Way more than 1,200…

Mar 1, 2017

National Post – Kristy Kirkup
Number of missing, murdered indigenous women ‘way bigger than 1,200,’ minister says

In mid-February, Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett reflected on the experiences of the initial work of the inquiry on Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women.  “It is bigger than 1,200,” she said. “Way bigger than 1,200.”   She says that in addition to those on the list, the inquiry is also revealing those who may have been victims and escaped, and the pain and heartbreak brought by the close calls.  Status of Women Minister Patty Hajdu says that the revelations bring one where “you need to be able to empathize without losing yourself in the grief.” http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/canadian-politics/number-of-missing-murdered-indigenous-women-way-bigger-than-1200-minister-says  Related article: Nationtalk – Ontario Making Criminal Justice System Faster and Fairer in Barrie   http://nationtalk.ca/story/ontario-making-criminal-justice-system-faster-and-fairer-in-barrie  Related article:  Parkland On-line   What Indigenous restorative justice processes look like in Sask   http://www.parklandonline.com/what-indigenous-restorative-justice-processes-look-like-in-sask/

Rabble.ca – Cathy Crowe
A winter of discontent and homeless deaths

Street nurse Cathy Crowe, a tireless and enormously respected worker with the homeless in Toronto, offers a sobering reminder that homeless people don’t just die on the street in winter but that no homeless person dies of old age either.  In fact, the average age for a female is 39 and a male 43.  But as she points out, in looking for a crisis response from Toronto, Mayor John Tory has said that even one death on the street is too many.  87 homeless people have died since he made that assessment.  http://rabble.ca/blogs/bloggers/2017-02-27t000000/winter-discontent-and-homeless-deaths  Related article:  The Guardian.com (UK) – US News – Liz Barney  Doctors could prescribe houses to the homeless under radical Hawaii bill – Newly introduced bill would classify homelessness as a medical condition, as research suggests healthcare spending falls when people have been housed   https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/feb/28/hawaii-homeless-housing-bill-healthcare-costs

Blogger Russell Webster (UK)
Prison service to be responsible for youth custody

The UK press has been alive with ministry information around the changes in the operations of prisons and the discretion of the governors.  Now, behind a lot of changes, in the prisons themselves, parole and bail, comes a decree that puts youth services for children in jail back in the hands of those prison authorities with a separate division to be known as Youth Custody Services which will report directly to the prison services CEO. http://www.russellwebster.com/youth-custody-hmpps/

Globe and Mail – Sean Fine
Alberta drops 15 criminal cases in resources crunch

In what is described as the first large scale stay of prosecutions in Canada following the Jordan decision, an Edmonton senior prosecutor has stayed 15 cases for lack of resources to pursue them.  The cases included cases with violence and other types of charges that have minimum mandatory penalties attached.  The decision involved what the Edmonton prosecutor is calling “triage” or assigning priority as is done in emergency wards of health care cases.  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/alberta-resorts-to-large-scale-triage-for-courts/article34170249/   Related article: Globe and Mail – Sean Fine    Ontario prosecutors told they can skip preliminary inquiries to avoid delays    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/ontario-crowns-told-they-can-skip-preliminary-inquiries-to-avoid-delays/article34116312/   Related article: Globe and Mail – Robyn Doolittle    Unfounded:  The challenge of handling sex assault in Canada’s North    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/investigations/the-challenges-of-handling-sex-assault-in-canadas-north/article34159543/   Related article Ottawa Citizen     Anne London-Weinstein and Leo Russomanno:  Why we need preliminary inquiries  http://ottawacitizen.com/opinion/columnists/london-weinstein-and-russomanno-why-we-need-preliminary-inquiries

Globe and Mail – Patrick White
Yukon man found mentally unfit after solitary faces another trial

Solitary confinement is back again, this time because its impact has caused so much deterioration to the mental health of Michael Nehass that the Supreme Court of the Yukon has decaled a mistrial at the sentencing stage of the proceeding.  The mental deterioration, in the judgment of the court, made Nehass unable to participate in his own sentencing as a dangerous offender. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/yukon-man-found-mentally-unfit-after-solitary-faces-another-trial/article34169566/

CBC News – Go Public  – Rosa Marchitelli
Landlord pays high price for renter’s medical marijuana grow-op

Landlord Daryl Spencer is discovering new risks to renting his house: the decision by the renter to use the house for growing marijuana.  In his case, the downstairs tenant got a medical marijuana grow-ops license and the insurance company cancelled his coverage, declaring the house a high risk defined as “a greater likelihood of water damage, mould, fire, vandalism and burglary.”  It appears that there is little a grow-ops landlord can do, legal or not.  http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/go-public-medical-marijuana-landlord-tenant-insurance-pulled-1.3985875   Related article: Ottawa Citizen – Jacquie Miller    Why I work at an Ottawa marijuana dispensary: ‘Budtenders’ arrested for drug trafficking speak out   http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/why-i-work-at-an-ottawa-marijuana-dispensary-budtenders-arrested-for-drug-trafficking-speak-out