Violent outbursts

 June 7, 2013

 Vancouver Province
New institute at SFU will research conduct disorder, a childhood condition that can lead to a life of violent crime

 Psychologist Robert McMahon, with a grant from the Canadian Foundation for Innovation, has founded a new institute for preventative violence – the Institute for Reduction of Youth Violence, to be located at Simon Fraser University.  Violent outbursts in children under the age of 10 are thought to correlate highly with later delinquency and criminality.  The Institute will focus on developing interventions. 

 CBC News – Meagan Fitzpatrick
9 voices on the ‘not criminally responsible’ reform bill

Bill C-54 has passed second reading in the House and is now before the justice Committee and the Human Rights committee.  This report summarizes the testimony and the positions of both victims and proponents of mental health.  

 Brandon Sun – Mike McIntyre
Convicted teen rapist to receive sentence soon

17 at the time of the offenses, the crown is asking for 10 years in prison for sexual assault during a break-and-enter.  Under the Young Offenders Act, the most is two years.  The youth was on probation for earlier break-and-enter.  10 years would likely be the longest sentence ever and a historic first for a youth for the offence.   

 Hamilton Wentworth District School Board – Lawfield Elementary School
Restorative Justice Training for Parents

Parents are invited to learn about RJ in a one day, free training session that addresses the RJ philosophy and its way of confronting conflict and substituting mediation.  The approach and offering to parents must be novel and involves partnership with John Howard. 

 Heartspeak Productions
Addressing Trauma Part 1: The Impact of Trauma

Dr. Joe Solanto addresses a Symposium for Victim Services and Restorative Justice Programs Working Together held in New Westminster, BC. This is the first of a three part series.  The link includes the playlist for Heartspeak Productions around RJ. (Click on the side-arrow for Parts II and III as well as other video.) 

 Avaaz – The World in Action
Hours to end the drug war in the Americas!

This link is an advocacy group that is attempting to allow countries who have been under the US War on Drugs policy for over 50 years and are suffering from the fallout of ineffective and costly consequences both in human and financial terms.  The link is also an example of the use of social media to mobilize for social and political causes.  The link is offered here since much criminality and imprisonment is also linked to the illicit drug trade; an independence by historic countries of supply will undoubtedly impact us in North America as well. 

 Huffington Post (US) – Blogger Thomas White

When It Comes to Felonies, Every Sentence Is a Life Sentence

White offers an analysis of what he calls ‘collateral consequences’ or laws that further punish anyone convicted and released from prison or from the justice system. 

 USA Today – Grace Meng
Don’t deport all criminal immigrants

Given the current rate of deportations of undocumented immigrants – an estimated 2 million by the end of 2014 at the current rate – Meng, a Human Rights Watch researcher, offers an analysis of the impact on families, particularly for those deportees who have been long term in the US.  The reforms must go beyond one-size-fits-all.  

 Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services (ON)
Enhancing Public Safety through Mental Health Services for Inmates 

The Ontario government has announced a joint venture with CAMH to provide a forensic intervention service to inmates.  The announcement is clear that the service is intended simply for those in remand in order to prepare the inmate for trial.  Similar programs in the US have been criticized for diverting a mentally ill inmate from treatment and into prison. 

 Christian Today
Church of England criticises legal aid residency tests

The Anglican Church submission to the Ministry of Justice consultation says government plans to set a 12 month residency requirement on legal aid leaves a great number vulnerable – from victims of human trafficking to victims of domestic violence to prison inmates – and that legal aid should be provided to those who need it.  

 Kamloops Daily News – Mike Youds
Criminal code reforms misguided, advocates say

 The Kamloops executive director of the Canadian Mental Health, Doug Sage, says that C-54 will not make people safer and may very well make safety worse.  He also thinks that there is bound to be a charter challenge if C-54 passes the Justice Committee and third reading.  The federal government did not consult the mental health community in preparing the legislation.