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In this section of the report, we will review community corrections, both the current and revised model, and its linkage to earned parole. Our focus is on risk assessment and community supervision strategies; CSC/Police liaison; responding to breaches of parole; electronic monitoring; consequences of reoffending while on conditional release; management challenges for women and Aboriginal offenders in the community; CSC's work with community partners and volunteers, and the need for enhanced citizen and community engagement.
(i) Status/Structure/Current Priorities
As of April 2007, 8,447 federal offenders, or about 39% of the offender population, were under federal supervision, on conditional release, in the community—15% were on day parole, 47% on full parole, 36% on statutory release and 2% on long-term supervision orders.
There are 71 parole offices in 8 districts, which are responsible for supervising offenders under federal jurisdiction. CSC currently manages 16 community correctional centres (CCCs) for offenders on conditional release and on long-term supervision orders. Approximately 200 community residential facilities (CRFs), commonly called halfway houses, are operated by community-based agencies under contract with CSC.
Offenders can be released into the community under the following conditions:
- Temporary absences/work releases are granted to offenders to attend medical appointments or community programs, to visit family members or to go to work;
- Day parole is a form of conditional release granted by the NPB or a provincial parole board, which requires the offender to return to a penitentiary or a community-based facility (CCC or CRF) daily;
- Full parole is a form of conditional release granted by the NPB or a provincial parole board, which allows the offender to serve a portion of the sentence in the community under supervision;
- Statutory release (SR) is an automatic release of an offender after two-thirds of the sentence, during which the offender remains under supervision in the community; and
- Long-term supervision order (LTSO) is imposed by the court ordering an offender to be supervised in accordance with provisions in the CCRA for up to 10 years after the warrant expiry date.
The community supervision of offenders on parole, statutory release, and under long-term supervision orders is entrusted to federal parole officers, or to private sector, for-profit and not-for-profit agencies, such as the John Howard Society, the Salvation Army, St. Leonard's Society of Canada, Native Counseling Service of Alberta, and the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies, under contract to CSC.
Informed and engaged citizens and communities are integral to safe offender reintegration. CSC depends on the communities it serves to accept and support offenders. The Panel believes that this is critical to public safety.
CSC is facing significant financial constraints that inhibit its ability to reallocate existing resources to address emerging pressures. The Service has received limited, temporary funding for 2007–09 to address key priorities: community staff safety, staff training, and new community programming and community mental health initiatives to ensure the continuation and reinforcement of programming and treatment implemented in the penitentiaries. These priorities and others have been identified by CSC to respond to the evolving challenges in accommodation, supervision and intervention requirements, which are being posed by a changing offender population.
(ii) Proposed New Model
In this section, we focus on recommendations that will contribute to the maintenance of public safety by ensuring gradual release controls are adhered to by the offender in returning to a law-abiding life in the community. We see the release of offenders supported by adequate community infrastructure, and supervision and programming interventions, all within an employment focus. The following chart provides a summary of the key processes supporting the preparation, transition and reintegration of an offender to the community and outlines the key recommendations impacting on the elements of these processes.
The Panel notes that the community corrections component of the federal correctional system is the most visible to Canadians and therefore comes under the greatest scrutiny and becomes the target of the most criticism. Public acceptance of CSC's conditional release approach is often criticized when things go wrong. Yet, CSC's most important contribution to safe reintegration is a structured and supervised re-entry to the community while the offender is still under sentence. CSC faces the challenge of maintaining public confidence while attempting to accomplish two goals—maintaining public safety and ensuring the offender adheres to gradual release controls in returning to a law-abiding life in the community. Balancing the community's desire for safety with the offender's right to be released presents a continuing challenge to the criminal justice system.
A 'cold release' at the end of an offender's sentence to an unsupervised environment is not effective corrections. The purpose of conditional release should continue to be to contribute to the maintenance of a just, peaceful and safe society by managing the timing and conditions of released offenders in a way that will best facilitate their rehabilitation and safe reintegration into the community as law-abiding citizens.
In this respect, the role of the NPB provides the window for offender entry to the community. NPB is an independent, administrative tribunal that works at arm's length from CSC in making decisions about the release of offenders. It imposes special conditions on offenders released to the community, e.g., abstinence from alcohol or drugs, attendance at treatment programs. Under CCRA S. 102, parole is granted to an offender if, in the opinion of the Board, (i) the offender will not, by reoffending, present an undue risk to society before the expiration, according to law, of sentence, and (ii) the release of the offender will contribute to the protection of society by facilitating the reintegration of the offender into society as a law-abiding citizen.
Linkages to Earned Parole and Conditional Release
The implementation of earned parole should respect the positive benefits of mitigating reoffending that can be achieved using a gradual conditional release program that is part of the offender's correctional plan. This principle should guide CSC in ensuring that every effort is made to assist offenders in being released to the community prior to their warrant expiry dates with meaningful opportunities for employment.
The Panel has recommended the review of two key components of conditional release, day parole and full parole, to ensure they are aligned with the earned parole approach in CSC institutions. This will mean that the release of offenders is supported by community infrastructure, supervision and programming interventions, all within an employment focus. Safe reintegration will require comprehensive release planning and closer liaison with municipal social and police services and provincial community services, and innovative employment-focused supervision strategies. There will also be a related requirement to review community infrastructure and partnerships with service providers as a result of the elimination of statutory release.
Risk Assessments and Community Supervision Strategies
CSC currently submits an extensive review of the offender's case history, and risk and reintegration potential, for consideration by the NPB. The review considers such information as the offender's criminal history, offence cycle, institutional behaviour, program involvement, psychological or psychiatric risk assessments, and release plans, including community support requirements.
The community supervision strategy can address several factors, including the frequency of contact with the parole officer, accommodation in a community-based residential facility, participation in correctional and treatment programs, and urinalysis testing.
All offenders on conditional release are required to abide by basic rules and stated behavioural expectations. For example, an offender's movement can be restricted to a specified geographic area. In addition, the NPB can impose additional special conditions, e.g., the offender must abstain from drugs, alcohol and/or intoxicants, must follow psychological and/or psychiatric counseling.
Earlier in the report, the Panel recommended a review of community release planning in the context of an earned parole model. The Panel fully supports conditional release to the community in such a parole model. However, changes are needed in correctional planning, the case management process, definitions of offender accountabilities, and requirements for offenders to actively and successfully complete their correctional plans and demonstrate positive behaviour in the community, especially when a new emphasis on employability and jobs is affected.
CSC should be commended for the quality of its community supervision staff and the work they do. They have a challenging role: intervener, counselor on managing offender needs, and supervisor of offender behaviour to assess risk on an ongoing basis—all rolled into one.
The Panel notes that parole officers do their jobs very well, delivering appropriate supervision and intervention activities that contribute to the safety of the community. Community parole officers assess the offender's progress in the community on an ongoing basis, through regular contact with the offender, employers, family members, etc. They practice a multidisciplinary approach to community supervision, relying on input from police, psychologists, program providers, program facilitators, halfway house staff, etc., and using a variety of tools to effectively manage risk in the community: curfews or other special instructions, temporary placement of offenders in a communitybased residential facility, counseling (psychological/psychiatric) and/or correctional, educational and vocational programs, etc.
The Panel reviewed an integrated model used in the Pacific Region for a short time and noted the benefits that resulted from institutional and community parole officers working in tandem to develop a comprehensive release plan for the offender.
The Panel was made aware of the concern of community parole officers, and those working in CSC penitentiaries, with their heavy caseloads which affected their ability to balance their interaction with offenders with requirements for report preparation and the entry of information into CSC's Offender Management System.
The Union of Solicitor General Employees (USGE) told the Panel:
Of concern to the USGE … is the 1 to 25 ratio of offender to parole officer caseload. In many regions of the country this ratio is being used as a guideline only, seeing more parole officers with a caseload of 27 to 30 on a regular basis. In essence, this increase is causing burn-out of parole officers. It is virtually impossible for staff to take advantage of a normal eight hour work day or regular vacation time.45
While recognizing the need for accurate, timely and comprehensive documentation, parole officers asked for assistance in streamlining their reporting requirements and improving the effectiveness of the reporting systems that they use. The Panel supports the need to streamline documentation requirements.
CSC/Police Services Liaison
Community correctional liaison officers are located in 17 communities across Canada. They are dedicated police officers employed by CSC to work closely with community parole officers. Their responsibilities include monitoring the activities of high-risk offenders, acting as a link with police and other relevant agencies in order to enhance information sharing, and helping reduce the number of 'unlawfully at large' offenders. The Panel has reviewed this initiative and met with many of these officers across the country. Although the program is in its infancy, initial benefits have already been in the exchange of operational information and finding offenders who are unlawfully at large. The Panel supports CSC's continued efforts to build this important community-based initiative. At the same time, the Panel recognizes the need to collect security intelligence information in the community, which can be linked to similar information from penitentiaries to provide a complete picture of actual and potential criminal activity.
On October 6, 2004, in Yellowknife, NWT, Parole Officer Louise Pargeter, arranged to meet an offender at his home for a scheduled visit. RCMP later found her murdered in the offender's apartment. Officer Pargeter was the first CSC community parole officer murdered by an offender in CSC's history.
As an interim safety measure, then acting Commissioner Don Head issued a temporary policy bulletin instructing community parole officers that all visits to homes of offenders with criminal histories involving death or sexual assault would be conducted by two officers for at least the first three months of the offender's supervision.
This policy has since been modified, and the current Commissioner's Directive 715, Community Supervision Framework states:
- Tandem supervision for home visits is mandatory for offenders with a criminal history involving a death and/or any sexual offence, for at least the first three months of the offender's supervision period, including the first 90 days of a temporary absence program.
- Prior to the completion of the initial three-month supervision period, the Parole Officer and Parole Officer Supervisor will review the offender's case to determine if tandem supervision is still necessary and what safety measures are sufficient and appropriate to ensure staff safety. The decision of this review will be clearly documented in a Casework Record.
There has been much discussion in CSC over the appropriate way to handle visits to an offender's home. During discussions with community parole officers, the Panel reviewed procedures now in place to ensure the safety of parole officers, particularly when visiting offenders' residences. Most parole officers expressed the opinion that no place should be declared 'out of bounds' when supervising an offender. Other parole officers expressed frustration at what they perceived to be constraints placed on their professional judgement.
Given the utmost importance that the Panel places on the safety of staff, combined with the belief that there should be no place in the community that is "off limits" to the parole officer, the Panel agrees that a parole officer should discuss individual risk assessments and supervision strategies with his/her supervisor. The Panel supports the current CSC policy.
Breach of Parole—Power to Arrest
The Panel received representations from police services groups to consider the current lack of authority by police officers to arrest without warrant persons on parole who are believed to be in breach of conditions of parole.
At present under CCRA S. 137, a peace officer (usually a parole officer) can arrest with warrant, or when there is a belief on reasonable grounds that a warrant is in force to apprehend and detain the parolee, for up to 48 hours in order to obtain an electronically transmitted copy (a tele-warrant) of such a warrant.
At present, police cannot arrest without a warrant a federal offender for breach of parole conditions. So if police find a federal offender and someone on provincial probation, and both are suspected of being in breach of a condition, the person on probation can be arrested without warrant in certain circumstances under section 495 of the Criminal Code of Canada (CCC), since breach of probation is an indictable offence under S. 733 of the CCC. However, breach of parole is not an offence under the CCC or the CCRA so the federal offender cannot be arrested without a warrant.
Although the Panel recommends that breach of a condition of parole be made an indictable offence under the CCC, the Panel believes the more effective approach is to address the issue within the CCRA. That way the consequences of the breach and the impact on public safety can be properly assessed by the parole officer and the NPB, and if the conduct so warrants, the offender can be returned to a penitentiary.
In cases where the present use of issued warrants or tele-warrants is seen to be inadequate, an approach like those in CCC S.495 SS. (2) should be considered. This provision allows for arrest without warrant in any case where a peace officer believes on reasonable grounds that arrest is necessary to establish the identity of the person, or that failure to arrest would lead to the failure of the person to appear in court.
The Panel examined the need to consider the use of electronic monitoring of particular offenders with high risks and needs in the community. We heard a variety of opinions on the matter, from applying this technology to all released offenders under conditional release in the community to using it only for selected offenders under extended supervision by CSC.
Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner Julian Fantino told the Panel:
Law enforcement agencies across the nation are in favour of offenders being equipped with electronic monitoring devices while in the community. This additional method of ensuring compliance with release orders will certainly reduce the time and resources required for police to identify and apprehend violators. Successes of electronic monitoring include higher compliance rates, resulting in increased public safety … This tool can be used for every person released in the community and not just the ones who are violent/sex offenders.46
However, the Panel is not convinced that a general application of electronic monitoring for all federal offenders on conditional release is required. The Panel is concerned about the costs and benefits associated with implementation, and the level of effectiveness associated with continuous monitoring and response capacity for the conditionally released population. The Panel is aware that CSC is undertaking a pilot project on electronic monitoring, and suggests that the evaluation focus on the concerns raised by the Panel and consider plans to supervise selected offenders in conjunction with police services and other appropriate community groups. The Panel also suggests that CSC look at other jurisdictions that have been using this technology for some time in order to determine what best practices' could be tailored to CSC requirements.
Reoffending while on Conditional Release
The Panel has heard both success stories and failures of offenders while on conditional release in Canadian communities. We appreciate that the failures are far less than the successes but every failure results in a new victim and must be taken extremely seriously. Throughout this report, the Panel has emphasized the importance of offender accountability. This accountability does not end at the doors of the penitentiary but rather, transcends into the community where this accountability is heightened.
The Panel is of the view that reoffending on conditional release must be treated very seriously by the courts. Currently, Section 743.6 C.C.C. states:
Notwithstanding subsection 120(1) of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act, where an offender receives, on or after November 1, 1992, a sentence of imprisonment of two years or more, including a sentence of imprisonment for life imposed otherwise than as a minimum punishment, on conviction for an offence set out in Schedule I or II to that Act that was prosecuted by way of indictment, the court may, if satisfied, having regard to the circumstances of the commission of the offence and the character and circumstances of the offender, that the expression of society's denunciation of the offence or the objective of specific or general deterrence so requires, order that the portion of the sentence that must be served before the offender may be released on full parole is one half of the sentence or ten years, whichever is less.
The Panel encourages the judicial system to make greater use of this section of the Code and, in the cases where offenders on conditional release reoffend, that this section of the Code be used aggressively to reflect the gravity of the criminal act committed while on release and that subsequent sentences are ordered to be served consecutively not concurrently. Furthermore, the Panel is of the view that, in the case of repeated reoffending by offenders, consideration be given to amending the Canadian Criminal Code to further elongate the period prior to parole eligibility.
Programs in the Community
As a condition of release, some offenders are required to continue participating in programs that address the factors that led to their criminal behaviour. This can include programs to address sex offending, substance abuse, family violence, etc. Offenders released to the community are also assisted with educational programs, employment programs, support programs, and faith-based programs. CSC has always depended on the communities to provide support to offenders in their reintegration, but community capacity varies and is often limited. CSC's accredited correctional programs have always included community intervention and aftercare; however, offender enrolment and completion have traditionally been limited due to a lack of widespread availability and the duration of the program.
CSC faces challenges in providing programming that can build on the positive results achieved in the institution, while meeting the delivery requirements imposed by the availability of trained staff and community resources. The Panel notes two important initiatives being undertaken by CSC.47
CSC has developed the Community Maintenance Program (CMP), a multi-target program designed to increase timely access to community aftercare services for higher risk offenders, especially in remote locations. Its continuous admission and risk-based intensity level is customized to the ever-changing needs and challenges that offenders face in the community. The program is delivered by qualified and trained facilitators, including correctional program officers, non-government organization service providers, parole officers, and psychologists in the community.
In addition, the Counter-Point program is a moderate-intensity community-based correctional program that has been accredited by international experts. Its principal goal is to help participants change their criminal values and attitudes and take more responsibility for their criminal actions. The Counter-Point program appears to be effective. A recent study compared a sample of offenders who had completed the Counter-Point program with a sample of offenders released to the community. For those offenders completing the Counter-Point program, the study showed a 32% reduction in suspension rates, a 46% reduction in revocation rates, and a 38% reduction in new offences.
The Panel endorses this program but is still concerned by the low completion rates for these programs.
The Panel encourages CSC to enhance the employability/employment component of its community programs, and to ensure that evaluation measures are in place to measure its effectiveness.
The Panel is aware that community-based correctional programming can significantly reduce the likelihood of breaches of conditions. Likewise, the Panel is confident that the employability/employment addition will reduce the likelihood of breaches in parole. Parole revocations are a predictor of an increased level of custody, non-discretionary release and violent reoffending. These programs should help reduce the involvement of offenders in breaches of release conditions.
The Panel notes that in 2006–07 the completion rates for all community programs was just over 50% (see Appendix D). For women the completion rate was just over 30%. Programs for Aboriginal offenders were not rated. The Panel strongly urges CSC to review its community program base and the resources required to support the implementation of maintenance programming. Particular attention has to be given to developing programs for women and Aboriginal offenders, and to the relationships that should be in place to support the offenders' transition from institutional-based to community-based programs.
The Panel notes that continuing correctional programming in the community must be a key component of the offender's conditions of release. This becomes even more critical in implementing an earned parole approach and in emphasizing offender employment in the community. CSC must have the capacity to deliver programs in the community.
Challenges for Women Offenders in the Community
There is a need to update the CSC Community Strategy and enhance transition services in supervision, accommodation and intervention. The women offender population has steadily increased over the years. Short-, medium- and long-term options are being developed to ensure quality program delivery and reintegration efforts can be maintained. There is a need to improve employment services for women on release.
CSC is in the process of implementing a National Employment Strategy for Women. It should be reviewed in the context of the recommendations made by the Panel on employment.
Even with these initiatives by CSC, the Panel notes the lack of community infrastructure to support the special needs of women under conditional release.
This concern was raised by Elizabeth White, Executive Director of the St. Leonard's Society of Canada:
Community residential facilities exist across the country with the majority of them being located in urban settings. This allows residents access to a range of community social services and opportunities for employment. In general, numbers have not supported CRF options in small and rural settings. A particular constraint is faced by women. Owing to their small numbers in the corrections system, small houses are appropriate and their size does not allow for economics of scale. The issue of small houses has been on the agenda for both voluntary sector agencies and CSC for at least 10 years. It merits a focused joint approach at this time and a solution to the difficulties.48
Because of significant variations in the size of the women offender population and its unique risks and needs, there is a need to review current infrastructure gaps and develop appropriate alternatives to minimum-security penitentiaries and community residential facilities. This will be particularly important when considering the impact of earned parole and the emphasis on employment.
CCRA Section 81 supports a wide variety of custodial or service delivery arrangements for the care and custody of Aboriginal offenders. An offender could be transferred to the care and custody of an Aboriginal community at any time during his or her sentence. This can involve the supervision of offenders on day parole, full parole, or statutory release. In addition, there are 24 halfway houses for Aboriginal offenders across Canada.
CCRA Section 84 gives CSC the authority to involve the Aboriginal community in release planning for offenders. The intent of Section 84 of the CCRA is to encourage the reintegration of Aboriginal offenders into Aboriginal communities.
CSC must re-examine its current initiatives with respect to conditional release into Aboriginal communities, either on reserve or to rural and urban centres. This review should include the impact of the introduction of earned parole and the emphasis on employment.
Partnering with Service Providers
Continuity of care is important, both during the offender's sentence and during the transition from sentence to post-warrant expiry status. Since CSC's mandate is to provide services only to offenders serving federal sentences, when an offender's sentence ends, CSC's responsibility for directly supporting the offender ends. CSC's support for offenders with mental health needs is normally transferred to the provincial health system.
Community correctional centres (CCCs) currently accommodate offenders on day parole or statutory release. Over the years, the offender profile at CCCs has changed to meet the special risks and needs of offenders. For example, CCC Martineau in Montreal accepts offenders with mental health problems, and Chilliwack CCC, in Chilliwack, B.C. accepts offenders requiring palliative care.
Community residential facilities (CRFs) exist to promote the successful reintegration of offenders into the community. A CRF provides suitable accommodation, monitoring and intervention, and provides social and economic support that helps conditionally released offenders become law-abiding citizens.
The Panel notes that successive changes in legislation enabled the NPB to impose residency at CCCs and/or CRFs in order to manage risk. As a consequence, there is an overwhelming demand for beds for offenders with residency requirements. CSC has undertaken several internal reviews of community-based facilities and is moving to improve the existing infrastructure. The Panel recommends that CSC reconsider current initiatives in the context of the Panel's report.
A full review of the community infrastructure is needed to respond to the current and emerging requirements for offender management in the community. Several factors contribute to the need for review: The combination of changes in supervision and intervention requirements associated with the changing offender population profile, recommendations to eliminate statutory release, and accelerated parole review; the enhanced focus on offender employment; and community support requirements associated with the unique needs of Aboriginal and women offenders, and offenders with mental health problems.
Locating Parole Offices and Community Correctional Centres
The Panel has reviewed CSC's current guidelines on consultations on facilities' including parole offices. A presentation made by Andrew Aitkens, Vice-President of the Ottawa Centretown Citizen's Community Association, and discussions on vulnerable communities highlighted the need for zoning bylaws to define parameters for the proximity of businesses that pose a risk to community safety. The recommended review of community infrastructure should ensure that consultations take municipal bylaws into consideration. Community concerns about safety make housing released offenders a more complex challenge.
Citizen and Community Engagement
Enhancing the capacity of our partners to provide support services and assistance is critical to an integrated approach to public safety. While CSC can bridge some gaps in the short term, an investment in long-term community capacity is required to assist offenders' reintegration efforts, and ultimately to ensure community safety.
The Panel believes that when Canadians know more about the federal correctional system, they have more confidence in it. Enhanced awareness is crucial to a community's willingness to assist offenders in reintegrating safely into their communities.
John Braithwaite of LifeLine, a national initiative that assists long-term offenders and those serving life sentences, told the Panel that:
A concerted coordinated comprehensive effort is required to raise the understanding and appreciation of Canadians as to what really works and what is simply punitive, vengeful, and superficial.49
An effective approach to providing safe communities depends on dialogue and collaboration—locally, regionally and nationally—in order to successfully address information gaps. As noted by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM), "municipal governments must be engaged in discussions on correctional issues that affect community safety."50
The FCM/CSC/NPB/Public Safety Canada's Joint Committee on Community Corrections meets quarterly and is co-chaired by CSC's Director of Citizen Engagement and Community Initiatives. The committee's mandate is to improve and preserve quality of life for Canadians by collaborating and creating opportunities for dialogue and information exchange among its members. In support of community safety and crime prevention, CSC, NPB, and Public Safety Canada are examining opportunities to work with the FCM in developing and implementing concrete initiatives that support local joint committees on community corrections. Strengthening CSC's partnership with the FCM will enhance participants' appreciation of the role of municipalities in helping to support the safe reintegration of offenders.
Volunteers in the Federal Correctional System
Volunteers make an essential contribution to public safety for many years by enhancing the work of CSC and by creating a liaison between the community and the offender. CSC benefits from the contributions of more than 8,000 volunteers in penitentiaries and in the community. CSC volunteers are involved in activities ranging from one-time events to ongoing services to offenders and communities, including tutoring, social and cultural events, religious and spiritual programming and substance abuse programs.
The Panel recognizes and applauds the strong commitment and contributions made by volunteers in the correctional system. Their efforts directly contribute to safer Canadian communities. However, the Panel echoes the position of Bill Huzar, National Co-Chair of the National Volunteer Association of CSC, that since federal legislation requires volunteer involvement in corrections, there should not be a discrepancy between the value that CSC places on their involvement and the financial resources that are required to support and sustain the essential services they provide. "There should be adequate financial resources provided to recruit, train and sustain volunteers," Mr. Huzar advised the Panel during consultations.51
In response to the challenges posed by the changing offender profile, Mr. Huzar raised the increasing need to recruit and train many types of volunteers: younger volunteers (ages 20 to 40), volunteers with specific skills in working with offenders with mental health problems and physical disabilities, Aboriginal volunteers, and volunteers from a wider variety of ethnocultural backgrounds and faith traditions, and volunteers that offset a gender imbalance.52 In essence, CSC has to encourage getting 'community' back into Community Corrections.
CSC considers establishing positive and reciprocal relationships with Canadian communities a necessary prerequisite to support public safety. Most offenders will eventually return to the community. Upon their release, whether at the end of their sentence or under conditional release, successful reintegration requires the support of citizens and communities. To that end, CSC is committed to engaging community partners and working collaboratively for safe communities. The Panel fully supports CSC's work with community partners. The Panel met with various groups of volunteers and wants to applaud their contributions. The Panel recommends to CSC that they continue to be given full support.
- The Panel recommends that a more comprehensive community release plan be developed that
- measures the achievements attained by the offender against the requirements identified in the penitentiary correctional plan, as the basis for the development of a community correctional plan;
- clearly links conditional release conditions, imposed by NPB, with accommodation, supervision and programming interventions and employment initiatives;
- details the responsibilities and accountabilities of the offender to achieve reintegration objectives; and
- sets terms and conditions for formal reviews of progress to the end of the offender's sentence.
- The Panel recommends a full review of the capacity and capability of community residential facilities; in particular the current lack of community accommodation alternatives available for women offenders, as well as CCRA S. 81/84 agreements with Aboriginal communities.
- The Panel recommends that additional attention should be given to
- strengthening CSC's guidelines to include more extensive community consultation when selecting locations of both community correctional facilities and parole offices; and
- ensuring requests to Public Works for site acquisition include full consideration of amendments to municipal bylaws that provide for 'no go zones' that will protect potential vulnerable communities or areas.
- The Panel recommends that current community case management processes be reviewed to identify how a better balance can be achieved among the many responsibilities of community parole officers, in particular, to identify process efficiencies and ensure that the benefits of dynamic supervision are maintained.
- The Panel recommends that CSC review its community program base and the resources required to support the implementation of maintenance programming. Particular attention should be given to the development and availability of community programs for women and Aboriginal offenders.
- The Panel recommends that CSC update the Community Strategy for Women and enhance transition services in the areas of supervision, accommodation and intervention, including the consideration of initiatives supporting employment and employability for women on conditional release.
- The Panel recommends that CSC include a rationale for the community correctional liaison officers in the business case that it prepares on the management of security intelligence.
- The Panel is particularly concerned about safety and security in the community and recommends that
- where supervision strategies warrant a home visit and the profile of the offender creates a cause for concern, either a second parole officer or a police officer be tasked to accompany the parole officer and that such a decision be taken with the parole officer's supervisor with the critical factor for decision being the safety of the parole officer;
- an evaluation of the results of the CSC pilot project on electronic monitoring consider amendments to the Corrections and Conditional Release Act to expressly permit the use of electronic monitoring as a condition of release, and expand the scope and term of the Canadian Criminal Code Section 810 orders that specifically authorize electronic monitoring and residency restrictions; and
- consideration be given to amending section 137 of the CCRA to allow police services to arrest without warrant under conditions similar to those that now exist in Section 495 (2) of the Canadian Criminal Code.
- The Panel recommends that CSC consider in its business case supporting the enhancement of its security intelligence initiatives the creation of community security intelligence officers and the strengthening of community correctional liaison officers to enhance the sharing of information among CSC and its partners in the criminal justice system at the municipal, provincial and national levels.
- The Panel recommends that CSC complete its review of the use of electronic monitoring and consider initiatives that have been undertaken in other correctional jurisdictions to determine what 'best practices' could be tailored to CSC requirements. Results should be incorporated into policy proposals outlining advantages and disadvantages and resource impacts and recommending future options for this technology.
- The Panel recommends that CSC continue to invest in and enhance the capacity and involvement of its community partners to provide support services and assistance to offenders as active community involvement is the key to maintaining community safety.
- The Panel recommends that CSC enhances its programs of public education programs in the community and becomes more proactive and purposeful in communicating with Canadians or community capacity may slowly erode.
- The Panel recommends that the judicial system to make greater use of Section 743.6 of the Canadian Criminal Code and, in the cases where offenders on conditional release reoffend, that this section of the Code be used aggressively and that subsequent sentences be ordered to be served consecutively not concurrently.
- The Panel recommends that, in the case of repeated reoffending by offenders, consideration be given to amending the Canadian Criminal Code to further elongate the period prior to parole eligibility.
45 "USGE Submission to the CSC Review Panel," USGE, June 4, 2007, page 6.
46 "Submission to the Independent Review Panel with Respect to Correctional Service Canada," OPP Commissioner Julian Fantino, June 5, 2007, page 9.
47 The Panel notes that CORCAN maintains 39 community employment centres in communities across Canada to assist offenders in finding employment. The challenges facing these centres is addressed in the section of the report on "Work—Employability and Employment."
48 "SLSC Submission to the CSC Review Panel," May 28, 2007, page 4.
49 Submission to the CSC Review Panel, John Braithwaite, LifeLine, page 5.
50 Letter to Lynn Garrow, Head, CSC Review Panel Secretariat, from Massimo Bergamini, Director, Policy Advocacy and Communications Department, Federation of Canadian Municipalities, August 28, 2007.
51 "Stronger in Broken Places—A Report Submitted to the CSC Review Panel," The Volunteer Membership of the CSC National Volunteer Association, June 2007, page 13.
52 Ibid., page 11.
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