Monthly Archives: March 2014

April 2014 Vol 6 (1) Edition

A word from your new editors…

Given the volume of material and time spent in preparation, we have come to expect from BCCJA Newsletter editors Tim Stiles and Art Gordon, it was with great trepidation that Hank Mathias and myself (Cindy Ramos) agreed to take on this new adventure. While Tim and Art have been exceptionally good tutors, exhibiting an abundance of patience with our many questions, as Newsletter novices we would ask for your patience and understanding in this, our first foray into the Newsletter arena. Below you will find a selection of the articles, stories and research that we found interesting and topical over the last few months. We have not included everything (most certainly not everything that Tim and Art would have included!) but hopefully you’ll find something useful for your work, something worthy to share with colleagues, something worthy to debate and perhaps even something worthy of a chuckle. Indeed there are a few inclusions that made the cut simply because they were too outrageous not to share.

You will notice that we have kept the same topic areas as have traditionally been used and we have included a couple of new ones as well. Recommendations are welcome but mostly we ask your patience as we navigate our way through.

News from the BCCJA Board

As a result of the success of the 2013 Congress, the association now has the funds necessary to carry on with its mission. These funds will be dedicated to developing the Association”s capacity to be active throughout the province, to ensure it continues to be an active participant in the discussion and development of criminal and social justice issues,and to fund public seminars and education. Over the next several months the BCCJA board will be working on the plans for moving ahead and we welcome any recommendations/suggestions from our membership. Contact us at info@bccja.com

We would also like to invite you to the BCCJA Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at the JIBC, New Westminster.

Time of the meeting TBA on the BCCJA website: www.bccja.com

Newsletter Summary of Contents

Criminal Justice Policy (9 items) Mental Health (4 items)
Criminal Justice System (5 items) Social Capital (1 item)
The Law and Courts (17 items) International News (7 items)
Law Enforcement (12 items) Women and the Criminal Justice System (1 item)
Children and Youth (7 items) Related Interest (6 items)
Corrections and Community (13 items) National Security (2 Items)
Criminal Behaviour (2 items) Did You Know?
Victims of Crime (4 items) Important Sources and Resources
Sexual Offenders (14 items)

 

Upcoming Events

Children & youth mental health conference, May 2 & 3
Today’s Children & Youth, Tomorrow’s Families
2014 Youth and Family Consensus Conference
Friday & Saturday, May 2 & 3, 2014
Coast Plaza Hotel & Suites, Vancouver, BC
Early-bird registration deadline: March 17, 2014
Register online
Download the program
Find more information at http://interprofessional.ubc.ca/2014ConsensusConference/default.asp

The Science of Kindness

Thursday, Friday, Saturday May 8-10, 2014
Old Auditorium, UBC Point Grey, Vancouver, BC
More Information

International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law

Crime and Punishment – Back to the Future for Sentencing and Corrections Reform
June 22 – 26, 2014
Vancouver, BC, Canada  More Information

109th Annual Conference of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police from August 24th to 27th, 2014.

The Victoria Police Department and the Canadian Forces Military Police Group are proud to be co-hosting. The theme of the conference is “Leadership Through Crisis.” Delegates will explore how to manage all facets of organizational crises, including personnel considerations, communications challenges, and financial limitations. More Information

BREAKING NEWS
In a major victory for prisoners’ rights, the Supreme Court of Canada stressed that the nearly 1,000-year-old tradition of habeas corpus – the right to go before a judge to argue against illegal detention – means that prisoners deserve a prompt and thorough court hearing.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/ruling-on-inmates-transfer-a-victory-for-prisoners-rights/article17692472/#dashboard/follows/

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Criminal Justice Policy

Cost of violent crimes topped $12 billion in 2009: Justice Canada study

Justice Canada has examined five different violent crimes in 2009 in this latest study on the cost of violence. The study excluded spousal violence, already done in a separate study ($7.4 billion) but included every case of assault, criminal harassment, homicide, robbery, and sexual assault and other sexual offences from 2009  Read More

Access to justice: Help coming for people headed to Canada’s civil and family courts 

Supreme Court of Canada Justice Thomas Cromwell who chaired a comprehensive report on how to improve justice sees the present justice system as complicated and inefficient, particularly around civil and family law.  The first solution, he says, is better and readily understandable information to the public.  Several jurisdictions have begun on-line forums

CFJC/FCJC Report Source

No call for national inquiry in MP’s report on Aboriginal women

The Parliamentary Special Committee on Violence against Aboriginal Women has not recommended an inquiry, disappointing many across the country.  Entitled Invisible Women: A Call to Action, the  tables report 16 recommendations including a public awareness campaign and a DNA data bank for missing persons.  Critics say the report endorses status quo and does nothing to prevent more violence. In protest, activists are engaging in. Report  Critics    blockades

Access to social workers could keep veterans out of criminal justice system, University of Missouri researchers find.

Approximately one in six veterans struggles with substance abuse, and 20 percent show signs of mental health issues or cognitive impairments, previous research has shown. These risk factors, combined with a lack of resources, could be contributing to an increase of veterans entering the criminal justice system, according to a report by the Center for  Mental Health Services. Read More

Texas Governor “Shut Prisons Down.  Save That Money”

“Only a nation that’s rich and stupid would continue to pour billions into a system that leaves prisoners unreformed, victims ignored and communities still living in fear of crime.”

Texas Governor Rick Perry spoke at length about unnecessarily punitive mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines, as well as the wisdom of drug courts that divert addicts out of the penal system and into treatment. Read More

Getting Rich By Locking Up Grandpa

ACLU reports rather than letting one of the company’s prisons in Kentucky sit empty, a CCA ally in Kentucky’s legislature has announced plans to re-fill it by incarcerating the old and infirm. Read More

Death penalty in U.S. spurs Wild West scramble for drugs

Growing numbers of US states are ending capital punishment altogether. Others are delaying executions until they have a better understanding of what chemicals work best. And the media report blow-by-blow details of prisoners gasping, snorting or crying out during improvised lethal injection, taking seemingly forever to die. Read More

Professor shares history of capital punishment

The history of death penalty in the United States hinged on one enigmatic justice, said Evan Mandery, chair of the Department of Criminal Justice at John Jay College.

Mandery told the story of capital punishment in the Supreme Court in a speech at the Eagleton Institute of Politics  Read More

Conservatives Evolving on Criminal Justice and the Death Penalty

Conservatives in the United States are increasingly becoming bridge builders by supporting criminal justice reforms that would have been improbable a generation ago. Read More

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Criminal Justice System

Restorative justice helps victims, cuts crime

A major new international study has backed pioneering work by The Australian National University (ANU) into restorative justice, finding criminals are less likely to re-offend after meeting their victims face to face. Story and Report Access

Cost of violent crimes topped $12 billion in 2009: Justice Canada study

Justice Canada has examined five different violent crimes in 2009 in this latest study on the cost of violence. The study excluded spousal violence, already done in a separate study ($7.4 billion) but included every case of assault, criminal harassment, homicide, robbery, and sexual assault and other sexual offences from 2009  Read More

Restorative Justice and the Rule of Law: Rethinking Due Process through a Relational Theory of Rights 

Dalhousie University research that asserts  “a relational understanding of the role and rule of law in relation to restorative justice promotes relationships of equality based on mutual concern, respect and dignity in ways that can enhance justice and social solidarity in a deliberative democracy.”  Report Abstract

Understanding Systemic Discrimination in Our Criminal Justice System – Part 1

On March 3, 2014 the Standing Senate Committee on Human Rights met to discuss the issue of visible minority youth and the criminal justice system.  Senator Mobina Jaffer discusses the work of the Senate Committee to date.   Read More

Crime Against Persons with Disabilities, 2009-2012 Statistical Tables Released by US Bureau of Statistics

Disabilities are classified according to six limitations: hearing, vision, cognitive, ambulatory, self-care, and independent living.   Story Link Tables

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Law and Courts

While we have tried to emphasize a sampling of the decisions that impact Canadian jurisprudence, we have also included entries arising from US decisions not only to provoke discussion but also to consider what, if any, impact they will have on Canadian initiatives.

Downtown Community Court sees greater drop in repeat offenders than traditional courts, report finds.

Canada’s first court to link repeat offenders to social programs such as health and housing has met its goal of cutting crime, says an evaluation into the pilot project in Vancouver. Read More    Evaluation Report

The custom justice of ‘problem-solving courts’

A new kind of court is reshaping the American legal system seemingly with little oversight Read More

Push for consecutive mandatory minimum sentences may run afoul of Criminal Code

Consecutive sentences are sentences for multiple convictions that follow each other rather than merge with each other. Besides a declared intent to increase the minimum and maximum under the mandatory sentences, the federal government is now speculating about making those mandatory sentences consecutive. Read More

Supreme Court of Canada Decision

Does Legalized Prostitution Increase Human Trafficking?

Discussion of recent research on the legalization of prostitution and human trafficking. Article contains references to the full study completed by the US Department of Justice as well as references a second study done in conjunction with the London School of Economics. Are there arguments here which inform the Canadian experience given the Supreme Court decision concerning prostitution ?     Read More    US Study   Attorney General v. Bedford

The complainant agreed to sexual activity with her partner, H, insisting that he use a condom in order to prevent conception.  Unknown to her, H had poked holes in the condom and the complainant became pregnant.  H was charged with aggravated sexual assault. R v Hutchison

The Supreme Court of Canada has recently handed down a ruling limiting the use of expert opinion evidence.  The full decision can be accessed here. R v. Sekhon

Gladue reports now available to Island First Nations people

First Nations Islanders who find themselves in the court system now have a new service available to them.  Read More

B.C. appeal court dismisses challenge against tough drunk-driving laws.

In a unanimous three-judge decision, the British Columbia Appeal Court has refused to water down the province’s tough drunk-driving laws that allow for heavy fines, penalties and immediate roadside suspensions.

CBA
2013 CBA Legal Conference in Saskatoon the Access to Justice Committee released “Reaching Equal Justice: An Invitation to Envision and Act.” Read More Original Report Related 2013 CBA Report

Washington State Lawmakers say human traffickers must register as sex offenders

Washington would become the first state to require human traffickers to register as sex offenders, according to the prime sponsor of a bill that won unanimous approval Wednesday in the state Senate. Read More Bill 1791

The state Senate also unanimously passed a bill — already approved in the House — that would give victims of trafficking a better chance of finding work or housing. The bill would allow those victims to petition a judge to clear their records of prostitution-related convictions. Bill 1292

Court dress code

Inside Philadelphia’s Criminal Justice Center, they’ve become as ubiquitous as the sidewalk memorials of flowers and stuffed toys for people killed in shootings and auto accidents. They are T-shirts, usually emblazoned with the photo of a crime victim and slogans urging remembrance of or “justice for.”  Read More

A Texas Judge Tells Private Prison Corporation It’s A Government Agency As Far As Public Information Requests Are Concerned

Prison Legal News has been battling with the largest private prison corporation in the US, Corrections Corporation of America, over the control of records requested through a Texas Public Information Act request. Read More

Eric Holder’s Civil Rights Resurgence.

US Attorney General looks to restore inmate right to vote.  Read More

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Law Enforcement

B.C.’s director of police services to get new powers on cold cases.

The BC director of police services, Clayton Pecknold, will be given new powers to assign external police investigators to review cases that are stalled or left to go cold within other police departments. This authority was one of the recommendations made by Missing Women Commissioner, Wally Oppal.  News Story Full Report 

The Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police Executive passes motion to revise police record check guidelines

The increased frequency of the request for records check has made vulnerable people a target. This resolution by the Ontario Chiefs of Police, at the urging of the Canadian Civil Liberties, now calls for a policy to “institute a presumption against the release of non-conviction records on all levels of police checks.”  Read More

No room for complacency in gender equality,

There is no room for complacency in efforts to ensure more women obtain top roles in public life, a leading US diplomat has told a gathering of senior female police officers in Belfast. Read More

The top five digital breakthroughs for policing – and five yet to come

From the motor car to mobile DNA, police work has been transformed by technology. Read More

Identifiable Images of Bystanders Extracted from Corneal Reflections

Study looks at the possibility of zooming in on high-resolution face photographs, to determine if  images of unseen perpetrators  could potentially be recovered from reflections in the victim’s eyes.  Report

Evaluating Children with Fractures for Child Physical Abuse

This article explores recent advances in distinguishing  fractures caused by abuse from those with a medical aetiology. Report

Crime Scene Behaviours Indicate Risk-Relevant Propensities of Child Molesters

This research article describes a large scale study confirming the relevance of crime scene analysis in risk assessments of those who sexually offend against children. Paper

Rape-Kit Backlog Leaves Victims in Fear

Countless rape kits are untested leaving victims in fear. News Story

Kiwi Customs Fight High Tech Battle Against Child Sex Abuse Images.

Advances in technology continue to make it difficult to detect child pornography images by customs officials. More Here

APA Report on Gun Violence Identifies Precursors and Promising Solutions

Behaviourally based threat assessment identified as most effective preventative strategy. Read More Full Report

Homeland Security Agents Tackle Growing Trend of Child Sex Tourism by Webcam

Security Agents now trying to combat the proliferation of sexual offending directed and transmitted via webcam. Read More

Armed and dangerous

No-knock raids, assault weapons and armoured cars: America’s police use paramilitary tactics too often Read More

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Children & Youth

PHOENIX SINCLAIR INQUIRY REPORT RELEASED

The Government of Manitoba acknowledges the failure of the child welfare system to protect Phoenix Sinclair and commits to immediately act on the recommendations of the Hughes inquiry. Hughes Report

Ontario Youth Advocate Feathers of Hope

The 127 page report attempts to focus on a national strategy for Aboriginal youth to address the needs of those living on reserves in Northern Ontario. Started in 2012, the research following visits to remote areas was compiled by five youth amplifiers and recently published. The plan identifies the problems and proposes an action plan for resolution. Summary Report

Better job needed in transitioning youth out of foster care: Canadian report.

Critics argue that Canada needs to do a better job transitioning youth out of foster care and into independence.  The report was completed by the Canadian Homelessness Research Network.   News Story  Full Report

Measuring Anti-social Values and Attitudes in Justice-Involved Male Youth

This research article addresses the validity and reliability of antisocial attitudes as a risk indicator in youth.  Abstract

Kids from juvenile justice system 7 times more likely to commit criminal acts

A new study shows that juvenile delinquents sentenced to either a juvenile retreat, probation or unsupervised community service were seven times more likely to commit criminal acts as adults than youngsters from the control group who managed to avoid the juvenile justice system.  Read More

Forum allows teens in custody to share their stories with students

The teenagers are members of the Pennsylvania State Juvenile Justice Commission Speakers Bureau, a program within the commission’s Restorative Justice Unit. Last year, 15 speakers bureau forums were held around the state, reaching 715 students and 61 faculty. Read More

Complete Analysis of Youth Services Funding in Obama’s 2015 Budget

President Barack Obama submitted his budget for fiscal year 2015 , including billions of dollars in funding for youth services related to child welfare, juvenile justice, job training and education. Read More Proposed Spending Charted

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Corrections and Community

Deaths in solitary confinement prompt B.C. coroner’s inquest and calls for reform – This is the first in a three-part series running in the Vancouver Georgia Straight.

Three inmates held in segregation at a prison north of Chilliwack died over an eight month period in 2012-13. The B.C. Coroners Service is holding an inquest, and advocates for prisoners are calling for reforms.  Part 1 Link

Part 2: Mentally ill inmates increasingly held in solitary confinement at Canadian prisons

It’s estimated that over a third of inmates entering Canadian prisons have some sort of mental health condition, and that a disproportionate number of those people are held in isolation.  Part 2 Link

Part 3: Correctional Service of Canada ignores repeated calls for reform on solitary confinement

Stakeholders outside and inside the Canadian penal system maintain that there are effective and cost-efficient alternatives to solitary confinement. Part 3 Link

Doctors call for healthcare reforms in prisons.

In a new study, public health experts, led by Brown University, say more should be done to protect and improve the health of prison populations.  The paper, published in the  the journal Health Affairs, argues that too many prisoners return to their communities with debilitating diseases — diseases that burden the economy and exacerbate public healthcare resources. Brown University Link Study Abstract Brookings Institute

Psychosocial Characteristics and Social Networks of Suicidal Prisoners: Towards a Model of Suicidal Behaviour in Detention

Study finds a range of  psychosocial factors including but not limited to: higher levels of depression, hopelessness, impulsivity, and aggression, and lower levels of self-esteem and social support are associated with near lethal self-harm in prisoners.

Abstract and Paper

Recidivism and Rehabilitation of Criminal Offenders: A Carrot and Stick Evolutionary Game

Simulation study results suggest the most successful strategy in reducing crime is to optimally allocate resources immediately upon release so that after being punished, criminals experience impactful intervention programs. Report

At Hearing on Solitary Confinement in California Prisons, Advocates Challenge ‘Reforms’

Prison advocates challenge reforms in California prisons. Read More

Ohio corrections department reports record low number of prisoners returning after release

Fewer ex-inmates are going back to prison, the state attributing the drop to community programs that work with newly released offenders and new prison  units that prepare people for life outside bars.  Story Link Research Data

FBI investigates Idaho prison run by private corporation

The FBI has launched an investigation into the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) over the way it runs an Idaho prison that has such a reputation for violence that inmates dub it “Gladiator School.”  Story Link Related Story

Private Prison Giant CCA Weighs in on Solitary Confinement

Presumably spurred by the growing attention to solitary confinement, Corrections Corporation of America has produced a promotional piece on how it is “strategically serving” those it places in solitary. Read More

Alabama prison problems

Gov. Robert Bentley this week called for Alabama to address what are now the most overcrowded prisons in the United States.  Read More

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Criminal Behaviour

Life in Limbo: An Examination of Parole Release for Prisoners –  Serving Life Sentences with the Possibility of Parole in California

This longitudinal study looks at the recidivism rate in lifers paroled after 1995 in California. The study records a re-incarceration rate for new felonies of less than 1%, based on 860 cases studied only 5 returned to custody.  2011 Stanford  Study

Justice, Crime, and Deviance 2013: Challenging Norms and Critiquing Policy

The first annual “Justice, Crime and Deviance: Regional Graduate Research and Networking Conference”  held on Saturday April 20th , 2013 at Wilfrid Laurier University (WLU) in Brantford, Ontario.  Report

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Victims of Crime

Victim services in Canada, 2011/2012

In this latest statistical report, police services identified some 367,000 victims of violent crime in Canada. The vast majority of services provided were in protection and crisis. Report

UK launches 500,000 fund for Male Victims of Sexual Abuse

New initiative aimed at male survivors of sexual abuse.Read More

Galway leading the way in child sexual assault treatment.

Article documents  improved services for child sexual assault victims.Read More

Think Your Date’s a Sex Offender? There’s an App for That!

New app uses facial recognition software to identify sexual offenders.  Read More

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Sexual Offenders

1 in 14 Women Worldwide Has Been Sexually Assaulted: Study

News article  highlighting recent research documenting the incidence of non-partner sexual violence. Research article    Read More  Research Article

Child Sexual Abuse: Top 5 Countries with the Highest Rates

United Kingdom and United States of America among top five countries with highest sexual abuse rates of children.  Article has links to a number of related studies and news articles. Article & Links

Canadian Sex-offender program victim of funding cuts

A program aimed at helping high-risk sex offenders not to reoffend faces staffing and program cuts after losing its federal funding.

Circles of Support and Accountability (CoSA), which has 18 projects across Canada, found out last week Correctional Service Canada will no longer fund it after March 31. Story Link

Circles of Support and Accountability: A snapshot  Program to Continue

Inside the Pedophile Brain

Video link to presentation featuring Dr. James Cantor (Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Toronto) and Dr. Thomas Plante (Professor Psychology, Santa Clara University) on pedophilic brain research. Link

Can pedophiles learn not to offend?

News article describing a German initiative , “Don’t Offend” targeting pedophilic offenders. Read More.

Sex Offenders Released from Prison without Treatment

News article highlights a recent report from the UK National Audit Office which found very few sex offenders were receiving treatment.  News Story     Full Report

Sex offender Registration

Over the last few months there were many news articles related to Sex Offender Registries in both Canada and the United States. The differences between the American and Canadian experience is extraordinary. Here is a sampling.

Public Sex Offender Registry coming soon, says Peter McKay.

Federal Government proposes that the names of offenders  who have been convicted of sexual offences involving children no longer be kept private. Read More

Proposed sex-offender registry will not deter crime, criminal lawyer warns

Lawyer argues the proposed changes to the Sex Offender Registry offer false hope of protection but will do little to deter further offending. Read More

Nevada Supreme Court Orders Delay in Enforcement of Sex Offender Registration Law.

A new legal challenge  delays enforcement of stricter sex offender registration regulations in Nevada.   Read More

Proposal Introduced to Close Gap in Sex Offender Laws.

Proposed reporting changes  for registered sex offenders in Illinois. Read More

Sex Predator Commitment Loopholes to be Closed.

Increased reporting changes  waiting to be passed in Florida. Read More

Free N.C. Sex Offender Registry app for mobile devices

Mobile app now allows North Carolinians to access information  on registered sex offenders, “on the go.”   Read More

Think Your Date’s a Sex Offender? There’s an App for That!

New app uses facial recognition  software information to identify sexual offenders. Read More

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Mental Health

B.C. nurses face daily violence from child forensic patients

A CBC News investigation has uncovered a history of violations of occupational health and safety regulations and a disturbing list of injuries to staff at the Maples Adolescent Treatment Centre in Burnaby. Read More

Report of the Ontario Human Rights Commission on police use of force and mental health

The report follows a number of deadly encounters between police and mentally ill persons in Ontario. Included in the areas examined are the use of Tasers, training, policies and procedures, data collection, mobile crisis intervention teams, and provincial use of force guidelines. Read Report Here

Inside a Mental Hospital Called Jail

Article looks at the “criminalization” of mental illness. NYT Commentary

Prediction of General and Violent Recidivism among Mentally Disordered Violent Offenders

This article describes research addressing the utility of the Level of Service/Risk-Need-Responsivity Instrument with mentally disordered offenders. Abstract

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Social Capital

Residents in ‘walkable’ neighbourhoods have higher Levels of trust, community involvement

The study, from Carsey Institute of the University of New Hampshire, says that if you can walk in your neighbourhood, you likely have more community commitment and a higher value on social capital. Neighbourhoods with higher income tend to have higher walkable ratios but walkability is influenced by concerns of safety, access, time, and health, and by physical characteristics such as proximity, scale, and aesthetics. Story Report Access

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International News

Due to the incredible volume of news articles documenting the abuses of women and children worldwide, together with our commitment to social responsibility we have included “International News” as a new category. Here is a selection of the articles we reviewed.

Sexual Abuse, Early Marriage, Forced Recruitment Among Concerns highlighted by UN Child Rights Body.

UN reports  on achievements and challenges relative to child protection. Full concluding comments linked as well.   Report   Comments

Using Rape as an Excuse for Moral Policing in India.

Article details concerns about using rape as a justification for moral policing. Read More

Addiction rising: Pakistani youth, high going on higher.

Pakistan, once largely poppy free, has now become one of the main drug transit states in the world, with 40 per cent of the world’s opium supply moving through the country. The national drug use survey, conducted after ten years, is lined with worrying facts and figures, and insights into the region’s current geopolitical scenario. Read More UN Report

UN Report Condemns Torture, Sexual Abuse of Syrian Children.

Article describes victimization of children in Syria, as documented in a recent UN report. Read More

No Justice for Child Victims of Burundi’s Sex Traffic Rings

Canadian NGO helping child victims  of human trafficking and sexual slavery in Burundi. Read More

Moroccan Parliament to vote on Controversial Rape Prosecution Law

Article details the attempts being made to change a law allowing sexual offenders to avoid prosecution  by marrying their victims.  Read More

Rape as Cure for South African Lesbianism

Article explore the issue of what has become known as “corrective rape”” in South Africa. Read More

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Women and the Criminal Justice System

While constructing this issue of the BCCJA newsletter, we envisioned adding in “Women and the Criminal Justice System” as an additional area of interest. What we found, once we started looking for articles to populate this subject area, was very little. While there are a plethora of articles which speak to the over representation of women as victims, there was very little else. We did however manage to locate the following reference and we commit to finding more for future newsletter editions.

Africa: U.S. Guide Discusses Gender in Criminal Justice System

This article highlights the US Guide which was recently published in an effort to promote effective participation of women in criminal justice systems around the world. The State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs 26-page “Guide to Gender in the Criminal Justice System” is a available.  Article  Guide

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Related Interest

Can she consent to sex after drinking?

Article looks at the issue of “consent” and whether or not it has gone too far on university campuses. Read More

Legal narratives as significant news sources about mental illness and violent crime.

Article explores the link between media descriptions of the mentally ill and the legal narratives from which they are drawn.  Read More

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National Security

Issues relative to national security have not typically been an area of discussion in this forum. While we don’t wish to transform the newsletter into an intelligence document, in the spirit of inclusion, we offer a couple of entries for our National Security professionals, which we found worthy of consideration.

Early detection of the lone wolf: Advancement of counter-terrorism investigations with an absence or abundance of information and intelligence.

Article details the emergence of the “Lone-wolf” style terrorist, who may now represent the greatest threat to national security. Abstract

The policy response to home-grown terrorism: Reconceptualising Prevent and Resilience as collective resistance.

Research study suggests that National counterterrorism policies may be more effective if conceptualized as “collective resistance” to terrorism. Study

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Did You Know?

  • Half of all women in Canada have experienced at least one incident of physical or sexual violence since the age of 16.
  • In any given year, one in five people in Canada experiences a mental health problem or illness, with a cost to the economy of well in excess of $50 billion.1
  • Only one in three people who experience a mental health problem or illness — and as few as one in four children or youth — report that they have sought and received services and treatment
  • Percentage of all criminal defendants in the United States who forgo a trial by pleading guilty: 97
  • Percentage of U.S. convicts exonerated last year who had previously pleaded guilty without a trial: 17


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Important Sources and Resources

The Justice Institute of British Columbia specializes in justice and public safety agency training and education. Its’ library is a premier source of academic and experiential training information. For instance, visit the Library site for a prepared bibliography on a wide range of topics: gangs, bullying, critical incident stress, emergency management, etc.

The Vera Institute of Justice is a research body which we have quoted in the BCCJA newsletter in the past. The Institute has begun a newsletter to help popularize some of its findings.

The National Institute of Corrections‘ excellent website gives access to a wide variety of materials related to criminal behaviour and corrections issues. We found the “Library” tab an excellent start.

Restorative Justice BC has an excellent website as a resource of interest to practitioners, community partners and others with an interest in restorative justice, who are wanting to stay up to date on current issues and practices. As an example, the latest newsletter from Restorative Justice International is available on their web-site.

JusticeBC.ca has been created by the British Columbia government  “… to ensure the right information and services are available for people who become involved with the criminal justice system in B.C.” It’s a good resource for everyone, with information on legal assistance, jury duty, corrections and court services, plus more……

As part of its Domestic Violence Action Plan, the Government of B.C. has developed a new web portal of resources for victims of domestic violence to help them get the support they need. Click here for the website. The following is another site that provides a wealth of information on preventing domestic and sexual violence.

The Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder website  is for justice system professionals and provides important excellent information on such matters as identification, causal factors, legal resources and effective intervention strategies.

Changing Directions, Changing Lives: A Mental Health Strategy for Canada was launched on May 12, 2012 by the Mental Health Commission of Canada. The Commission exists to promote mental health in Canada, and works with stakeholders to change the attitudes of Canadians toward mental health problems, and to improve services and support. Check their web-site for a series of audio-visual clips on the Strategy, and also for important information regarding a number of key initiatives.

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