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'It’s non-stop': Province putting up new money to help curb crime

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The province is putting up new money to help families and businesses curb crime.

But advocates and business owners are questioning if it’s enough to make a real difference.

“It’s non-stop,” said Ravi Ramberran, owner of Four Crowns Bar and Grill on McPhillips.

Just last week, Ramberran and his staff stopped two people trying to break in.

He said that’s a common occurrence.

“The truth is, it's the businesses that are getting attacked so much these days, where things are getting stolen, people are getting attacked, people are getting stabbed. People are getting pepper sprayed, robbed... So we want to protect these places as well," said Ramberran.

These concerns have reached the ears at the Manitoba Legislature.

Manitoba’s 2024 budget makes good on an NDP campaign promise to create a new $300 rebate for those purchasing, or upgrading their home or business security system.

“This $300 credit is, basically, you save the receipt for the home security device, you send it to us, we send you a $300 check,” said Manitoba Premier Wab Kinew.

“It's definitely not enough to cover all the costs that a lot of the Manitoba small businesses are seeing related to crime,” said Seorhin Yoo, a policy analyst at the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (CFIB).

The rebate is something the CFIB has been advocating for, but Yoo said $300 just doesn’t go far enough.

“B.C. has a similar program like this, it's a lot bigger. So they provide preventative and reparative rebates for small businesses up to $1,000 to $2,000. So this is something that we would like to see the Manitoba government replicate as well," said Yoo.

It’s a drop in the bucket for the security upgrades Ramberran has had to make.

“We just upgraded our camera system here and it was close to about $10,000 to $15,000. So for this as a business, it wouldn't go very far.”

Meantime, Kinew said, “A provincial government can't do everything. So we're making some important decisions, we're gonna give you $300 to help with the home security camera.”

While it may not offset the cost of security for his restaurant, Ramberran said at least it's something.

“I think now, the government's realizing what's happening, and they're trying to put something out there to help and I appreciate that.” 

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