WATCH ABOVE: Alan Carter reports on Kathleen Wynne’s response to the Ottawa shooting.
TORONTO – There are extra police at the Ontario legislature and officials will carry out a routine review of security measures at Queen’s Park in the wake of multiple shootings in Ottawa on Wednesday. However, there’s currently no intentions among Ontario’s leaders to arm security guards at Queen’s Park.
Dennis Clark, the Sergeant-at-Arms of the Ontario Legislature, said the province has a memorandum of understanding with the Toronto Police that allow for increased security whenever necessary.
“Anytime a similar situation happens like that, it goes immediately into effect, they add extra patrols and we work with them in concert with whatever the issue is,” Clark, a former RCMP officer said. “We have a fully seamless security service here that are well-trained and, like I said, we work in concert with Toronto Police.”
A member of the Canadian Forces who was guarding the War Memorial was shot and killed in Ottawa Wednesday morning.
There was an immediate and large security response around the memorial. At the same time, another shooting was reported inside the parliament buildings. Initially, police said an incident also occurred near the Rideau Centre, but they later said this wasn’t the case.
The security guards at the Ontario Legislature do not carry weapons and Clark told reporters at Queen’s Park there’s no reason to arm security.
The building was also not locked down in the wake of the shooting.
Wynne said at the start of Question Period Wednesday morning that she refused to let “democracy be silenced” by violence.
“Our belief, and I have spoken with the leaders of the Opposition Parties, our belief is that people who are using violence to undermine democracy want us to be silenced. And we refuse to be silenced,” Wynne said at the onset of meetings.
Lisa MacLeod, a conservative MPP from Ottawa, echoed Wynne’s comments and said she trusts the security measures that are currently in place.
“That really does shake a person but I’m confident in our police services in this nation, as well as our military that they will keep us safe as well as keeping themselves safe,” she said.
“I think we did the right thing today by saying we will stand up, we will continue with question period, we will continue to demonstrate democracy.”
NDP leader Andrea Horwath warned against “knee jerk” reactions to the incident.
“I don’t believe in the heightened emotions that people are feeling in the aftermath of what happened in Ottawa this morning that right now, is the immediate time to make decisions about whether changes are necessary.”
Dave Levac, the speaker of the house, said the government routinely reviews security measures and will continue with the routine checks.
“All of the security measures that we put in place are designed such that this is a free place, this is a place for democracy and it will continue in that matter.”
Ontario’s Minister of Community Safety said in a statement the Ontario Legislature’s Sergeant-at-Arms is monitoring the situation in Ottawa.
Naqvi went on to say the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) is part of a national counter terrorism security force that also includes local police services and is actively assessing any threats.