Canada Is Spending $300K On Research Into Far-Right Extremism - 2019-03-07
In a press release on Wednesday, Public Safety Canada announced it give researchers at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology $366,985 over three years to study the movement. The research will be led by Dr. Barbara Perry with Dr. Ryan Scrivens of Michigan State University and Dr. David Hoffman of the University of New Brunswick. For years, the three have been leading the way in researching the far-right in Canada.
In 2015, Perry and Scrivens produced a much-cited survey outlining the far-right ecosystem in Canada, a project that will be expanded with this funding. The research team has announced it will conduct "interviews with law enforcement, community anti-hate activists, and former and current extremists" in order to further understand the movement and growth of far-right extremism in Canada. They will also partner with the UK-based Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD) to "conduct innovative analysis of online content and media coverage, designed to inform local responses to hate speech and hate crime."The far-right has changed significantly since the 2015 study, Perry told VICE in an interview. The groups have grown both in numbers and in boldness, she said.
Since the initial study we've seen the swift rise of anti-Muslim groups like the Three Percent, the Soldiers of Odin, La Meute, and their splinter groups; the emergence of emboldened white supremacists from the shadows; and the organization of far-right terror cell entities like Atomwaffen on Canadian soil. In total, Perry said while they counted 150 groups in their initial study, they're looking at almost 300 now. Perry called the growth a "a disturbing trend that creates a hostile, frightening environment for some communities."