This paper describes the militarization of security and police forces occurring in Canada vis-à-vis regulation of the nuclear industry. Based on analysis of access to information requests, we investigate the operations of Nuclear Response Forces (NRFs) on nuclear sites in Canada, including the structural features of these NRFs, and their connections to local as well as national security and policing agencies. Our research explores the post-11 September 2001 impact of "design basis threat" assessment and counterterrorism policy on policing operations. Design basis threat assessment organizes security and policing practices according to adversarial models of military operation. We argue that the literature concerning militarization of policing must be extended to account for how the coordination of private and public security agencies as well as intelligence agencies at critical infrastructure sites facilitates the distribution of military technology and strategy across numerous scales of policing. Commenting on how militarization of security vis-à-vis nuclear proliferation in Canada is affecting some rural police forces, we contend that the design basis threat model of counterterrorism is transforming the strategy and operations of some local police forces working in jurisdictions near nuclear sites.

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Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice
Institute of Criminology and Criminal Justice

Walby, K. (Kevin), & Monaghan, J. (2010). Policing proliferation: On militarization and atomic energy Canada limited's nuclear response forces. Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice, 52(2), 117–145. doi:10.3138/cjccj.52.2.117