B.C. Conservatives say if their party forms another federal government, it will create a formal list of criminal gangs, similar to the way it did for designated terrorist groups.
The party is also promising $2.5-million more per year on efforts to steer teens away from gang activity.
Former MP Stockwell Day unveiled the plan with candidate Dianne Watts, the former mayor of Surrey, B.C. – a city recently racked by a spasm of gun violence.
They say the gang list would ease the requirement for Crown prosecutors to prove repeatedly in individual cases that a specific gang is a criminal organization.
Day and Watts also pledged to increase spending by $2.5-million a year on a fund aimed at preventing youth from joining gangs.
The gang announcement in Surrey drew scornful comment from Garry Begg, a former Mountie and now NDP candidate in the neighbouring riding of Fleetwood-Port Kells.
He said the announcement comes after years of Conservative foot-dragging on crime and a series of clawbacks from the RCMP budget.
Last May, the federal government promised to hire 100 additional Mounties for Surrey and spend millions more to fight a low-level, drug-fuelled turf war that has set off scores of shootings and killed one man.