Monthly Archives: June 2013

June 2013 Vol 5 (2) Edition

Our readers are aware that the British Columbia and the Canadian Criminal Justice Association (CCJA) are hosting our biannual Congress in Vancouver from October 2-5, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Vancouver. The theme of Congress is 21st Century Justice: the Economics of Public Safety.

This special issue of the Newsletter provides details about each substantive session at Congress 2013. Click each session in the agenda to go to abstracts and information about that session. The editors advise that there may be specific program or timetable alterations as the Congress approaches but the Newsletter “blog” will be updated. See also the CCJA website for future updates.

This Congress has been designed to be of interest for the judiciary, all criminal justice branches and related agencies and specifically takes an inclusive focus for youth justice and municipal officials. The program includes:

  • 45 plenary, sub-plenary, break-out and poster sessions, and exhibits. See agenda below.
  • Informative pre-congress tours, training and other activities on October 2nd. (Pre-sign up for these is required).
  • Three sessions on the Thursday evening that are open to the public at no cost.
  • Be sure to check out the early-bird fee reductions, special affordable rates for seniors, and attendance-sharing options for students and agencies. Please go to the CCJA website for more detail.

Congress Agenda


Wednesday, October 2, 2013.

Pre Congress Training and Tours (see CCJA website for details):

  • Circle of Courage Training with Martin Brokenleg PhD.  For thousands of years, American Indian cultures nourished respectful and courageous children without employing punitive discipline. Dr. Brokenleg presents “The Circle of Courage” which offers concrete strategies for creating environments in which all young people can grow and flourish.
  • Tour of Nanaimo Correctional Centre Therapeutic Community.
  • Walking tour of Vancouver Downtown Eastside.
  • Tour of Salvation Army Belkin House.
  • Tour of Fraser Valley Institution for Women, and Pacific Institution.

Thursday, October 3, 2013.

Keynote (8:30-10:00):

Breakout Sessions (10:30-12:00):

Breakout Sessions (1:30-2:30):  

Sub Plenary Sessions (3:00-4:30):

Public Sessions (7:00-8:30):


Friday, October 4, 2013.

Plenary Session (8:30-10:00):

Sub Plenary Sessions (10:30-12:00):

Breakout Sessions (1:30-2:30):  

Breakout Sessions (3:00-4:30):


Saturday, October 5, 2013.

Working Session (7:15-8:15):

Sub Plenary Sessions (8:30-10:00):

Plenary Session (10:15-12:15): 


Program Details

Keynote Address

a) Investing in Children and Youth: A look at rights and outcomes.   Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond,  B.C. Representative for Children and Youth.

This presentation will argue that Canada, as a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, not simply comply with the Convention, but also define and measure the outcomes that tell us how well we are complying so that we can define how we must improve and where we must more effectively invest in our children and youth.

b) The role of the public service in developing evidence based policy.  Alex Himmelfarb, York University, former Clerk of Privy Council.

Abstract not available

Back to Congress Agenda

Civil Unrest

a) Responding to Civic Unrest: Social Control in an Era of Social Media – Vancouver’s 2011 Riot. Christopher J. Schneider PhD, University of British Columbia, Kelowna.

The Vancouver Stanley Cup riot was one of the first that involved social media influencing both police actions and public perceptions. Building on ongoing research, this presentation will examine the impact of social media to better understand how such information is likely to affect police work and social control going forward.

b) Managing major crowd disturbances: Vancouver case studies. Valerie Spicer, Simon Fraser University, Lee Patterson, Vancouver Police Department and Matt Walker, Royal Roads University.

Balancing the nature of public events with public safety is a complex decision-making process which revolves around numerous factors including the psychological dynamics associated with crowd behaviour, the nature of the event and police tactics used. These factors will be explored based on two recent actual events in Vancouver.

c) Crowd dynamics: Simulating major crowd disturbances. Valerie Spicer, Simon Fraser University, Lee Patterson, Vancouver Police Department and Matt Walker, Royal Roads University. 

Crowd disturbances can be understood best by considering the interaction between individual factors of the participants and situational/social factors. This presentation will use two mathematical models to explore the impact and interaction of these variables on outcome. The results have implications for developing crowd-management strategies.

d) Forecasting major crowd disturbances after unplanned events. Valerie Spicer, Simon Fraser University, Lee Patterson, Vancouver Police Department and Matt Walker, Royal Roads University. 

Employing the Early Warning analytical framework, this presentation will evaluate two unplanned events that resulted in violence and property damage: the shootings of Trayvon Martin and Mark Duggan. In particular, media sources are examined to expose any potential indicators of protest activity that could have helped officials prepare better.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Responding to Offender Housing Needs

a) H2H: A Model for Second Stage Housing for the ‘Hard to House’.  Elizabeth White and Anita Desai, St. Leonard’s Society of Canada. 

This presentation will highlight the findings of a recent project to identify promising practices in providing second-stage housing for offenders returning to the community. The results suggest this model can provide an effective and cost-efficient means of assisting this hard-to-serve population while contributing to public safety.

b) Walking Together: A Peer Support Program for Women Transitioning from Incarceration to Community.  Barbara Hagen, The Elizabeth Fry Society of Calgary, Gayle Rutherford, University of Calgary & Jennifer Sputek, Community Member. 

A recent study demonstrates the need for effective peer support for women offenders returning to the community. In addition to reviewing these findings, this presentation will discuss the opportunities and challenges in implementing an effective peer support program.

c) Peer Mentoring: A Train the Trainer Approach. Elizabeth White, St. Leonard’s Society of Canada

Abstract not available.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Crime Prevention and Economics

a) The Greatest Crime Prevention Program in North America.  Jim Hackler PhD, University of Victoria. 

Despite the longstanding debate over whether crime prevention programs are effective, even today, few evaluations meet scientific standards. A notable exception is the Nurse Family Partnership which meets rigorous scientific standards, uses large samples, has a follow-up of over 15 years, shows significant reduction in crime, has demonstrated success among different populations and is very cost efficient.

b) The Crime Drop and the Economics of Public Safety.  Graham Farrell, Gary Bass, Simon Fraser University, Shabnem Afzal, BC Ministry of Justice and Paul Brantingham, Simon Fraser University. 

Like many countries, Canada has experienced unprecedented and unanticipated declines in many crime types in recent years. This study compares international, national, cross-provincial, British Columbian provincial and municipal trends. Similarities and differences at different levels of analysis provide insight into the causes and implications of these unanticipated declines in crime.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Who Gains, Who Loses, Who is Affected by Prison Building

a) Exploring stakeholder perceptions of locating prisons in communities. Beverly-Jean Daniel and Jeanine Webbe, Humber College. 

The present study investigated community reaction to a new prison being built in South Etobicoke, ON. Concern was raised about public safety, community reputation and property values. However, the study also suggests opportunities for enhancing the relationship between the institution and the surrounding community.

b) Canada’s Prison Construction Profiteers.  Justin Piché, University of Ottawa and Greg McElligott, Humber College. 

It is possible that the recent boom in Canadian prison construction reflects economic rather than justice-policy goals. This presentation will evaluate this construction boom in terms of two theoretical models, will identify who will benefit from this boom, and will consider what some of the collateral consequences may be.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Working With Aboriginal Communities

a) Partnership with Aboriginal Communities. Brenda LePage, Correctional Service Canada and Claire Clarefoot, Buffalo Sage Healing Centre.

To address challenges in providing appropriate services to incarcerated Aboriginal women, CSC has partnered with Native Counselling Services of Alberta to provide the first Section 81 (of the CCRA) healing facility for women. Despite barriers and challenges, this service has had a significant impact that could be adopted in other jurisdictions.

b) Sts’ailes & CSC’s Kwìkwèxwelhp Healing Village – Our unique relationship.  Hilda Fehr, Correctional Service Canada, Harvey Paul, Sts’ailes and Robert Harrison, Correctional Service Canada. 

A special relationship has been developed between Kwìkwèxwelhp Healing Village (a CSC minimum security institution) and the First Nation community of Sts’ailes. This presentation will describe the development of this relationship which has been recognized as a new and innovative model towards addressing the over-representation of Aboriginal people who are in conflict with the law.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Tracking the Progress to Engage the Video Game Generation: Responding to Diverse Needs in Youth Justice 

Mark Shuler and Marg Stanowski, Operation Springboard, Toronto. 

This session will describe recent developments in the Community Learning HUB, an innovative program that combines evidence-informed content with interactive technology and engaging facilitation techniques to provide an effective and responsive skill development experience for youth. Results achieved over the past 2 years will be shared.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Criminal Justice Policies and their Impact upon Indigenous Populations

a) The Challenges of Aboriginal Youth in our Prisons. Jon Friel, Sherwood Park, Alberta. 

This session provides an evaluation of prisoner and staff beliefs and behaviours that may or may not be concordant with the Canadian prison rehabilitation and treatment philosophies and their accompanying policy and procedures. The speaker will address the effects on rehabilitation and treatment when prisoners and staff perceive different ethno-cultural issues and challenges.

b) The Impact and Implications of Contemporary Crime Control Policies for First Nations. Juan Marcellus Tauri, Queensland University of Technology. 

Based on earlier research, this presentation will offer an Indigenous-focused critical analysis of the crime-control industry’s contribution to Indigenous over-representation in the criminal justice system. The paper focuses on two questions: 1) why are current strategies and policies largely ineffective and 2) why are policy workers and others starting to blame us for this situation?

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

From the Monolith to the Kaleidoscope: New Approaches to Regulation and Control of Psychoactive Substances around the World. 

Donald MacPherson, former Drug Policy Advisor, City of Vancouver, Executive Director, Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, Alison Holcomb, ACLU, Seattle, Washington and  Dana Larsen, BC Sensible Change Society.

This workshop will summarize global drug policy reform activities and consider public health, public safety and economic implications of these legal changes.  Case studies from Colorado, WashingtonState and Uruguay (legalilzation of Cannabis, and British Columbia (the proposal Sensible Police Act), among other examples, will be considered.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Seeking Safer Communities at Less Cost

a) Making Alberta Communities Safer: The Challenges of Sustainability. John Winterdyk, Mount Royal University and Crystal Hincks, Impact & Evaluation Research Services. 

The speakers will provide an overview of innovative crime prevention projects in Alberta including impact evaluations of these efforts. They will consider some of the key lessons learned and some major pitfalls encountered. The presentation will critically explore the economic impact and sustainability issues for many of the programs reviewed.

b) Alternatives to Conventional Justice: Ontario’s Direct Accountability Program and London, Ontario’s Pilot Pre-Charge Adult Diversion Program.  Heather Callender, St. Leonard’s Community Services and Corinna Kitchen, Ministry of the Attorney General of  Ontario. 

This presentation will describe an innovative program in Ontario that seeks to resolve minor criminal offenses without a full criminal court process. The program seeks to reduce court delays while holding offenders accountable through community-based sanctions. Successes and challenges to date will be discussed.

c) Effectively Responding to the Rising Challenges of Mental Health and Addictions in Corrections: How to Effectively Treat These Issues to Reduce Recidivism. Heather Kerr, Stonehenge Therapeutic Community and Heather Callender, St. Leonard’s Community Services.

The speakers will describe two unique community-corrections interventions that incorporate a specialized focus on mental health and addictions issues to help improve community reintegration while reducing criminal recidivism. The importance of staff selection and training will be highlighted as will the strength-based interventions that are employed in both treatment models.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

The In-depth Profiles of Mentally Disordered and Violent/Gang-involved Youth Offenders Sentenced to Specialized Community Probation

Adrienne Peters, Raymond R. Corrado PhD, Simon Fraser University and Sandra Manzardo, B.C. Ministry of Children & Family Development. 

This presentation will provide the in-depth risk and protective profiles of two subsamples of young offenders assigned to specialized (mentally disordered or gang-involved) youth probation caseloads. Speakers will examine the programs utilized by these offenders, and the association between risk factors, intervention programming, and reoffending.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Reducing Harm Through Harsher Sentences or Safer Needles?

a) Thrown Under the Omnibus: Implications of the Safe Streets and Communities Act.  Sandra Ka Hon Chu, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, Seth Clarke and Richard Elliott, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network. 

This presentation proposes to explore the evidence pertaining to mandatory prison terms for drug offences, including impact on public health, and to consider the Safe Streets and Communities Act in light of the Canadian government’s constitutional and international human rights obligations to respect the rights of people in prison.

b) Safe Cells: building the case for prison needle and syringe programs in Canada.  Sandra Ka Hon Chu, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, Seth Clarke & Annika Ollner, Prisoners with HIV/AIDS Support Action Network and Richard Elliott, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network. 

The lack of prison-based needle and syringe programs is a serious concern and has led to litigation by a variety of concerned service organizations. This presentation will describe the public health and human rights arguments in support of such programs, and will discuss the strategic steps taken in developing a litigation challenge.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Elderly inmates and parolees: a correctional reality saturated with ageism (bilingual session).

Michel Gagnon, Maison Cross Roads, Montreal. 

The lack of programs and services for aging offenders is likely due to our attitudes about aging and crime, rather than lack of knowledge about the needs of this growing population. This session will focus on such attitudes and beliefs and suggest ways forward. Visual materials will help document the reality of the lives of elderly inmates.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Differing International Views on Sexual Mores

a) Legislators’ perceptions of homosexual and lesbian rights in contemporary Trinidad and Tobago. Wendell C. Wallace, University of the West Indies. 

The debate over homosexual and lesbian rights has expanded globally. This presentation will report on the results of a survey of elected and unelected officials of the National Parliament to analyse legislator’s perceptions of homosexual and lesbian rights in Trinidad and Tobago.

b) Student’s Perspectives on Prostitution in Trinidad and Tobago. Wendell C. Wallace, University of the West Indies. 

The illegality of prostitution in Trinidad and Tabago is currently under public discussion. This study recruited Trinidad and Tobagonian undergraduate and graduate students to investigate their knowledge of, and attitudes toward, prostitution and prostitution laws in the island. The results and their implications for possible changes to the current legislation will be discussed.

c) Hot pants at the border: Operationalizing anti-trafficking frameworks. Julie Ham, Monash University, Sharon Pickering, Australian Research Council and Alison Gerard, Charles Sturt University. 

This presentation examines the process by which Australian government human anti-trafficking practices risk reproducing the blind spots and limitations of an anti-prostitution conceptualisation of trafficking. Specifically, subjective assessments of women’s sexuality shaped officials’ determinations of potential criminality or victimization. The implications of these findings for the Canadian context will be discussed.

d) Sex workers’ perspectives on the economic and social costs of a sex work licensing framework: Lessons from Vancouver. Julie Ham, Monash University, Sharon Pickering, Australian Research Council and Alison Gerard, Charles Sturt University. 

This presentation will consider different public opinion and legal frameworks about prostitution in two similar major cities: Vancouver and Melbourne. Drawing on 55 interviews with sex workers in Melbourne, this presentation will discuss some of the lessons of legalising sex work in an Australian city that shares cultural similarities with Vancouver.

e) A case Study of Homophobic Experiences in the Trinidad & Tobago Police Service. Karen Lancaster-Ellis, University of the West Indies. 

A qualitative research design was used to investigate homophobia among Trinidad and Tobago police officers and victims of such homophobia. The results are seen as helping authorities align local operations with global best practices.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Raising the Roof: A Symposium On Correctional Facility Planning, Design, Financing and Construction (from 1:30 to 4:30pm; replaces also “Is Big Really Bad” and “Prison Design Trends” sessions)

Larger and fewer, harder and more technologically advanced prisons dominate the correctional prison landscape than 30 years ago. In the context of the economics of public safety in the 21st century, what should be guiding the industry for the future?

The intent of this symposium is to bring together speakers who will comment on and enjoin discussion from a national or international experience about the key determinants of “raising roofs” in the future. The determinants will variously be: political will and public policy, correctional mission, legal and human rights implications, financial procurement and maintenance options, and state of the art construction and technology applications.

Steve Carter, Carter Gobal Lee, USA will include comments about national and international trends, public policy impacts on current design, the benefits of spreading the responsibility for the quest for reducing recidivism as broadly as possible through public-private projects, pay for success programs, and other creative business solutions.

Charles Lammam, Resident Scholar on Economic Policy, The Fraser Institute, Vancouver, BC will include comments about  3P options and their strengths and weaknesses for the provision of purpose built public infrastructure. What seems to be the best business model in the Canadian experience?

Raji Mangot, Counsel, BC Civil Liberties Association, Vancouver, BC. will include comments about the legal and human rights implications of the trend to bigger, technologically intrusive and more dense housing of prisoners. Are we losing sight of a successful outcome objective in the rush for security and cost containment?

Melody Kotyk, Alberta Correctional Services Division and Jason Said, ONPA Architects Edmonton will respectively talk about their recent experiences with building, opening and operating the Edmonton Remand Centre, the largest remand facility in Canada. Edmonton Remand evidenced the use of cost effective current construction methodologies, and incorporates the optimum use of current and state of the art technology in security, surveillance, and inmate processing.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Dismantling the Silos – The Efficiencies of Inter-Agency Cooperation

Kenneth Foo, Singapore Corp. of Rehabilitation Enterprises, Teal Maedel and Andrew McWhinnie, Correctional Service Canada.

This workshop will consider the advantages, efficiencies and challenges of inter-agency cooperation. Specific examples will be drawn from experiences in Singapore, the operation in Canada of the National Joint Committee of Senior Criminal Justice Officials, and the Canadian and global experiences of Circles of Support and Accountability.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Building Collaborative Approaches for Smart Justice

Barry Stuart, Chief Judge of the Yukon Territory (retired) and Brenda Morrison, Simon Fraser University. 

Smart Justice is based on the simple idea that the best responses to crime improve safety, support victims, protect families, reduce re-offending and involve communities. It does not waste resources on responses that are known to be ineffective or unnecessary. Join a Circle dialogue with others looking for constructive outcomes that re-build lives and communities.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Making Community Supervision Work: Training Initiative in Community Supervision (STICS)

James Bonta PhD, Public Safety Canada and Sean Huston, BC Corrections Branch

There are significant challenges in applying the principles of effective rehabilitation into probation practice. STICS is an evidence-based model of community supervision that helps probation officers better apply the principles of effective intervention in their everyday work with the result of increased professional satisfaction and reduced recidivism among their clients.

 ↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Mental Health Commission of Canada – Changing How We See Mental Illness in the Justice System

Judge Allan Lefever, Provincial Court of Alberta, Patrick Baillie PhD, Alberta Health Services, Jude Swanson, Kitsilano-Fairview Mental Health Team and Mike Pietrus, Mental Health Commission of Canada.

The criminal justice system, particularly the police, is often the first point of contact for people with mental illness in need of help. Such encounters can lead to anxiety and frustration on both sides. This session will focus on misconceptions about mental illness while addressing innovative ideas to help police balance upholding the law with helping special-needs individuals.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

The Criminalization of HIV Non-disclosure in Canada

Cécile Kazatchkine & Alison Symington, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network. 

Canadian law has taken a harsh view on individuals living with HIV who do not disclose prior to sexual activity. This workshop will use a 45-minute film to spur discussion on the impact of legislation on women living with HIV as well as some of the myths and misunderstandings underpinning public policy.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Community Environmental Justice Forums: Empowering Communities to Influence How Companies Right Their Environmental Wrongs

Gwenda Laughland and Sheila Richardson, BC Ministry of Environment.

This session will describe an innovative and successful approach to resolving environmental violations committed by regulated companies. Rather than relying on a court process, a forum based on restorative justice principles attempts to reach a consensus resolution among stakeholders. The successes and challenges of this model will be discussed.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Public Safety and Poetic Justice

Margot Van Sluytman, The Sawbonna Project, Calgary

Based on her research and experience, the speaker will consider how poetry and narrative are and can be used in relation to public safety. She will dialogue about the value of understanding criminal justice as an ongoing paradox-steeped process, where we are invited to embrace the need to include many voices and many stories.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Plenary Session

Reduce Crime & Save Money: Using Evidence and Economics to Help Government Work Better – Washington State’s (Evolving) Approach

Steve Aos, Washington State Institute for Public Policy

Can government achieve lower crime levels and a more efficient use of taxpayer dollars by applying the principles of evidence-based decision making, coupled with return-on-investment analysis?  This presentation will describe the evolution of a 15-year process in the State of Washington testing this question.  Findings and lessons learned will be highlighted


↑ Back to Congress Agenda

The Economic Impact of Targeting Early Risk Factors

Christopher J. Koegl PhD, Ontario Correctional Institute and Child Development Institute. 

The speaker’s research on conduct-problem children has shown that higher risk scores for future antisociality are associated with more mental-illness related health encounters during childhood and adolescence, and more encounters with the criminal justice system. These results will be reviewed and the potential for significant fiscal savings through early intervention considered.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

A Criminal Justice System for the 21st Century

a) A Criminal Justice System for the 21st Century – White Paper on Justice Reform. Geoffrey Cowper QC, Fasken Martineau DuMoulin LLP. 

The speaker will review progress toward meeting recommendations from a major report seeking major changes in the British Columbia criminal justice system. While significant progress has been made in new policy and legislation, and establishing processes to bring about change, it remains to implement key initiatives that are system-based, evidence-based and accountable.

b) The Need for Innovation in the Criminal Justice System. Shawn Tupper, Public Safety Canada.

In an effort to improve cost effectiveness, the Canadian government is considering innovative approaches such as social impact bonds and Social Enterprise in order to improve offender reintegration, reduce pathways to offending and victimization, and enhance the safety of Aboriginal communities.  Current drivers and challenges of exploring such new approaches will be discussed.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

A Comprehensive Approach to Crime Reduction

Dianne Watts, Mayor City of Surrey, British Columbia and Darryl Plecas PhD, MLA Abbotsford South.

Surrey B.C.’s comprehensive approach to reducing crime integrates government and community stakeholders to develop multi-faceted, pre-emptive, and sustainable cost-conscience solutions. Above all, the approach highlights the importance of being attentive to root crime causes, legal issues, and criminal justice system hurdles as major challenges in moving forward.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

What Works with High Risk Youth

a) Evaluation of PLEA Youth Justice Programs for Youth with Substance Use Challenges. Maya Peled & Annie Smith, McCreary Centre Society and Tim Agg, PLEA Community Services. 

A three-agency partnership evaluated a program for substance-abusing youth in trouble with the law. Youth demonstrated significant decreases in risk behaviours by discharge, and many of these improvements were maintained six months later. Certain factors at discharge predicted healthier outcomes post-discharge. The importance of such evaluations in lean economic times will be addressed.

b) Partnered Service Delivery for Mental Health and Addictions Treatment: What Works with Young Offenders? Ryan Anderson, Edmonton John Howard Society, Philip Naude, Alberta Health Services and Alanna Manchak, Edmonton John Howard Society.

The Bridges program partners with various agencies to address the mental health and addictions needs of youthful offenders. Based on evidence-based theories, the program uses cognitive-behavioural and motivational-interviewing techniques in a community corrections setting. Speakers will address successes, challenges and economic benefits of this approach.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

The Real Number of Wrongful Convictions and Presumptive Innocence

Myles Frederick McLellan, University of Ottawa and Tamara Levy, UBC Innocence Project.

Based on a narrow definition of innocence, it has been estimated that upward of one half to one percent of incarcerated offenders have been wrongfully convicted. This paper considers a broader, but potentially more realistic definition of innocence, and argues that the presumption of innocence is more than a procedural due-process right.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Past challenges and future opportunities within Aboriginal Initiatives

Kelly Ann Speck, National Parole Board (retired), Brian Lang, Correctional Service of Canada and Johnny Mattice, Vancouver.

The presentation will examine the challenges of Aboriginal people in the federal correctional system from intake through parole. Speakers will consider social history and culture as a means of better understanding the offenders’ background, and discuss strategies to improve success. The perspective of a current parolee will inform the discussion.

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What is the business of Corrections?

Criminal Justice Sanction; Public Welfare for the Indigent and Homeless; Economic Development for Rural Communities?

George M. Keiser, Keiser and Associates, LLC.

This presentation explores the changing role of correctional institutions from 1980 to present in the US.  In part, communities have gone from rejecting institutions “in my back yard” to fighting to gain and retain the economic stimulus provided by prisons.  This shift is not commonly acknowledged or challenged in policy debates.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Bad Decisions – A Result of Faulty Information about Criminal Justice.

Doug Heckbert, KAS Corporation Ltd.  

It is important that criminal justice professionals provide the public with timely and accurate information about criminal justice laws, procedures and programs or poorly considered decisions can result.  Certain audiences would benefit most from having accurate information. The speaker will discuss specific strategies that participants could employ in their own communities.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Stop the Violence BC: A case study of grassroots responses to organized crime, gang  violence, and health concerns related to cannabis prohibition in British Columbia

Michaela Montaner, Emily Anne Paul, Dan Werb and Evan Wood, MD, Urban Health Research Initiative and Communications.  

As law enforcement approaches alone seem to have little impact on cannabis availability, the Stop the Violence BC Coalition launched a highly successful public education campaign focused on the link between cannabis prohibition and gang violence. This presentation will review some of the demonstrable impacts of this innovative multi-stakeholder model and suggest ways the model can be implemented elsewhere.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Is Big Really Bad?

Melody Kotyk, Alberta Correctional Services Division and Jason Said, ONPA Architects Edmonton

Many analysts accept that large prisons are less expensive to build and operate than a group of small prisons with the same aggregate capacity. The argument against such projects is often that they are less humane and may facilitate prison violence and disruption. The speakers will consider which alternative makes most sense in the Canadian context.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Growth in the Prison Population

a) Bailing Out: Bail and the Use of Remand in Canada. Nicole Marie Myers, University of Toronto. 

This session examines the growth in remand populations. The data suggest that while remand is often justified on the grounds of ‘public safety’, it is questionable whether holding more accused in remand has any measurable impact on public safety. Possibilities for change in the way bail is administered will be considered.

b) Overcrowding. Catherine Latimer, John Howard Society of Canada.

Although crime rates are declining, inmate populations in federal and provincial institutions are increasing. Such overcrowding has the potential to increase institutional violence and to reduce access to, and effectiveness of, rehabilitative programs and services. The speaker will argue that there are proven, and much less costly, resolutions short of building more jails.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Developing a Comprehensive Strategy to Address Youth Gangs: A Shift in Thinking and Approach

Laura Dunbar, University of Ottawa.

The speaker will argue that youth gang involvement reflects inadequate problem-solving behaviours rather than negative personal attributes of gang members. This perspective suggests that focusing on social capital development and opportunity structures that provide youth with a ‘sense of hope’ is needed. A conceptual model for dealing with gangs from this perspective will be described.

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Cross-Border Economic Crimes in China and Countermeasures

Huijuan Xue PhD, Jiangxi Police Institute.  

Cross-border crime has become a significant problem in China, leading to efforts to collaborate with neighbors (Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan). However, different legislation, data collection and communication across jurisdictions present challenges. The speaker will suggest measure to improve such collaborative efforts.

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Preserving the Rule of Law: An International Perspective

David Daubney, Penal Reform International, Jeff Christian, Raoul Wallenberg Institute for Humanitarian Law and Yvon Dandurand, University of the Fraser Valley.

This workshop will focus on three international NGO’s, based in London, Lund Sweden and Vancouver. All work to champion the rule of law, human rights and good governance in Africa. The work of these agencies, their successes and challenges will be reviewed.

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Models to Improve Police Performance

a) A Model for Improving the Strategic Measurement and Management of Policing: The Police Organizational Performance Index (POPI). Terry G. Coleman, University of Regina. 

The present study sought to establish a model for measuring and managing police organisational performance that would focus on efficiency and actual outcomes. A comprehensive survey identified seven factors considered essential to evaluate police services. The resulting strategy breaks new ground in developing a strategic model that meets accountability expectations of the public.

b) Analyzing an Offenders Journey to Crime using a Criminal Movement Model.  Andre Norton, Trinidad and Tobago Police Service and Karen Lancaster Ellis, University of the West Indies.  

The speakers will describe a model to predict where crime is likely to occur in relation to the offender’s home and available roadways. Results suggest offenders commit crimes in predictable areas. An analysis of how travel patterns in various neighborhoods contribute to crime in those neighborhoods will be discussed.

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Providing Supportive Housing for Challenging Individuals

a) Supporting High Risk/High Needs Women from a Residential Perspective.  Gemma Napoli, Deborah Riddle and Sarah Davis, Elizabeth Fry Society of Peel-Halton.

This session will consider best practice models to support high risk/high needs women (mental health, violent and sexual offences, substance abuse, etc.) from a residential perspective. A variety of specific local and national efforts will be considered in terms of lessons learned.

b) THRP: Transitional Housing Rehabilitation Program in London, Ontario – Success for our Community. Heather Callender, St. Leonard’s Community Services, London and Allan Tetzlaff, Regional Mental Health, St. Thomas.  

The Transitional Rehabilitative Housing Program (TRHP) provides transitional accommodation and support to people referred from secure forensic hospital facilities. A “recovery” orientation provides psychological and social services to promote community reintegration at a reduced cost per diem.

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Effective Approaches with Drug Offenders

a) Methadone – More Cost Effective than Crime.  Timothy Christie, Horizon Health Network and Julie Digwell, AIDS St. John.  

This session will report on the prevalence of illicit opioid/cocaine use, retention rates and the incidence of crime among people enrolled in a Low-Threshold/High-Tolerance (LTHT) methadone maintenance treatment which focuses on medical maintenance. Results suggest increases in abstinence and reductions in crime at fairly low cost.

b) Impaired Judgment: Assessing the Appropriateness of Drug Treatment Courts as a Response to Drug Use in Canada.  Tara Lyons, BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, Sandra Ka Hon Chu and Richard Elliott, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network.  

This presentation examines the effectiveness of Canadian drug treatment courts in terms of cost, reduced drug use and recidivism. The study found inconclusive evidence of effectiveness, inadequate assessment of the needs of the target populations, and possible encroachment on the drug treatment sphere. Suggestions to improve the operation of drug courts will be offered.

↑ Back to Congress Agenda

Effective Interventions for Youth at Risk

a) Incarcerated children in care: Risk profiles and opportunities for intervention.  Lauren Freedman and Raymond R. Corrado PhD, Simon Fraser University.  

It is not clear whether youth in care are at increased risk of engaging in antisocial behaviors when compared to other serious and violent young offenders. This study compares the risk profiles of incarcerated children in care to those never placed in care and considers opportunities for intervention that are unique to the care system.

b) Deterrence and denunciation: the unforeseen consequences when discretion becomes obligation.  Darrell Fox, London Metropolitan University and Elaine Arnull PhD, Buckinghamshire New University.  

The speakers will consider youth justice legislation in Canada and Britain. Drawing on unintended negative consequences from the British experience, possible effects of amendments to the Canadian Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) Bill C10, Part 4, and the reduction of discretionary policing and court processes will be considered.

c) Supporting Girls Through the Justice System – a 25 year Retrospective.  Jody Horzelenberg, Lisa Zanon and Deborah Riddle, Elizabeth Fry Society of Peel-Halton.

The Elizabeth Fry Society in Halton, Ont has provided services to young women for 25 years. They have helped develop a gender-specific risk/need/strength assessment tool to evaluate the presenting strengths and problems of each girl and her family in order to plan effective interventions. Best practices and challenges will be considered.

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Effective Intervention with Gang involved offenders: 15 Years of Trade Secrets

Hugo Foss PhD, Correctional Service of Canada.  

This presentation will focus criminal gangs, particularly incarcerated gang members, and will consider why/how they initiate and maintain their “membership” in gangs, as well as the assessment and management of risk for recidivism. Methods of engaging gang members in the process of change and the process involved in having gang members “disaffiliate” will be addressed.

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Public Policy, Attitudes and Real Life Impacts (Bilingual Session)

a) The Impact of Criminal Records in Light of the Changes Brought About by C-10.  David Henry, ASRSQ.

According to the RCMP, more than 4 million Canadians have a criminal record. Such a record can significantly impact the person’s ability to obtain employment, housing, or insurance. This situation will likely be exacerbated by Bill C-10 which delays or prohibits pardons. The implications for successful reintegration will be considered.

b) Talking about Capital Punishment: Its Discourse in the Context of ‘Shifting the Political Centre to the Right’.  Mark Davidson PhD, Wilfrid Laurier University. 

There appears to be renewed interest in capital punishment among some federal leaders. The discussion of capital punishment is likely to alter the nature of justice policy analysis to legitimize increased penal severity, reduce rehabilitative approaches, and demonize offenders. The implications of this discourse for multiple policy areas beyond criminal justice will be considered.

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Accessing the Law

a) Accessing the Law: Evaluating Winnipeg’s Legal Help Centre.  Michael Weinrath PhD,  Josh Watts, Erika Day and Garrett Lecoq, University of Winnipeg. 

The Winnipeg Legal Help Centre provides legal assistance to individuals who do not qualify for legal aid and low income persons without any viable alternatives. Preliminary evaluation indicates high satisfaction by the Centre’s targeted population, and evidence of success in self-representation.  Implications for policy and programming will be discussed.

b) Access to Justice. John Conroy QC, John Conroy & Company and Melina Buckley QC, Chair, Canadian Bar Association’s Envisioning Equal Justice Initiative. 

Chief Justice McLachlin has spoken frequently of her belief that access to justice has become too costly for Canadians of ordinary means. The speakers here will discuss the issue of access to justice on both a local and national scale, identifying potential solutions to this continuing challenge.

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Domestic Violence: Working Together to Reduce the Social Cost

Jacinta Lawton, BC Public Service, Adi Glouberman, Criminal Defence Attorney, Elizabeth Miller, Vancouver Police Department, and Tania Joseph, Vancouver Aboriginal Child & Family Services Society.  

The Vancouver Domestic Violence Unit Pilot Project has been in operation for a year. This session will focus on how various partners (Crown and Defense Counsel, Police and Child Protection) work together to assist families throughout the process of family violence cases in order to reduce social and emotional costs while assuring family safety.

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Research and Program Cost Effectiveness: Washington State and British Columbia Perspectives

Steve Aos, Washington State Institute for Public Policy and Carmen Gress PhD, BC Corrections.  

Steve Aos will expand on his plenary presentation by describing the analytical process used to identify effective criminal justice programs that reduce recidivism, their return on investment, and how this information is used by legislators. Dr. Gress will explore challenges in evaluating programs related to defining and measuring recidivism.

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Prison Design Trends

Speakers to be confirmed.

This session will address the question: Are prison designs evidence based or should they be? Some suggest that prison designs are based solely on what has been done before without reference to whether the design has or will achieve its purpose. The need for a system to relate prison operations to design will be considered.


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The Prison Yoga Project: From Inside Out

Chantele Theroux, Service Alberta, Kirk Bloodsworth, Maryland Citizens against State Executions and James Fox, San Quentin Prison Yoga Project.

The Prison Yoga Project at San Quentin prison provides a cost-effective method of improving prisoner health and behavior by instilling self-control and fostering accountability. Based on cost and research analyses, this workshop will argue for its inclusion in the Canadian context.  Participants will be invited to experience a typical (condensed) yoga class as would be provided in prison.

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Deaths in Custody

Kim Pate, Elizabeth Fry Societies of Canada and Howard Sapers, Correctional Investigator of Canada.  

Abstract not available.

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Social Impact Bonds

David Butler, MDRC New York City, Katie Appel Duda, Bloomberg Foundation, Gordon Hogg, MLA Surrey-White Rock, and Jane Newman, Social Finance UK. 

Social Impact Bonds are financed through the market like other investment bonds, but pay interest rates (with government funding) relative to the degree of success demonstrated by the funded program. The panel will discuss the British and American experience with this funding scheme and will consider the applicability for the Canadian situation.

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Metro Vancouver Policing

Robert Gordon PhD, Simon Fraser University, Kash Heed, former West Vancouver Police Department, Douglas MacKay-Dunn, Municipal Councillor, District of North Vancouver and Lois Jackson, Mayor, District Municipality of Delta, BC. 

The panel will review and discuss the issues and options associated with a restructuring of policing in Metro Vancouver in light of the recommendations of the Report of the Missing Women’s Inquiry and other developments.

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Plenary Session:

The Pickton Affair: Lessons for the Canadian Justice System.

Hon. Wally Oppal QC, Boughton Law Corporation

Following the conviction of Robert Pickton on multiple counts of murder, Mr. Oppal led the Missing Women’s Commission of Inquiry to investigate the circumstances under which Pickton was able to murder at least six and possibly up to 26 women over time. In this Plenary, Mr. Oppal will address the Pickton affair and what lessons it contains for the Canada’s justice system.

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