Quebec invests extra $19M to combat sexual exploitation of minors

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Public Security Minister Geneviève Guilbault announced the majority of the funding will be used to create a new program that aims to fight more effectively and sustainably against the sexual exploitation of minors.  (Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Public Security Minister Geneviève Guilbault announced the majority of the funding will be used to create a new program that aims to fight more effectively and sustainably against the sexual exploitation of minors. (Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press - image credit)

Quebec is continuing its fight against the sexual exploitation of minors with an investment of $19.3 million over the next five years.

At a Tuesday press conference, Public Security Minister Geneviève Guilbault announced the majority of the funding will be used to create a new program that aims to fight more effectively and sustainably against it.

"Like in many security issues, when you get to the police, often it's because there are things that weren't done before. So we are here in the midst of prevention," Guilbault said.

In June, Guilbault announced an investment of nearly $100 million to finance an increase in police action. But recruiting police officers interested in this type of work, and able to do it, is hard, she said.

"Tracking pedophiles online from Monday to Friday, all day long — not everyone has the profile to do these jobs," she said.

As part of the new funding, organizations and projects that directly work with victims will receive $6 million over three years to help in prevention and intervention efforts.

Online prevention practices will also be accentuated, with social media now occupying an important place in the exploitation of minors.

The Quebec prostitution intervention project (PIPQ) will also receive more than half-a-million dollars for the development of its online interventions.

Another half-a-million dollars will be allocated to training different types of human resources and $200,000 has been set aside to renew and update the training of specialized workers. Over two years, $300,000 will be allocated to develop basic training for non-specialized workers.

The training will aim to make people aware of the importance of reporting situations of sexual exploitation to the appropriate authorities and of referring victims to assistance services.

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