The Canadian government believes that better understanding of extremism is a key to preventing radicalization to violence before tragedies occur. To assist efforts on this behalf, the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, Karen McCrimmon, recently announced funding for an updated, comprehensive overview of the right-wing extremism movement in Canada.
The University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) will receive $366,985 over three years to examine the right-wing extremism movement through interviews with law enforcement, community anti-hate activists, and former and current extremists. The university will also partner with the Institute for Strategic Dialogue in London, U.K., to conduct innovative analysis of online content and media coverage, designed to inform local responses to hate speech and hate crime.
The result will be an up-to-date national survey on the beliefs, motivations, activities, and connections that characterize right-wing extremism in Canada, which will support law enforcement, the intelligence community, policy makers, and community organizations to tackle issues associated with this type of extremism. This includes hate crimes and the promotion of hatred and fear in communities and on the Internet.
“Since 2015 right-wing extremism groups seem to have grown in number, membership and visibility. This is a disturbing trend that creates a hostile, frightening environment for some communities. The project will help to identify vulnerabilities that can be exploited to weaken the movement.” said Dr. Barbara Perry, Professor, Faculty of Social Science and Humanities, UOIT.