News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

January 24, 2020

MANITOBA TO REVITALIZE HISTORIC DAUPHIN COURTHOUSE WITH MAJOR INVESTMENT INTO RENOVATIONS, EXPANSION



DAUPHIN—The century-old Dauphin courthouse will undergo major renovations as part of ongoing efforts to revitalize and modernize Manitoba’s courts, Justice Minister Cliff Cullen announced here today.

“Our government is committed to enhancing Manitoba’s justice system and to help keep Manitobans safe in their homes and communities,” said Cullen.  “Providing accessible, efficient justice services to those living in Dauphin and surrounding communities is a priority, and these investments will support further modernization of Manitoba’s courts.”

The courthouse will be expanded and fully renovated at an estimated cost of more than $11 million to provide improved facilities for Manitobans accessing justice services in the Parkland region including:
•    enhanced courthouse security, including more holdings cells, to keep the public and court staff safe while improving the efficiency of court proceedings;
•    improved interior and exterior accessibility, including accessible washrooms, and more accessible public, court and administrative spaces;
•    improved video-conferencing and meeting spaces for lawyers and their clients; and
•    new administrative and office spaces for court staff, sheriff services and the judiciary.

The design of the courthouse will be finalized in the coming months, with plans to minimize disruptions during renovations, Cullen noted.

Built in 1917, the adjacent Dauphin Correctional Centre (DCC) is the oldest correctional facility in Manitoba and no longer meets modern correctional needs, and it has reached the end of its serviceability.  Operations will begin winding down at DCC and are expected to cease by the end of May, the minister noted. 

The goal is to provide employment for all employees if possible and the Manitoba government will be working with the Civil Service Commission and the union to find creative ways to do so while respecting the rights and obligations contained in the collective agreement, the minister said.

“We will be respecting the collective agreement,” Cullen said. “We want to ensure a smooth transition and will be working with the union in the coming days.”

Those in custody in Dauphin will continue to be held at the six other adult correctional facilities located throughout the province.  There is currently sufficient capacity at the other facilities following an overall decline in the provincial inmate population.
   
The minister noted these decisions align with the goals set out under the Criminal Justice Modernization Strategy, which was released in March 2018.  It focuses on reducing crime, improving public safety, reducing the number of people coming into conflict with the law and improving access to justice.  The strategy is available online at www.gov.mb.ca/justice.

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