Solitary, again…

    Nov.9, 2015

 Globe and Mail – Editorial (Nov. 8, 2015)
Solitary confinement needs to go, and it shouldn’t take lawsuits to do it  

The editorial is speaking about the use of solitary in closed youth facilities and advocating for an end to the practice and better supervision of the correctional staff to ensure that the guidelines are respected.  This latest lawsuit joins with a second filed by BC Civil Liberties and John Howard around adult inmates, especially the mentally ill.  The UN declares that solitary for youth and the mental ill is a form of torture.

Hill Times on line – Mark Burgess
Goodale, Freeland, Wilson-Raybould, LeBlanc, Foote take big roles on Cabinet committees

There were some surprises on cabinet appointments and the titles of the ministries.  The influence of these five ministers extends to key government committees.  The committees are particularly influential on decision making, sometimes because they are working collaboratively sometimes because they are driven by certain dominant individuals.  The article offers the committee membership list for these five players, all of whom participate in five committees.
‘It’s something I wish had never happened’: Kevin Vickers shares untold moments from the Ottawa shooting

Vickers was the guest speaker at an annual Ottawa gala for police and politicians.  His speech is a surprising testimony to the humanness of the events on Oct. 22 and at once to the spirit of a small town boy whose origins had so influenced what he understood in later life to be the Canada of which he was so proud.   Related article: Globe and Mail – Canadian Press   RCMP to honour 20 people for bravery during Parliament Hill attack

  Globe and Mail – Canadian Press
Trudeau’s ‘Because it’s 2015’ retort draws international attention

The article reviews the reporting by the international press on the swearing in of Justin Trudeau, most of whom also carried the response to the question about why half the cabinet were women.  The reporting may be a welcomed reprieve from the coverage deriving from his appearance and hair, and perhaps a new international perspective on a recently haggard Canadian image abroad.

CBC News
Hearing in Edmonton murder case sheds light on witness protection program – Accused went to police for protection, but later confessed to his role in the crime

This particular case involves a man involved in witness protection who offered a murder admission to police and later tried to exclude the confession from trial.  What is more revealing is the murky world of witness protection which is mostly shrouded in secrecy in Canada.  This case has eased back the coverings somewhat.

Tracking the Liberal promises –

Here’s a sign of the times, especially for future references.  A web site is devoted to tracking the 184 promises that the Trudeau and Liberals made during the last election. Called the Trudeau meter the site is on-going and detailed, at least at this point.

N. Y. Times Editorial (Nov. 9, 2015) (US)
Prisons and Jails Put Transgender Inmates at Risk

Estrella Sánchez has been in immigration detention and in county jails but she is also trans-gendered.  In fact, she came to the US to escape the discrimination experience in Mexico as a trans-gendered person.  She did not escape physical attacks nor solitary confinement.  Transgendered persons are more likely to be imprisoned than others and while imprisoned face disproportionate risks but also likely less opportunity for medical treatment.

BBC (UK) News Magazine – Jessica Lussenhop
The US inmates charged per night in jail

Here’s one for university students graduating with large debts.  In Marion, Ohio, and apparently in numerous other places, there is a pay to stay system at work that charges prison or jail inmates $50 a day with a $100 booking fee.  The highest known debt owed on release to date is $35,000 and the debtor and former inmate has collection agencies calling to collect.