Editor: NANCY WRIGHT
By Irving Kulik, CCJA Executive Director
5e World Congress 2021) at Ottawa – Call for Papers
Canadian Criminal Justice Association (CCJA)
You are cordially invited to submit an abstract for a presentation at the 5th World Congress on Probation and Parole! This international event is being organized by the Canadian Criminal Justice Association in collaboration with the Parole Board of Canada, Correctional Service Canada, Public Safety Canada, and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. It will be held at the Delta Hotel in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Consider attending this networking opportunity to learn about the latest in probation and parole around the world. The theme of the event will be “No One Left Behind: Building Community Capacity”. This Congress will explore the challenges, opportunities and success stories involved in building community capacity and sustaining partnerships that support successful reintegration for diverse groups of offenders in an evolving global environment.
Manitoba Criminal Justice Association (MCJA) Crime Prevention Breakfasts
By Mike Cook, MCJA President and Defence Counsel at SCVC Law
In this letter about MCJA’s annual Crime Prevention Breakfast (2019), an event held each November in Winnipeg, Mike Cook – MCJA President and Defence Counsel at SCVC Law – reports on the success of a new format employed at the 2019 Breakfast, where four speakers were given the floor to offer their respective perspectives on a theme of Community Involvement in Public Safety: Mr. James Favel, the Director of Winnipeg’s Bear Clan Organization; Dr. Hygiea Casiano, a prominent Winnipeg Psychiatrist; Ms. Kate Kehler, a popular speaker having had many roles within various social organizations helping ensure the needs of those who come into conflict with the law are being met; and, Chief Danny Smyth, Chief of the Winnipeg Police Service. The 2019 Breakfast was very well received, and Mr. Cook urges those who will be in Winnipeg this coming November to visit the MCJA website (www.mcja.ca) and purchase tickets for MCJA’s 2020 Crime Prevention Breakfast.
The Real Divide: When Alberta’s Criminal Justice Policy is More Progressive than that of the Trudeau Government
By Anthony N. Doob, Professor Emeritus of Criminology at the University of Toronto
/ Cheryl Marie Webster, Professor of Criminology at the University of Ottawa.
The authors, Dr. Anthony Doob, a member of the Order of Canada, and Dr. Cheryl Webster, decry the fact that over the course of the last two decades criminal justice policies have increasingly been based on short-term political interests rather than a desire for comprehensive, principled, and thoughtful criminal justice reform. They suggest that, in the past, principled law reform was created under both dominant political parties. Currently, it would appear that the Conservatives and the Liberals alike have lost their will and/or ability to create coherent sensible criminal justice policy. As an example of how criminal justice policy-making has changed, they describe the administrative actions of former Alberta Premier Ralph Klein’s Conservative government in the 1990s when Alberta effectively reduced incarceration at provincial facilities by 32%. Notably, this decarceration was accomplished without any changes to laws, using administrative policies alone. Doob and Webster contrast the values-based criminal justice policies of past governments which were often evidence informed, with today’s approach which appears to be primarily based on immediate, short-term political considerations. Canada has always had some justice policies that were rooted largely in political considerations rather than thoughtful analysis of criminal justice issues. What has changed is that thoughtful policy development has all but disappeared. The question for Canadians, in the 2020s, is whether we will ever again witness the principled, thoughtful criminal justice policy development that had defined us for over a century.
The State of the Criminal Justice System: A performance monitoring framework for
Canada’s Criminal Justice System
The Department of Justice Canada (the Department) developed the first national performance monitoring framework for Canada’s criminal justice system (CJS). Launched in May 2019, the State of the Criminal Justice System Framework (the Framework) increases our overall ability to monitor, and therefore understand, how well the criminal justice system is performing in relation to nine multifaceted objectives. The information collected is available to the public in different forms, such as the Annual Report or the online interactive Dashboard – both of which are available at www.justice.gc.ca/eng/cj-jp/state-etat/index.html.
From Where I Stand, Hope Matters
By Margot Van Sluytman
Award-Winning Poet and Restorative-Justice Researcher
In this article/book review, the award-winning poet and victimologist Margot Van Sluytman fathoms Jody Wilson-Raybould’s bold new non-fiction, From Where I Stand: Rebuilding Indigenous Nations for a Stronger Canada, in the crucible of a book of poetry, Hope Matters, penned by Lee Maracle and her daughters Columpa Bobb, and Tania Carter. Van Sluytman embraces the inspiration of Wilson-Raybould’s non-fiction book and the book of poetry by Maracle, Bobb, and Carter, noting that writing of hope and justice always involves risk. Reading these two books side by side, notes Van Sluytman, is to know that the personal and political are necessary allies: From Where I Stand underscores that being allies means addressing The Indian Act in light of The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, while Hope Matters shines a light of unclouded wisdom on the aspect of bridge-building and reminds us that “justice calls us to burn brightly together because each of our voices matter”.
Bill S-207: An Appropriate Exception to the Jury Secrecy Rule
By François Boillat-Madfouny
Criminal Law Graduate Student and CCJA’s Policy Review Committee (PRC)
On December 12th, 2019, Bill S-207, An Act to Amend the Criminal Code (Disclosure of Information by Jurors), had its first reading in the Senate. Championed by Senator Boisvenu, this bill follows Michael Cooper’s Bill C-417 that passed through the House of Commons with all-party unanimous support, but which died officially when the writ dropped to mark the start of the 2019 federal election. Read more at www.justicereport.ca.
Segregation in Canada and Other Western Democracies
By Mark Addo
This article reports on the long-standing history of the use of segregation in Canada and other Western democracies despite increasing evidence of adverse impacts on mental health. Exploring the various segregation practices in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Australia, Germany and France, author Mark Addo helps identify whether they meet the international standard for segregation in prison operations as given by the United Nation’s Nelson Mandela Rules. While all of these countries except the United States and Australia have relevant legal frameworks, Addo emphasizes that prison administrations must nonetheless ensure careful oversight of prison officers to ensure proper implementation of the rules and laws and reduce abuses of solitary confinement in their penitentiaries.
Young Researcher Contributions
Revue systématique sur la trajectoire de placement des jeunes fugueurs : La fugue
comme vecteur d’instabilité?
Summary of a poster presentation (carried out at Congress 2019 co-hosted by the Societe de criminology du Quebec and the Canadian Criminal Justice Association) speaking to the situation on runaways – co-created by Ruth Lamercie Larrieux – Candidate à la maîtrise en criminologie, Université de Montréal; Ariane Daviault – Coordonnatrice de projet, Institut universitaire Jeunes en difficulté (IUJD); Sophie Couture – Chercheure Institut universitaire Jeunes en difficulté (IUJD); and Sonia Hélie – Chercheure Institut universitaire Jeunes en difficultés (IUJD).
The Impact of COVID-19 on Criminal Court Systems Around the World
By Sheridan Barr
Mount Royal University
Ms. Barr would like to acknowledge the support and assistance of Prof. Winterdyk and his course “Comparative Justice Systems” for which a longer version of this article was submitted.
COVID-19 presents a unique challenge to the traditional face-to-face methods of service delivery within criminal court systems. Courts around the world have had to partially suspend their activities and begin handling court matters based on assessments of urgency, raising the concern of trial delays.
COVID-19: Implications for the Criminal Justice System
By Catharine Pandila
Justice Studies Program, Mount Royal University.
Ms. Pandila would like to acknowledge the support and assistance of Prof. Winterdyk and his course “Comparative Justice Systems” for which a longer version of this article was submitted.
No one knows how the Covid-19 pandemic will play out after a vaccine or cure is found, however, there is little doubt that significant changes will be on the horizon and have a substantial and lasting impact on the criminal justice system.
Opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the Association’s views, but are included to encourage reflection and action on the criminal justice system throughout Canada.