UN Guidelines for solitary…

May 11, 2016

Globe and Mail – Patrick White
Ontario ombudsman calls for end to long-term solitary confinement in jails

Ombudsman Paul Dubé wants Ontario to endorse the UN guidelines on solitary confinement or segregation in its 27 prisons.  The guidelines say 15 days maximum in continuous solitary or it becomes cruel and inhumane.  In a scathing assessment of the provincial prison system Dubé made 27 other recommendations and joined Justin Trudeau who likewise endorsed the UN guidelines and the 15 days maximum for the federal prisons.  Many – perhaps 40% – of those subjected to solitary are, in fact, mentally and isolated instead of treated for their illness. ill.http://www.theglobeandmail.com//news/national/ontario-ombudsman-calls-on-province-to-end-indefinite-segregation-in-jails/article29951434/?cmpid=rss1&click=sf_globe    Related article: London Free Press – John Miner     Mental illness particular concern for inmates in indefinite isolation, says Paul Dubé  http://www.lfpress.com/2016/05/10/mental-illness-particular-concern-for-inmates-in-indefinite-isolation-says-paul-dube   Dubé’s report:  Abolish indefinite segregation: Ombudsman   Written Submission to the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services – Segregation    https://www.ombudsman.on.ca/Resources/Speeches/2016/Segregation–Not-an-Isolated-Problem.aspx

Globe and Mail – Stephen Chase
Arms sales: Saudis use armored vehicles to suppress internal dissent, videos show

Saudi human rights activists say that the videos offered the Globe and Mail from 2012 and 2015 show the use of armored personnel carriers – not Canadian made – against Shia political demonstrators and that Canada should suspend any further sale and transfers in the $15 billion deal.  Amnesty International has warned of an erosion of human rights in the Eastern Province of the kingdom where the Shia minority of about 15 live with most of the oil resources.  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/saudis-use-armoured-vehicles-to-suppress-internal-dissent-videos-show/article29970955/   Related article: iPolitics – Amanda Connolly   Fast’s former spokesperson defends Saudi arms deal    http://ipolitics.ca/2016/05/09/fasts-former-spokesperson-defends-saudi-arms-deal/

National Newswatch – Bruce Cheadle, Canadian Press
UN Declaration on Rights of Indigenous Peoples ‘should not be scary’: Bennett

It’s known as UNDRIP or the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People.  When first presented at the UN in 2007, Canada had some reservations about the declaration but now supports it “without qualification.”  Lawyers who work with Canada’s Indigenous People think it marks the beginning of new treaty making.  http://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2016/05/10/un-declaration-on-rights-of-indigenous-peoples-should-not-be-scary-bennett/#.VzIM-ITyuUk   Related article: Ottawa Citizen – Marie-Danielle Smith     Liberals may use former AFN chief’s input on UN indigenous rights document  http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/national/liberals+former+chief+input+indigenous+rights+document/11910144/story.html

 Toronto Star – Alex Ballingall
Surveillance and predictive policing: Welcome to the ‘safety state’ of tomorrow

Policing technology experts think that the future of policing lies in surveillance and collection of data that allows predictive policing through time, place and type of crime previously committed.  The experts also think that policing will be far more interactive with the community through social media. https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2016/04/28/surveillance-and-predictive-policing-welcome-to-the-safety-state-of-tomorrow.html

Gainesville Star (South Florida) – Brandon Larrabee
South Florida judge rules death penalty fix unconstitutional

A judge has declared unconstitutional any death sentence which was determined on the basis of 10 of 12 jurors agreeing and has declared necessary a unanimous verdict for capital punishment.  The decision comes in the context of a struggle over the regime for capital punishment between Florida and the US Supreme Court.  http://www.gainesville.com/article/20160510/WIRE/160519993

iPolitics – Patrick Gossage
It’s time to talk about a Guaranteed Annual Income — again

While anti-poverty advocates are pleased with the new Canada Child Benefit, they are also concerned that the plan ignores the overwhelming problems around housing and are fearful that the increase in allowances will lead to reduction in the provincial social assistance for the poor or the welfare system.  http://ipolitics.ca/2016/05/10/its-time-to-talk-about-a-guaranteed-annual-income-again/   Related article: Huffington Post (Canada) – Danyaal Reza and Ritika Goel       Safe And Affordable Housing Is A Health Issue    http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/danyaal-raza/safe-affordable-housing-issues_b_9890866.html   Related article: Hamilton Spectator – Steve Arnold    Hamilton poverty: Group says living wage target must rise    http://www.thespec.com/news-story/6548065-hamilton-poverty-group-says-living-wage-target-must-rise-/