Caring in prisons…

Sept 25, 2020 

Prince Albert Now (SK) – Nigel Maxwell
Frustrated by lack of contract, federal correctional officers stage rallies across the country

The federal guards are now two years without a contract and many are unable to get annual leave because of shortages among staff.  Concerns around injury on the job are also voiced.  “James Bloomfield, the prairies regional president for the Union of Canadian Correctional Officers (UCCO), told paNOW outstanding issues include time allotted for leave… We have the highest PTSD rates and we can’t get annual leave,” Bloomfield said.”   Related article: Prince Albert Now – Nigel Maxwell   Indigenous group calls for judicial review of country’s prisons, incarceration policies   (Ed note:  Solitary / segregation identified as a major contributor to four suicides.)  Related article: New Westminster (BC) Record – Jim Bronskill, The Canadian Press  Liberals promise action on biases in justice system, policing   Related article: CBC News Ideas from the Trenches – Rachel Fayter   Former inmate taps into her prison experience for ‘groundbreaking’ PhD research – Rachel Fayter’s work focuses on the resilience of criminalized women   

 Basic Income Canada Network:
BICN Policy Options

This is a look at the policy options available should Canada wish to establish a basic income practice, an outcome dictated by the strong weaknesses the pandemic has highlighted in social welfare and UI policy.  There is both a full report and a summary offered at the primary site.  The report offers three options with some variation.  (French version of the report at the link.)   Full Report (63 page downloadable pdf)

National RJ Symposium (NRJS) Calls for presenters – Virtual Symposium – Nov. 16, 17, 2020

The National Restorative Justice Symposium (NRJS) is an opportunity to convene a national gathering of practitioners, researchers and academics, community members, justice professionals, policy and law makers, educators, other experts and stakeholders, to host engaging and stimulating presentations applicable to restorative justice. Restorative Justice Week (RJW) has been celebrated in the third week of November since 1996. The 2020 NRJS Committee are seeking presenters for a virtual symposium on November 16 to 17, 2020. The theme is Responsive and Restorative Justice: Lessons Learned for a Global Pandemic. The 2020 virtual conference will lead up to our next face to face gathering, which is tentatively scheduled for 2021 in North Vancouver, BC, on the Coast Salish Territory   Contact: Steve Lauer at   Steve Lauer, Program Manager, Community Safety and Crime Prevention Branch, Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General.  Facebook page:

 WKRC 12 – (Ky) – Walter Smith-Randolph & Stephanie Kuzydym
Northern Kentucky police departments add social workers to police force

For some time in Northern Kentucky social workers have been responding to 911 non-violence calls and doing follow-up on prior police visits, carrying police radios.  Alexandria Police Chief Lucas Cooper whose police officers participate in the scheme, says:  “We realized we were responding time and time again to the same problems and we were putting band-aids on them for the night, but we weren’t getting to the root of them, and, so, it was taking up a lot of our officers’ times to continue to respond to these things without a real solution.”

The Marshall Project (US) – Weihua Li
Is Violent Crime Rising In Cities Like Trump Says? Well, It’s Complicated.  Trump speaks of “anarchy and mayhem” in cities. Here’s what the data really shows.

As the presidential debates draw closer, crime is bound to be an element.  This link may prove a reliable and trustworthy commentary on the statistical measure of crime in the US.  The Marshall Project is widely recognized for its scholarly and articulate analysis of any matter around crime and criminal law.  One advantage is that the Marshall Project uses private agency  analysis and compares to the FBI stats which are compiled basis on voluntary participation by the 18,000 police forces.  Trends are generally more accurate, are provided for the impact of both the pandemic and the protests (including police generated violence), and graphs are helpful as well.

N.Y. Times (US) – Rainier Harris
This Is the Casual Racism That I Face at My Elite High School – Unexpectedly, the school did something about it.

Harris readily concedes that his high school, the Jesuit run Regis High on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, has dealt quickly and decisively with overt racism.  He also suggests that with some prompting the school adopted a restorative justice approach to responding to “the casual racism” as well as the subtle forms of racism deriving from the practice of affirmative action (Harris is Black among a predominantly white school population).  An encouraging read.

Twitter from BC lawyer Neil Chantler

No charges against Maple Ridge (BC) RCMP who shot a mentally ill 54 year old male three times after the man’s sister called for police assistance but without a crisis moment.

After 13-month investigation, the IIO has refused to have Crown counsel consider criminal charges against the Maple Ridge RCMP officer who shot and killed 54-year-old Kyaw Din in his bedroom. My clients, Din’s family, are devastated.  The ILL, the police investigative body, have decided that charges won’t be laid.  Says Chantler:  “This case is a stark reminder of the inadequacy of police training and policy in situations involving mental health.”

World Economic Forum (Davos, Switzerland)
The Great Reset

The link offers the first of a series intended to examine how the Global community can respond in a co-operative manner to the adverse impact of Covid-19.  “There is an urgent need for global stakeholders to cooperate in simultaneously managing the direct consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. To improve the state of the world, the World Economic Forum is starting The Great Reset initiative.”