July 17, 2014

 Toronto Star – Marco Chown Oved
Canada Border Services deports man to DRC in secret 

The meaning of privacy as it applies to people detained and deported can be a little frightening.  In this case, the Canadian Border Service Agency detained a man for 3 months after his application for refugee status was denied and waited until a day after deporting him to the Democratic Republic of the Congo before acknowledging that the man was even in custody.  The case came to light when the man’s family – six children – contacted the Toronto Star.  Secret detention and deportation seems a little scary for Canada.   Related article:  The Mainlander (Vancouver)    Surrey Rally against “Stealing Citizenship Act”  (A 5 minute video protesting the racial implications of the new immigration bill C-24.)]

 National Post –  John Ivison
Prostitutes back off exposing Conservative clients despite ‘palpable’ hypocrisy over C-36 

Ivison suggests that the hypocrisy around C-36 on Parliament Hill was “palpable” as the hearings progressed and the question of which MP’s are known clients of Ottawa’s sex trade. POWER (Prostitutes of Ottawa/Gatineau Work, Educate and Resist) representative  Frederique Chabot and Emily Symons, chair of POWER,  conceded the temptation to name names but also insisted that “the only time clients would be outed is to protect other sex workers.”   Related article:  Toronto Star – Alex Boutillier and Tonda MacCharles   –   Secret poll shows Canadians deeply divided on prostitution approach

 Metro News
Poll showing most Canadians want pot laws relaxed kept secret by Harper government 

Seventy percent think that the pot laws should be loosened; 37% favour legalization; 33% favour decriminalizing small amounts.  Only 13% favour the status quo and 12% favour harsher laws.  But the survey also showed that pot laws are not a big priority for the Canadian voter.    Related article:  Ottawa Citizen ; Jordan Press    Fantino undecided on future of veterans’ medical marijuana program

Reclaim Justice Network / Tennessee Students and Educators for Social Justice  –   Judah Schept
Prison Re-Form: The Continuation of the Carceral State  

Schept remarks on the growth across the political spectrum of the realization that the mass incarceration is a failed strategy.  In particular, she identifies the political right as coming to the realization of the shift but warns against too easily accepting that the change in rhetoric means a real change in practice.

 Vera Institute of Justice – Ingrid Binswanger
Health Care after Incarceration: Risk Factors, Mortality and the Need for Prevention 

The Focus of an interview with Vera’s Director of Research Jim Parsons is the disproportionately high risk of death among people re-entering the community from jail or prison upon their release.  The solution to a higher than normal risk of death seems to be continuity in health care.  The interview is a 9 minute video.   Dr. Binswanger suggests the use of a ‘patient navigator’ once released  and evidence based treatment for addiction while still in prison.   Also from VERA – Laura Simich Out of the Shadows: A Tool for the Identification of Victims of Human Trafficking    (A tool to identify various human trafficking practices and the needed policy to cope with human trafficking- 7 page downloadable pdf)

 Chestnut Hill (Philadelphia) – Sue Ann Rybak
Mediation program offers a way to solve problems amicably 

The article is focused on the use of a mediator to help with family disputes. The Good Shepherd Mediation Program outreach has a thirty year history of providing help to parents and children before the intensity of the issues cloud resolution.  The program takes referrals from a number of sources including police and the courts.  The director, Shakeya Currie Foreman, is a restorative justice specialist.   Related article:   Family   Restorative Justice, Great Use in Personal Relationships  ( A 9 minute video around the use of RJ in personal relationships.)

 Vera Institute of Justice (US)
Recalibrating Justice:  A Review of 2013 State Sentencing Corrections Trends    

The article is a 48 page downloadable pdf describing and analyzing the activity of some 35 states trying to reduce the number of inmates through sentence reform.  Combined, over 85 bills have been passed and the report offers concise summaries in representative areas of the trends.

 Journal Sentinel (Milwaukee)  –  Gina Barton and Mary Zahn
Another road to justice 

Lynn Bebeau visits prisons and recounts to the inmates her experience as the wife of a slain Eau Claire police officer.  It is part of an effort to delve into ‘truth in sentencing’ and relies on a restorative approach to justice.  The conferencing approach involves victims, offenders, a facilitator and community representatives.