Mistakes and consequences…

May 17, 2016

Toronto Star – Daniel Brown
Inmate suffering during lockdowns being used as a bargaining chip -Persistent lockdowns create inhuman conditions and are mainly used as a bureaucratic solution to staff shortages

Two inmates in Maplehurst Correctional Complex have been awarded court settlements – one for $60,000 and the other for $25,000 for compensation for the pain and suffering involved in extended lockdown and solitary.  One held on immigration spent almost half of his three years in lockdown; the second, on weapons changes, spent one year in remand, half of it in lockdown; staff shortages are the most frequent explanation, followed by union-management tensions.  https://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2016/05/17/inmate-suffering-during-lockdowns-being-used-as-a-bargaining-chip.html

Narconews (US) – Bill Conroy
Licensing Scheme for Medical Marijuana Market May Be a Boon for the Black Market in Washington State

The legalization of marijuana laws seem to have invoked a kickback from regulators who see under licensing the retail shops as a control feature.  The problem seems to be in part at least the under estimation of the market looking for medical marijuana and the tactic may backfire by helping to sustain the very black market the legalization was designed to solve. http://narcosphere.narconews.com/notebook/bill-conroy/2016/05/licensing-scheme-medical-marijuana-market-may-be-boon-black-market-wash

Vancouver Sun – Editorial (May 12, 2016)
Parole hearings are painful, but necessary

An announcement that someone who was convicted or a terrible crime is now ready for parole can send equally horrendous anger and outcry against the parole and even against the parole system itself.  Easy to get?  No, says the SUN, seven of ten who first become eligible and apply are denied. As Canada begins a review of the parole programs we may do well to heed the Sun’s advice:  “It’s a system for finding justice, which includes an intention to rehabilitate and to return offenders to the community if that’s possible, not simply punish in perpetuity.”   http://vancouversun.com/opinion/editorials/editorial-parole-hearings-are-painful-but-necessary

Quartz – Aamna Mohdin
There are 20 million refugees in the world. Less than 1% of them have been resettled

Last year, the world saw 20 million plus displaced people, mostly fleeing war and violence.  The present climate suggests that many countries receiving refugees are overwhelmed and looking to repatriating the already victims to their strife torn country of origin at repeated and considerable risk. Filippo Grandi, the UN high commissioner for refugees, hopes to at least delay the repatriation by asking more countries to respond. http://qz.com/685198/there-are-20-million-refugees-in-the-world-less-than-1-of-them-have-been-resettled/   Related article: Vatican Radio   Kenyan Bishops on proposed closure of Dadaab Refugee camp   http://en.radiovaticana.va/news/2016/05/16/kenyan_bishops_on_proposed__closure_of_dadaab_refugee_camp/1230147

CBC News – Alison Crawford
Parliament misses Supreme Court deadline for RCMP union bill – Top court had granted an extension, but Mounties remain in labour relations limbo

There has been a great deal of disquiet internally in the RCMP as constables sought the right to form a union for dealing with the command structure, often seen as stubbornly resistant in labour practices.  The force was given the right to form a union by the Supreme Court but the Conservatives at first and now the Liberals have both stalled on the necessary legislation to bring about the SCC mandated change.  The authorizing bill, Bill C-7, has now passed the third reading and is en route to the senate where more resistance seems brewing. http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/rcmp-labour-relations-bill-c-7-extension-deadline-1.3584890

CTV News – Kristy Kirkup, Canadian Press
60 per cent of First Nation children on reserve live in poverty, institute says

A disturbing but confirming report on poverty on Indigenous reserves in Canada has been released by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA).  Over 60% of children on reserves live in poverty. The highest rates are in Manitoba at 76% and Saskatchewan 69%.  Economist David MacDonald, one of the co-authors of the report says:  “One of the interesting things is that despite the fact that we have seen strong economic growth in the 2000s in Alberta in particular, as well as Saskatchewan and Manitoba, we are just not seeing that filter down to the on-reserve level…We are to some degree seeing it trickle down to the off-reserve population … but we are just not seeing the benefits on reserve.”   http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/60-per-cent-of-first-nation-children-on-reserve-live-in-poverty-institute-says-1.2905062    CCPA Full Report: Shameful Neglect:  Indigenous Child Poverty in Canada – David Macdonald and Daniel Wilson   https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/shameful-neglect  (A 36 page downloadable pdf)