Victim-offender dialogue…

  July 8, 2014

 Correctional Services of Canada
Victim-Centered Victim Offender Dialogue in Crimes of Severe Violence  –  20 Essential Principles for Corrections-Based Victim Services 

Recently released, the principles are specific to victim-offender dialogues and what normative principles must be component parts to any such exchange.  The principles, intended for cases with severe violence, were developed by the National Standards Committee, assume a post-conviction but free participation of both with resource persons and are not intended for other types of encounter such as reconciliation.

 Canadian Law Times – Yamri Taddese
Prison segregation rising 

In spite of lessons from Ashley Smith, Taddese says that there has been no substantive change in the use of administrative segregation.  In 2011-2012, the latest year we have the figures for, there were 8700 placements in segregation, 80% of them for disciplinary reasons, an increase of about 700 over the last five years.  Many of the segregation orders are the institution’s way of dealing with mental illness or potential for self harm.  Howard Sapers, the Correctional Investigator, says his recommendation for independent adjudication (after five days) before prolonging inmates’ stay in segregation has gone nowhere.

 National Newswatch: Mike Blanchfield, Canadian Press
Swan to Harper: don’t criminalize prostitutes

Amid concessions from Peter MacKay that the new prostitution laws will likely go to the SCC, the Manitoba Attorney General is looking for a whole section dealing with prostitutions communicating for the purposes to be deleted from the bill.   Related article:  Canadian Press – Mike Blanchfield     MacKay first witness as marathon prostitution bill hearings begin Monday    Related article:  CTV News    Prostitution bill ‘offends’ the Charter, legal experts say   Related article:  CBC News   Former sex workers make their cases in prostitution bill debate

 CBC News – Laura Peyton
Omar Khadr wins appeal, will be transferred from federal prison- Khadr should have had youth sentence, judge rules  

The Alberta Court of Appeal has ruled that Khadr should serve his sentence in a provincial institution, not in a federal maximum security prison.  The judge ruled that the sentence was only available under Canadian Law for a juvenile under Canadian law.  The ruling ignores the recent dispute about whether there was in fact any legal basis for the trial and sentence at all.  Cf related story from July 3, 2014.    Related articles:    Related article – Toronto Star – Michelle Shepherd   U.S. ‘drone memo’ offers legal ammunition in Omar Khadr case

 Globe Mercury (Kitchener, ON)  –  Annisa Rampersad
Don’t keep jailing people without treating their addictions, mental health problems 

Rampersad suggests that the revolving door reality for many provincial prisoners reflects that there are few if any programs to help inmates once released.  $180 / day times 9,000 inmates is a lot of money to pay for simply sitting on the problem in jail and not engaging in any remedial response – especially around addictions – beyond locking people up.

 Daily Mail-on-line (UK)
Meet former gang member, juvenile inmate and high school dropout Lucy Flores who could become the lieutenant governor of Nevada 

Here’s one of those rags-to-success stories involving a lady who says there are Lucy persons like her everywhere.  Presently an assemblyman for Nevada, she is running to be the next lieutenant governor as a Democrat and encouraging others with her background to assert themselves.

 Huffington Post (US) – Randy Jurado Ertll
U.S. Should Show Compassion toward Children 

The US Border authorities are expecting over 90,000 children to arrive unaccompanied at the southern US borders this year.  A growing number, including President Obama, think the solution is to return the children immediately and along with advertizing in countries of origin persuade these children to stay home.  The UN sees the issue as one of human rights of the child.  The US strategy is not working, and say critics, not humane.

National Ron Wiebe Restorative Justice Award 2014 – Call for Nominations – Deadline for nominations extended to July 18, 2014  –  Contact:  or  Chantal Morisset at 613-992-8390.