. Cabana: IBETs are Integrated Border Enforcement Teams that are strategically located along the land border between ports of entry. I believe I made reference to the NPETs, which are the National Port Enforcement Teams, which are teams located at the present time in three of the major ports, with a fourth one, the Port of Hamilton, coming on line in 2007-08.

Senator Moore: There are currently three dedicated interim vessels that also serve as platforms for Marine Security Emergency Response Teams, or MSERTs. What are those three vessels? How big are they, and can they handle all kinds of weather?

Mr. Souccar: There are two Coast Guard vessels that are being used and one redeployed RCMP vessel, so there are three in all at this point being used as part of the Marine Security Enforcement Teams. They will be replaced by 140- foot vessels that are currently being built, which will come on line starting 2009-10.

Senator Moore: These are ocean-going Coast Guard ships, are they? We are not talking inflatables here but about ships, are we?

Mr. Cabana: We are speaking of vessels. Their capacity is less than the vessels that are presently being built. That is my understanding. For example, they do not have the 24-hour capability that the new vessels will have.

The Chairman: Of the vessels you have, one is a commissioner-class vessel, which has a speed of what?

Mr. Cabana: The commissioner-class vessel, I believe, has a speed of 30 knots.

The Chairman: The vessels have been described to us as essentially floating detachments rather than vessels for chasing somebody who is trying to smuggle something across the lake. Is that correct?

Mr. Souccar: The vessels are not at the level that we would like them to be in order to operate as effectively and efficiently as possible, and that is why we have new ones coming on line in 2009-10. This is the best we can do right now with what we have.

The Chairman: The Coast Guard vessels are buoy tenders, like the Griffon?

Mr. Cabana: The Coast Guard vessels are the Cape Hurd and the Lauzier.

The Chairman: The new vessels coming on will be assets belonging to the RCMP or to the Coast Guard?

Mr. Cabana: They will belong to the Coast Guard.

The Chairman: Will they have other duties besides border security? Do they tend buoys, break ice, or do other things?

Mr. Cabana: No. They will be dedicated for Marine Security Enforcement Teams, for patrols.

The Chairman: Will they be armed?

Mr. Souccar: The Royal Canadian Mounted Police officers and other law enforcement officers that are on those ships will be armed. The Canadian Coast Guard, as you know, is not armed.

The Chairman: Will you have something in addition to your sidearms and rifles? Will there be weapons mounted on the deck?

Mr. Souccar: I do not have the answer to that at this point. Mr. Cabana may. I do not think you will see what you see south of the border.

The Chairman: Could you come back to us with what sort of armament will be available on the new vessels?

Mr. Souccar: Sure. My understanding is that they will not have.50 calibre machine guns, for example, mounted in the same way as you see south of the border.

The Chairman: Something larger?

Could you tell something about the speed and sustainability of the vessels? Can you stay out on them overnight, 24 hours? Could you tell us the range of them, how large a crew is necessary to operate them, how many police officers can be carried on them, and their capability to board other craft.

Senator Banks: Did you say they were 140 feet long?

Mr. Souccar: Yes.

Senator Banks: How many will there be?

Mr. Souccar: Four, the first one coming on line in 2009-10.

The Chairman: Will they be built with equipment to enhance the real-time maritime picture and will it be fed back into Marine Security Operation Centres? In other words, will they have the capacity to extend and enhance the picture that you get at the MSOCs?

Mr. Souccar: Every asset we have out there enhances the picture that we get at the MSOCs. Intelligence or information comes in and it is sifted through, and intelligence comes out and goes back. It flows two ways. The more vessels we have out there, the more capable they are and the longer they are there, the more information we can get.

The Chairman: Could you describe this? Is there radar picking up the vessel, is it visual, or is it somebody saying, ``We see a vessel at three o'clock and it looks like this''? Could we have more clarity on how intelligence adds to the picture?

Mr. Souccar: Will do.

Senator Moore: We talked about the Marine Security Enforcement Teams. What about the Marine Security Emergency Response Teams, that one plus the fifth one? Would you please run through the staffing of those two initiatives.

Mr. Souccar: For the Marine Security Emergency Response Teams, we are looking at two teams, one in Montreal and one in Toronto. The staffing of these teams is ongoing.

Senator Moore: Do we have numbers or has it not been formulated yet? What do you mean by ``ongoing''?

Mr. Souccar: In terms of the numbers, I ask that you not ask me to reveal the numbers of personnel on an emergency response team in public. It can be done in camera. However, as I said, there are two teams, situated in Toronto and Montreal, with a capacity to respond quickly and efficiently.

The Chairman: Are these teams dedicated? Is the staff full-time?

Mr. Souccar: Yes, those would be dedicated Marine Security Emergency Response Teams.

The Chairman: When they are not responding, they are training and drilling and so on? They do not have another job; they do not wear two hats?

Mr. Souccar: No. They are dedicated Marine Security Emergency Response Teams.

Mr. Cabana: They are integrated teams with some of the police of jurisdiction.

The Chairman: The police of jurisdiction are dedicated and they are full-time as well?

Mr. Cabana: If I may, Mr. Chairman? You will see some cross-training occurring with the teams already in place that are responsible for some of the responses to incidents inland within some of these jurisdictions, as well as in concert with the resources that we will be dedicating to the maritime teams.

The Chairman: When you talk about the two teams, one in Ontario and one in Quebec, you moved your hands as though they were coming together. Are there jurisdictional problems with the Quebec police coming into Ontario and vice versa?

Mr. Souccar: The only jurisdictional issues would be for provincial municipal police officers who are police officers in and for the province in which they were sworn. This can be remedied through supernumerary special constable designations under the RCMP Act. There are solutions to that and they are not difficult to achieve.

The Chairman: These are double-badged as opposed to double-headed?

Mr. Souccar: Yes. The integration as well is important to the extent that we can leverage on expertise that already exists with various emergency response teams from municipal and provincial police departments in terms of underwater capacity, and so on.

Senator Moore: I am not clear. Are these land-based personnel or will these personnel be operating on water?

Mr. Souccar: They will be land based, prepared to respond to any on-water emergency.

Senator Moore: Is it being established, this year, next year? What is the time frame?

Mr. Cabana: The teams are practically fully staffed as we speak. There have been delays with procuring and establishing standards with some of the equipment that these teams will be using simply because these standards did not exist prior to this initiative coming on line.

The Chairman: They would supplement ERT teams that exist in these areas as well if there were a land-based problem?

Mr. Souccar: For the dedicated Marine Security Emergency Response Team, should a catastrophe occur where they are absolutely required on land, decisions are made to deploy them where the need is. However, they are dedicated and their responsibility and number one priority is for marine.

The Chairman: However, their capacity is to operate on the water. If you have the skills to operate on the water you also have the skills to operate on land.

Mr. Souccar: Yes.

The Chairman: Whereas if you have the skills to operate on land, you may not have the skills to operate on water.

Mr. Souccar: That is correct.

Senator Moore: I do not think you indicated where the National Waterside Security Coordination Team is located and the personnel. Is that another security matter, where you do not want to talk about it except in camera, or can you speak about that?

Mr. Souccar: We can speak about that, senator. The National Waterside Security Coordination Teams are located across Canada in various locations, for example, Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Halifax, and Niagara.

Senator Moore: How many are there?

Mr. Souccar: We have six full-time employees in all.

Senator Moore: Six teams?

Mr. Souccar: No, six police officers. They are located in different areas in order to be able to identify not the threats but the vulnerabilities that exist and to seize on opportunities to leverage resources to determine what assets are missing or what assets are available to be used by other teams — that is, to give you a good picture of what we have out there, what the gaps are, in order to be able to improve on them. They are not there to do a threat-risk assessment but more a vulnerability assessment.

The Chairman: There are a total of 55 that you have told us about. Leaving aside the Marine Security Emergency Response Team, is it correct that you have a total of 55 personnel that are dealing with security as it relates to the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway and both coasts?

Mr. Souccar: There will be more than that. We have the National Port Enforcement Teams.

The Chairman: We started out with the National Port Enforcement Teams at 25.

Mr. Souccar: No, 24.

The Chairman: As of now, what is the figure?

Mr. Souccar: Right, now it is 24, yes.

The Chairman: For the Marine Security Operation Centres, we had eight; we had 16 for Marine Security Enforcement Teams; and we had six for the National Waterside Security Coordination Team. We are not counting the Marine Security Emergency Response Teams because you do not want to count them today, but we know it is there. If my math is right, the figure is —

Mr. Souccar: Fifty-four, plus.

The Chairman: Okay.

Senator Moore: Following along the reports with regard to Canada's status, we are twenty-eighth of the 30 OECD countries with police per capita. We have this long, undefended border historically. Post-9/11, our American friends are there doing live ammunition drills, plus their Coast Guard vessels are armed. Where should we be in a perfect world? Looking at the marine part of the border and your responsibility there, is this enough in terms of personnel and equipment and vessels? I know there is never enough, but practically speaking I am sure you have looked at this in terms of your long-range planning. Where should we be? What should you have and when?

The Chairman: Think about it 24/7, because everything you have so far sounds as though you have got folks working nine to five, and we know the bad guys do not work the same hours.

Mr. Souccar: First, we cannot look at marine security in isolation; we have to look at border security.

If you recall, in my last appearance before you, I talked about the balloon effect. If you tighten up in one area, they go elsewhere. They know where our weaknesses are. They find our weakness, and that is where they go. We must ensure that air, land, marine and ports are tight so that we can then strategically squeeze them where we want them to go in order to be able to be there waiting for them. If we are not everywhere and we tighten up in only one area, they will go elsewhere and we will have to redeploy people in the area after the fact when we determine they have gone elsewhere or we will end up suffering the consequences.

The Chairman: Before you go on with this one, we do not think you have enough police anywhere — it does not matter whether it is airports or any ports — in any part of the system. The committee's estimate is that you are low by somewhere between 5,000 and 7,000 personnel. We accept the fact that if you harden one part of the component, they will go elsewhere.

Tell us what it takes to harden this part of it. We will get on to the other parts in due course. We will ask the same questions about airports and the different parts of the force later on. What we want to know is this: Given the vastness of the Great Lakes, and given the length of the St. Lawrence Seaway, given how important it is to the safety of Canada and how many Canadians live in that area, what does it really take for you to sleep well at night, knowing that you have enough people 24/7 out there and able to respond? What sort of equipment does it take, aside from talking about the four new vessels that sound to us like, in the normal rotation, one is getting repaired, one is working up, and two are out functioning? I have not heard you mention aircraft or helicopters yet, or any of the other devices that people would use to keep track of an area this size.

Tell us about the perfect world that Senator Moore is asking about. We have a blank cheque here; we are ready to fill in the amount if you tell us what it really takes.

Mr. Souccar: The marine picture would include the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway and the 19 ports that you identified earlier. Although organized crime does not control the ports, they certainly have access to control certain areas of operations within the ports, which would facilitate the movement of contraband, people, whatever it may be, involving national security issues or organized crime issues. We would identify those 19 ports and bolster them with National Port Enforcement Teams, with what we call Special I technology — sensors, cameras, bomb disposal units, and intelligence teams, which are key to identifying the problem. It is nice to target something at a location, but unless you are working smarter instead of harder, you may be spinning your wheels. Having the intelligence teams to direct us so that we use the resources effectively and efficiently is key to getting the work done well.

Surveillance teams would be extremely important. Air assets would be extremely important.

There are many components to making this right. I would estimate it would take, in terms of people, approximately 900 resources that would be required in order to look after the marine port component alone.

Senator Moore: Does that include the coasts as well as the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway system?

Mr. Souccar: Yes, we are talking about the 19 ports on both coasts.

The Chairman: Given that the coastline of Nova Scotia is 20,000 kilometres around, when you take note of all the coves and inlets, are you being modest or conservative here? If you sat down and calculated the miles of coastline that you are covering, that is an incredible number.

Mr. Souccar: It is no different from the land border, where you can stand shoulder to shoulder and ensure that nothing gets through, or work based on the intelligence that you have so that people can be located in areas where the threat exists, with the ability to redeploy these people as the threat and intelligence changes.

The Chairman: In a perfect world, we would like to do that. If you are in Saskatchewan, you can look down a fairly straight line for a long way. If you stand in Cape Breton, you can look 100 yards and that is the end of the view.

Mr. Souccar: I agree, Mr. Chairman. Again, I do not think it is a conservative figure. It is a realistic one in terms of being able to operate based on robust intelligence that we can gather as opposed to sealing every nook that we can around the marine border.

The Chairman: Senator Moore asks about the assets. What do you need in terms of aircraft, vessels and helicopters? What are the sorts of assets you need and how many? Give us some sense of what it takes to get your Marine Security Emergency Response Teams to the Lakehead in a hurry. How do you get them to Buffalo if they are in Montreal? How do you move around and check out a specific vessel that appears to be an anomaly when you do have a real-time picture? What does it take?

Mr. Cabana: This is probably something where we would need to return to you with more specifics. It is a complicated issue to determine exactly the type of assets required to effectively provide the support to the different teams that are in place, because we also have to take into consideration the existence of present assets.

At the present time, there is limited air capacity from some of the aircraft that the RCMP has, as well as some partners that participate in our initiatives. This is something that would have to be taken into consideration in establishing exactly what would be required.

The Chairman: Chief Superintendent, we understand this. We also understand that you would leverage this with provincial and local police. Having said that, some of us spent time at the convention in Toronto two weeks ago, and they were a sorry lot. They felt they were ignored, under-resourced, under-supported, and were carrying much of the burden with few people. With regard to your comment to us that this is something you have to study, it may come as a surprise to you that we put the question to the commissioner a good 18 months ago and we were promised an answer back a year ago last spring. I am sure there are people beavering away at this somewhere in the system, but they have not shared it, evidently, with you, or with us.

Mr. Cabana: I have seen some of the information that these individuals have worked on. I will be honest with you. Some of the technology and the specifications surrounding the technology are beyond me. For example, for air support on the coast, a special type of plane with a long-reach capacity is needed. These types of studies and this type of examination have occurred and continue to occur to identify the type of assets.

Unfortunately, today, here, I do not have that information.

The Chairman: Have you gone so far as to describe the problem and put the issue out to the private sector and said, ``Look, what sort of equipment can you provide us with that will meet these missions?''

Mr. Souccar: Mr. Chairman, I have also seen some of the technology that would be required. It is not fresh in my mind at this point. We have talked about unmanned aerial vehicles. We have talked about helicopter, fixed-wing, long- range, short-range, helicopters that can carry emergency response teams that are large enough and configured to carry them along with the equipment required. As you know, the number exceeds the capacity of a typical helicopter; thus, you would require the right size of helicopter with the right range and capacity to lift the weight of the equipment required.

We talked about sensors that would be required — cameras, radar. Our technical operations section, which does not fall under my area of responsibility — there is one that does not — was consulted and came up with a list of equipment that would be required now. The list may not have been written in the perfect world. It was written in a realistic way to see what would be available for resources to secure the border.

The Chairman: If we translate ``realistically available,'' it means, ``What do we think we can get through the next set of estimates the department would sign off on?'' That is the challenge with which you are faced. The question we are putting to you is this: Yes, the government will approve whatever it will approve. Yes, you have to live within the constraints of the budget that you are given. We are asking you a broad generic question based on your professional judgment. We would like to have back — and if you do not have it available now, you can provide it to the committee — what you would need to be able to do this. You have come up with the number of 900 personnel; yet we know there are ways of leveraging the 900 to provide for far greater security than the proverbial 900 that are standing shoulder to shoulder forming a physical barrier.

You have told us that intelligence and mobility is important, but what do you need to enhance that and what will you do to leverage that? To the committee, the number 900 seems extraordinarily small, given the length of our coastlines, the length of the St. Lawrence Seaway and the size of the Great Lakes. If we were guessing, 900 people on a 24/7 basis means 200 people are available on any given shift. Two hundred people for both coasts, 19 designated ports, four of the five Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway does not give me a warm feeling going to sleep at night that we have a lot of capability making sure that our borders are secure. You are what stands between Canada and the rest of the world along the borders, with the exception of the border posts where we have the CBSA.

That is why we feel the 900 is a modest number, but perhaps if you described it in the context of how you can leverage that with the equipment and other assets, we might start to understand how 200 people could actually cover the coastline with all of the bays, coves and ports that we have to deal with, not just drugs and smuggling people but also with national security and terrorist problems that may come up.

The 900 does not sound like it is very many people. Having said that, we know it is a lot of money.

Mr. Souccar: Again, the key is targeting those 900 to the threat area as opposed to simply patrolling. It is in response to particular threats, and, of course, within those 900 would be the intelligence component that would direct the 900 to where they need to be. That is where I am coming from. I understand your point, but we will undertake to get back to you in terms of the technology.

The Chairman: Are they dedicated to a marine environment? When you talk about having it intelligence-led, that is usually a code for this committee that says, ``We do not have enough money, so we have to prioritize our objectives.'' We have had the commissioner sitting where you are, and he has told us that he has sufficient funds to deal with only one third of the organized crime groups he knows exist in the country, so he got an intelligence-led organization that is going after the worst ones, but that still tells us the other two thirds are not getting the attention they might deserve.

We would like to know whether these people will be marine-dedicated, marine-trained and marine-focused and will understand the language and the culture, namely, what is different about marine policing from policing in downtown Surrey or places where someone is doing contract work in a patrol car and dealing with the community. It is a different sort of community. When you provide us with this information, can you give us some indication of the type of training these people would have? Would their work be focused entirely on the marine side, or would they be people who are moving back and forth and do not spend most of their career on the water or related to the water?

Mr. Souccar: These resources would be totally dedicated to the marine and port environment. As you know, in the last government announcement, we received 1,000 resources, which were intended to bring us back to where we should be, namely, inland, so those were resources for the drug teams, customs, immigration and commercial crime. There is no doubt that strong inland teams make more secure borders.

The Chairman: I am with you there, but the 1,000 people that were announced turned out to be 600 police and 400 civilians, and they were filling in positions that had become vacant. They were not new. We were not seeing any growth in the RCMP. We were seeing the filling up of the existing establishment of the RCMP, which is quite a different picture.

We are presuming that the 900 you are talking about here would be above what you currently have and not taken away from airports, if you will, which we think we are also badly understaffed.

Mr. Souccar: Those would be the perfect-world scenario resources dedicated fully to marine and port and working hand-in-glove with the inland teams that would be investigating the criminal mind's organization, the criminal organizations that are running the ventures through the ports and using the facilitators that exist at the marine ports and so on.

The Chairman: I can assure you the committee understands the logic that, if someone is running drugs into the country, it is not with the purpose of setting up a store on the beach. They intend to move the drugs into the country and spread them out throughout. We understand that concept, but we also think there have to be people on the beach, as it were, or just a few yards off the beach, keeping track of it.

Mr. Souccar: That is correct, and, to that extent, the 900 would be on the beach.

Senator Atkins: If you are looking ahead, is there incremental planning that you could apply that would make any sense? It seems to me that the technology in some cases would replace a number of personnel that you might require, for instance, helicopters.

When I think about border security, helicopters would be one of the key resources that you could have. Yet, as I understand it, in Atlantic Canada, the RCMP has one helicopter available. Do you have access to that?

Mr. Souccar: First, you are absolutely correct that technology can, in certain instances, reduce the number of personnel that are required. To the extent you have a helicopter available to an emergency response team, you may have one team that could do the job of two teams because that team can be transported from point A to point B, not needing to have a team at point A and a team at point B that can respond relatively quickly. To some extent, you are correct.

Sensors, radar and so forth can also replace having a person present. With respect to intelligence, as opposed to shooting in the dark, you can target your resources to where they need to be. I agree with you that technology can go a long way to reducing the number of people that are required.

Senator Atkins: You did not say whether there is one helicopter in Atlantic Canada.

Mr. Cabana: Yes, there is a helicopter based out of Fredericton, and the Integrated Border Enforcement Teams have access to that asset.

Senator Atkins: That is surely not enough.

Mr. Souccar: That is not the perfect world, no.

Senator Atkins: Why do you pick Hamilton rather than Toronto?

Mr. Souccar: The threat assessment that was conducted led us to Hamilton as being the location that was in need of that team first. As we progress and as teams can expand, Toronto would certainly be in the picture. Hamilton was chosen as a result of a threat assessment conducted.

Senator Atkins: We hear that the criminal element is significant at the ports in Montreal. You say you have 16 personnel in the Montreal area?

Mr. Souccar: We have six National Port Enforcement Teams in Montreal, six in Vancouver and nine in Halifax.

Senator Atkins: How can you manage with six in Montreal? Are you not significantly shorthanded in terms of dealing with what is going to there?

Mr. Cabana: If your question is whether six is sufficient, clearly it is not. We need to understand that these six resources are being supplemented by resources from other RCMP programs at this point in time. There are ongoing discussions with the City of Montreal for their integration within the team in the port, and this team is working hand in glove with other units of the RCMP as well as the Sûreté du Québec and the MUC.

The Chairman: When the committee last met with the Montreal municipal police, they had no dedicated resources for the port, aside from a small group on the team. The City of Montreal was policing the port, which runs 20 kilometres along the waterfront, from 12 different police posts, and the police responsible might be dealing with a family dispute in the morning, a car accident at noon and responding to a call at the port in the evening.

Are you telling us there has been a change in attitude and Montreal will be developing police with a specific expertise in working in ports?

Mr. Cabana: No. I am referring to discussions that have been ongoing with the City of Montreal for the integration of some of their police officers within the National Port Enforcement Team in the port of Montreal.

The Chairman: Are you talking about another six?

Mr. Cabana: Whatever the number will be.

The Chairman: It will not be double digit.

Mr. Cabana: I have no idea.

Mr. Souccar: At this point, you were talking about the uniform personnel from Montreal police and Mr. Cabana was referring to the National Port Enforcement Team that worked investigations.

The Chairman: No, I was referring to the group that did the investigations. When the chief superintendent said that Montreal is rethinking the issue, I described how Montreal polices the port in a general sense. My question was this: Are they considering a focused group that concentrates on the port itself? The answer I got back was ``no.'' I am assuming that the port team will be enhanced. Is that right?

Mr. Souccar: Yes, to the extent that it will be enhanced. It will not be enhanced by large numbers. In a perfect world, it would be great to have a well-staffed, robust investigative team dedicated to the port. At this point, the team that we have is able to carry out certain investigations, but not too many. When investigations or criminal acts or issues of national security occur, we have our inland teams that we redeploy to help out with the National Port Enforcement Team investigation, which then leaves an opening inland because they are redeployed. As you mentioned earlier, they are intelligence-led. We clearly do not have enough resources at the ports, so we pick and choose which investigations we do and redeploy resources based on the hot issues.

Senator Atkins: The ports like Halifax were taken out of your port security and handed over to the municipalities. In a general sense, would you recommend that all ports be under RCMP authority?

Mr. Souccar: Yes, I would support that very much.

Senator Atkins: Would it serve the public interest better?

Mr. Souccar: I think it would, to the extent that it would not be fragmented across the country by having different organizations perhaps running it differently. It would help by having the inland and ports working together. As I said earlier, having strong inland teams creates secure borders. They work together and they work off each other, so to that extent it would be a positive thing.

Senator Atkins: The problem would be the number of personnel required?

Mr. Souccar: Clearly.

Senator Atkins: Do you have any thoughts about what it would take in terms of human resources?

Mr. Souccar: In terms of human resources just for the ports alone, or the marine environment?

Senator Atkins: Marine.

Mr. Souccar: That would be the numbers I mentioned earlier, and it would be about 900.

Senator Atkins: What about ports?

Mr. Souccar: Ports alone, I know we have that number because we have looked at marine globally; we have it broken down. I cannot think of it.

Mr. Cabana: I believe I have it. We are referring here to a perfect world, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman: The 19 designated ports, perfect world.

Mr. Cabana: Perfect world, 19 designated ports including both components, looking at a uniformed presence, which is also a significant gap and an important one as well, including the support. Here we are talking about the technology to support these teams, including underwater and bomb disposal, et cetera. Again, it depends on the number of locations we are looking at within the ports. If we are looking at 19, we are speaking probably in the vicinity of 550.

The Chairman: That is uniformed, and how many non-uniformed?

Mr. Cabana: This is both.

The Chairman: Five hundred and fifty, you said.

Mr. Cabana: Approximately 550.

The Chairman: You would add that to the 900 you mentioned earlier?

Mr. Souccar: No, this would be part of the 900. This would include the investigative teams, uniformed personnel, intelligence component and bomb-disposal units.

Senator Atkins: Which is all very important, is it not?

Mr. Souccar: Absolutely.

Senator Atkins: And not being done now?

Mr. Souccar: At this point, the policing of the ports is not under RCMP jurisdiction.

Senator Atkins: You do not know whether it is or is not?

The Chairman: We know you have 27 personnel for the 19 ports?

Mr. Souccar: Port enforcement teams. Not for the 19, no. Just for Montreal, Halifax and Vancouver.

The Chairman: We know in Halifax they only have 10 constables for 24/7 security.

Mr. Souccar: You are talking about uniformed personnel?

The Chairman: Total, period. We know in St. John's they have zero.

Senator Atkins: In terms of the personnel under your authority, what kind of special training do they acquire?

Mr. Souccar: They acquire everything from major case management courses to drug investigational techniques, which are provided within national security investigative courses, so they can work together with the Integrated National Security Enforcement Team and national security investigative sections. There are general investigative courses for plainclothes-type of investigation, organized crime or national security.

Mr. Cabana: For personnel on water, we are not necessarily making reference to people working in port, but the personnel on water receive additional training from, for example, the Canadian Coast Guard on the handling of marine vessels and the marine environment in general.

Mr. Souccar: Surviving in cold water is another skill they learn.

Senator Banks: I will continue along that same line of questioning.

You talked always about the importance of integrating your resources with other available resources from other orders of government. When you answered Senator Atkins' question about the number of people that you would need if the RCMP took over the full responsibility for maritime security — ports and the St. Lawrence Seaway — would the answer still be 900, or was the 900 including the 550 for ports contemplating a continued involvement of other forces?

In other words, if the RCMP were given the sole responsibility for marine security in Canada, ports and the St. Lawrence Seaway, am I right that the number would not be 900 but more?

Mr. Souccar: The 900, to my understanding, included Royal Canadian Mounted Police personnel.

Senator Banks: Does that contemplate continued contributions to uniformed security operations by municipal police and provincial police?

Mr. Cabana: I apologize, but I will correct that. The 900 did foresee the continued integration and the contribution of municipal and provincial agencies.

Senator Banks: Therefore, if a government were to determine for reasons of efficiency that you talked about the fact that you would not have to bother sharing information because the information would already be in one place and the people in Halifax could talk to people in Victoria without the slightest impediment or asking anyone's permission and the like, if the RCMP took over the full responsibility for maritime security and putting ports, would the number be somewhat more than 900?

Mr. Souccar: That is where we will have to —

Senator Banks: Bear in mind when I am asking these questions that I am operating under that assumption.

Mr. Souccar: My understanding is that it would take 900 resources to police the ports and the marine environment. These 900 resources would include RCMP, municipal and provincial aspects. Therefore, the total number would be 900. That is what I intended to say at first, but I was not clear.

Senator Banks: Let us talk about the specific numbers. The number I come to when I add up the number of people there today is somewhat fewer than 50. In the Marine Security Operation Centre, there are three RCMP, one civilian, four DND and two others at headquarters.

Mr. Cabana: We are referring to the Great Lakes MSOC here. We have RCMP representation at the other MSOCs on the coast as well. At the Great Lakes, in fact, we have three RCMP regular members plus one civilian.

Senator Banks: You stated that with respect to the National Waterside Security Coordination Program, there are six such teams: Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Halifax, Niagara and —

Mr. Cabana: If I can provide clarification, there is only one team in the National Waterside Security Coordination Program, with six police officers attached to that team. They are located in different parts of the country, presently in Vancouver, Niagara, Toronto and here in Ottawa. The team is being coordinated and tasked centrally out of Ottawa.

Senator Banks: There is one such team. The numbers I took from what you stated earlier as well as the questions asked came to 49 or 50 RCMP officers presently involved. Even using the figure of 900, it means we would need about 18 times as many people as you have now to do the job, from whatever source you get them from.

Is there a prospect in the foreseeable term that the figure of 900 will materialize from someplace? Is there some plan in place for that? Is there a budget available for it that we have not heard about yet, or are we just talking blue sky?

Mr. Souccar: A bit of both, blue sky to the extent that we were asked what we would need in a perfect world. Realistically, there are discussions going on at present as to what would be required to improve our capacity on water and at the ports.

Senator Banks: I must say that the phrase ``there are ongoing discussions'' strikes terror into our hearts. So far, if you had to add up all of the things that we have asked to which the answer has been ``there are ongoing discussions'' — and that is in every area of national security and national defence, which is a very broad subject — I would tell you that if you looked for a definition in our book of that, it would mean there is nothing happening and nothing will happen for a very long time, if ever.

For example, how long have there been ongoing discussions with the Port of Montreal and the Montreal municipal police force in terms of their integration into a port enforcement team? How long have those discussions been ongoing?

Mr. Souccar: With all due respect, and this is based on a conversation I think we had previously, I hope you can appreciate there are certain commitments and discussions that take place that I am not at liberty to speak about, cabinet confidence-type documents.

Senator Banks: Nor would we want you to speak about those.

Mr. Souccar: That is the reason I sometimes use phrases that strike terror in your hearts. I think there is a will to make things happen.

Senator Banks: Is there a real prospect of those 900 people materializing? That is 18 times more than there are people there presently.

Mr. Souccar: I do not know to what extent the perfect world scenario would materialize, but I am optimistic that something will happen to greatly improve the situation we are in now.

Senator Banks: One reason we are asking this question with such ardour is that this committee has just returned from examining the Port of Rotterdam, its security and police capacity, as well as the Port of Dubai and the nature of its police involvement. We are looking at things going on at other ports as well.

In Rotterdam, for example — which may be the perfect world — there are, I think the number is 370 or 380 police officers in the ports division who spend their careers in the Rotterdam port police. That means, using our approximate numbers, there could theoretically be 100 policemen around that port at any given time. I know it does not work that way, but those resources are substantial.

The Chairman: They also stressed the fact that they used the same principle that while those are the police they have in the ports, they feed back into an organization that functions throughout the Netherlands. Without that coordination, they could not function. Rotterdam is much bigger than any port in Canada. We concede that. We are trying to compare oranges with oranges here.

Senator Banks: One of the points made by one of the operators of that port is that that level of security is necessary for good business. It gives shippers and receivers and importers and exporters confidence in the matter of dealing with their goods.

Senator Moore referred to this earlier. We are so far below — 28 out of 30 on the OECD — in terms of police personnel in general but in maritime security in particular, that that causes what I think is not unfair to describe as alarm in our committee. We know of an instance in which a container simply disappeared and nobody knows how or why. That does not cause great confidence in the people who use ports. We know the operators are not directly concerned with security of the port.

I will ask one perfect-world question. It is the one that Senator Atkins asked. There has been talk about a reinstatement of ports police as a separate entity. Are we correct in our position, and I think the position of the committee, that that would be very inefficient and expensive by comparison with assigning port security to the RCMP? Are we right when we say that?

Mr. Souccar: In terms of the numbers and costs, I do not have the numbers as to what it will cost to reinstate the port police. I know, however, that increasing numbers alone does not get the job done. Increasing numbers in an intelligent way can get the job done. Depending on the task at hand, 50 may do the job better than 100, based on how they are doing it. It is back to intelligence-led.

Again, do we need a fence between Canada and the United States or do we need stronger intelligence-led border enforcement teams. When contraband comes across the points of entry, it is smuggled between them. Those are the issues that I think about when we talk about increasing numbers. We can increase numbers, but we have to do it in a way that is integrated, in a way that is intelligence-led.

You ask if it is it better to reinstate the port police or give the responsibility to the RCMP. When there is one agency that is prioritizing what it has, they start with the highest risk and work their way down. If there are two or three or four different agencies, they all have a number-one risk associated with what they do. That one risk, overall in the big scheme of things, may be number 60 or 70, but it is number one for them. They want to address it so they focus their efforts on the number-one risk. If there is one organization and it prioritizes everything, then the highest risk gets addressed rather than the number-one risk of that fragmented system.

Senator Banks: I want to assure you that nobody on this committee would ever suggest that we have the slightest expertise into how to do your job or what the priorities ought to be or how those people ought to be assigned. We are simply concerned with ensuring ourselves that you have sufficient resources to do the task at hand, and we believe that you do not.

The Chairman: If it gives you any comfort, Assistant Commissioner Souccar, Julian Fantino, when he was chief of the Metro Toronto Police, testified that he felt Canada would be better served with one police force. We will have to see, when we invite him back as head of the OPP, whether he has the same view. We had the impression that, perhaps, he thought he would be the right candidate for that job, but there is a consensus that while there is a significant amount of coordination there is also a significant amount of duplication. We do not have the resources to allow for that sort of duplication.

You are developing a bit of a deficit with us, Assistant Commissioner. There is some information that we are waiting for from your last appearance before us. At this meeting, you have added to that deficit somewhat significantly. We would be grateful to receive that information. It does not need to come in a big chunk. If you want to send it along, one part at a time, that would be satisfactory, and we would be happy to address it that way. If it comes in a way that is not structured that we can use, we can get back to you and ask that you restructure it in order for us to better understand it or to have some sort of dialogue about it.

I worry about you devoting some of your resources to preparing a total package that, when it arrives, we do not understand the way it is laid out. It would be helpful if we could get a bit of an interim process with the committee. The point of contact is the clerk, but our researchers could be in contact with the people preparing this sort of information so that there can be some form of dialogue. If it came a bit at a time, that would be helpful. You would get a better sense of what we are looking for and we could start working on the information as you have it available. We would be very grateful for that.

Mr. Souccar: Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I wish my testimony were a week or two later than today, because I told you the last time that you would not have to ask me twice. You have now asked me twice.

The Chairman: I just mentioned deficits.

Mr. Souccar: The material is almost complete. We are just putting the final polishing touches on it. Perhaps, as you indicated, we should have had it sent sooner for you to let us know whether it is what you are looking for. Rest assured that if it is not, then what you require will be resubmitted to you in the format for which you have asked.

It has not slipped through the cracks. It is being prepared and it is almost complete. I am personally overseeing it, to ensure that it gets done.

The Chairman: We are grateful for that. Again, we have a new list that we will be adding to it. We are eager to get as complete a picture as we can of the existing information and compare that to the perfect world and then start talking about how we close the gap between one and the other. I am sure you have the same concerns. We hope this is a vehicle where we can get a better understanding of where our strengths and opportunities are for providing better security for Canadians.

On behalf of the committee, I wish to thank you very much, Assistant Commissioner Souccar and Chief Superintendent Cabana, for taking the time to come to testify before us.

For members of the public, please visit our website by going to www.sen-sec.ca. We post witness testimony as well as confirmed hearing schedules.

You can contact the clerk of the committee by calling 1-800-267-7362 for further information or assistance in contacting members of the committee.

The committee continued in camera.