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Canada''s public safety minister wants more extensive background checks

Feb 22, 2011 Matt Roesly

The public safety minister in Canada is calling for a new method for background screenings, touting the use of fingerprint scanners. The Toronto Sun reports that Minister Vic Toews announced that switching to the technology would allow his agency to work more quickly when trying to determine who could get security clearance when seeking to do work with children, the disabled and senior citizens. Toews said the system would make sure that people who worked closely with vulnerable members of society did not have criminal backgrounds. "Some people have to wait several months before being able to take jobs as teachers or volunteers or as hockey coaches while their identity is being confirmed," Toews said. "This system allows police from anywhere in Canada to submit fingerprints electronically to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. If the individual's fingerprints do not match a criminal holding, police agencies will be able to receive the results electronically within minutes." Other places have called for stricter background screenings as well. After an airline attendant from Ontario was arrested inside a London airport with four kilograms of cocaine, many in the country have called for stricter checks for workers in the sector.