ontario news watch

Pandemics, climate change among new threats that demand security rethink: adviser

OTTAWA — The prime minister’s intelligence adviser is calling for a expanded definition of national security in an era of global pandemics, climate change and cyberthreats.

In a speech sponsored by the Centre for International Governance Innovation, Vincent Rigby says the world is experiencing seismic political and economic shifts and facing a complex combination of new security challenges. 

Rigby, who became security and intelligence adviser in January 2020, says these challenges are relevant to all Canadians in their daily lives, as the COVID-19 pandemic has made clear.

He says in the face of such massive change, Canada’s national security community needs to evolve and adapt. 

That means ensuring officials have the needed tools and authorities, increasing transparency with Canadians, advancing diversity and inclusion initiatives, and working across and beyond government.

Rigby says security officials must start by engaging Canadians in an open and continuous dialogue.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 8, 2021.

The Canadian Press