DETROIT – Canada’s public safety minister says an agreement with the U.S. that allows the two countries to help enforce each other’s laws isn’t an affront to Canadian sovereignty.
The pact, known as the Shiprider program, would allow officers from the RCMP and the U.S. Coast Guard to ride each other’s vessels for joint patrols and specific enforcement operations.
Vessels must currently stop at the border and call the other country’s agencies for help.
Public Safety Minister Peter Van Loan says because Shiprider uses its own equipment and will be jointly staffed, it shouldn’t be viewed as the Americans encroaching on Canadian jurisdiction.
Van Loan and U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano signed the agreement today in Detroit at a cargo facility at the Ambassador Bridge, which connects the city to Windsor, Ont.
Efforts similar to the Shiprider program have been tested at various times, such as during the 2006 Super Bowl in Detroit.