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Strengthening security for at-risk schools

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Alberta’s government is increasing funding for security infrastructure and officer presence at Islamic and Jewish faith-based schools to improve safety.

Albertans have the right to feel safe regardless of where they gather to learn, worship, or socialize. Due to rising antisemitism and Islamophobia. The government is taking direct action to ensure the safety of Jewish and Muslim students in Alberta. The Alberta Security Infrastructure Program (ASIP) grant is being expanded to include Jewish and Islamic faith-based schools for up to 12 months.

Eligible faith-based schools that have identified the need for short-term physical security on campus will be able to apply for up to $20,000 in funding. The Alberta Sheriffs will also be made available upon request when asked by local police to support law enforcement in monitoring sensitive religious and cultural infrastructure such as synagogues, mosques, eligible schools, and community centres to deter hate-motivated vandalism and harassment.

"It has become clear that demand exists. In recent months, schools and parents have approached the government, expressing concerns about school security and options for responding to the needs. We’re taking proactive steps that will help keep students and worshippers safe.”

Mike Ellis, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services

“The rise in hate-motivated violence has no place in Alberta. We are taking action to protect Albertans from this violence, with a particular emphasis on protecting our children in faith-based schools. Let me be perfectly clear – people from all faiths are welcome in Alberta and the fundamental right to peaceful protest belongs to all Canadians. As minister of justice and attorney general for the Province of Alberta, I will do everything necessary to protect those rights.”

Mickey Amery, Minister of Justice

“The safety, security and well-being of students is the Alberta government’s highest priority. Every student in Alberta should feel safe and secure when they walk through the front door of their school. This additional funding will allow schools to enhance security for students.”

Demetrios Nicolaides, Minister of Education

ASIP funding currently supports non-profit organizations, eligible charities, and places of worship. This new temporary funding for Islamic and Jewish faith-based schools will help cover the costs of security assessments and enhancements.

Since its introduction in 2021, the ASIP grant has supported diverse communities and groups at risk of hate-motivated violence with financial help to address security needs. In 2022-23, Alberta’s government increased funding for ASIP to a total of $5 million annually. To date, ASIP has distributed 231 individual grants totalling more than $2.4 million.

“On behalf of Alberta’s Jewish community, I want to express our sincere appreciation to the Government of Alberta for the expansion of the ASIP grant and for the provision of Alberta Sheriffs to protect our community as required. With a rise in antisemitism and incidents of hate targeted towards Alberta’s Jewish community, we have required additional security measures so our children can attend school without fear of attack, so we can worship in our synagogues and so we can attend cultural community events.  With this added layer of protection, our community obtains the security it needs to function.”

Stacey Leavitt-Wright, CEO, Jewish Federation of Edmonton

"Edmonton Islamic Academy is grateful for the provincial government’s commitment to include faith-based independent schools within the Alberta Security Infrastructure Program. This grant helps independent schools such as Edmonton Islamic Academy provide students and staff with appropriate supports and security measures and, ultimately, allows students to access their education in a safe and secure environment.”

Abraham Abougouche, principal, Edmonton Islamic Academy

AISCA appreciates the Alberta government's commitment to enhancing security for vulnerable schools in our province. Such a proactive stance will create safer spaces for students, and is a prudent and necessary measure.”

John Jagersma, executive director, Association of Independent Schools and Colleges of Alberta (AISCA)

“The Alberta Sheriffs are an integral part of our province’s law enforcement continuum and look forward to working with local police to ensure the safety of all Albertans at our educational institutions and places of worship.”

Bob Andrews, acting chief, Alberta Sheriffs

Quick facts

  • The temporary expansion of the ASIP has two types of grant application:
    • the cost recovery grant (a reimbursement of expenses incurred after Oct. 7, 2023)
    • the regular grant for security assessment, infrastructure and equipment purchases, and related training
  • There are three categories for funding. Eligible applicants can apply online for funding or cost reimbursement under one or more of these categories, depending on the security needs they identify.

Related information

Online News Release