Blog Archives

Inmate who took part in riot at notorious Iqaluit jail says conditions making inmates worse

baffin-correctional-centre‘I just flipped out … sooner or later someone [else is] gonna flip out too,’ says Steven Akittirq

By Pauline Pemik, Walter Strong, CBC News, October 5, 2017

“My name is Steven Akittirq and I’ve been incarcerated since June 2014.”

On Monday, Steven Akittirq, 27, pleaded guilty in an Iqaluit courtroom to second-degree murder in the June 9, 2014, death of Glenna Attagutalukutuk, a teenage girl in Igloolik, Nunavut. A four-day sentencing hearing is scheduled to be held in the community starting on Jan. 30. Read the rest of this entry

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Gaps between Indigenous and non-Indigenous inmates growing, latest statistics show

prison cellsMinisters of justice and public safety say the government is not turning a ‘blind eye’ to the issue

By Alison Crawford, CBC News, September 15, 2017

There are more Indigenous offenders in Canada’s prisons and they serve more time before being released on parole than other prisoners, according to fresh statistics from the federal Department of Public Safety. Read the rest of this entry

Australia orders inquiry after teenage prisoners teargassed, stripped naked

Australia aboriginal youth abused

An aboriginal youth is shackled to a chair and hooded in this still from a video. Photo: CBC News.

Thomson Reuters July 27, 2016

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Tuesday ordered an inquiry into the treatment of children in detention after the airing of video showing prison guards teargassing teenage inmates and strapping a half-naked, hooded-boy to a chair.

Footage of the abuse of six Aboriginal boys in a juvenile detention centre sparked renewed criticism of Australia’s treatment of Aboriginal people, or Aborigines, and their high imprisonment rate. Read the rest of this entry

Video of alleged abuse of Aboriginal teens at Australian prison prompts investigation

Prison watchdog says more than a quarter of federal inmates are aboriginal people

prison cells 1Howard Sapers, Canada’s correctional investigator, says efforts to curb high numbers not working

CBC News Jan 14, 2016

For the first time, more than a quarter of inmates in Canadian prisons are aboriginal people.

“The most current figure we have is quite shocking,” said Correctional Investigator of Canada Howard Sapers, the country’s prison ombudsman.

“In federal corrections, 25.4 per cent of the incarcerated population are now of aboriginal ancestry.” Read the rest of this entry

Aboriginal inmates less likely to get early release from prison

Prison cells‘Releasing someone at the end of their sentence does not make a safe community,’ John Howard spokeswoman says

By Kate Kyle, CBC News, June 25, 2015

Aboriginal prisoners are overrepresented in Canada’s federal prisons and waiting longer for parole, according to new numbers from the Public Safety Ministry, which is responsible for corrections.

Federal offenders are first eligible for parole after serving one-third of their sentences, but their release isn’t guaranteed. Read the rest of this entry

Federal offenders find redemption at B.C.’s Aghelh Nebun Camp

Aghelh Nebun Camp.

Aghelh Nebun Camp.

Aghelh Nebun Camp incorporates traditional First Nation cultural practices

By Daybreak North, CBC News, June 25, 2015

A wilderness camp east of Prince George, B.C., is offering incarcerated men on conditional release a way to connect with their spiritual, cultural and emotional side as they serve out their sentences.

Aghelh Nebun Camp allows up to 19 men to live there under supervision of Correctional Service Canada. The program incorporates traditional First Nation culture, and allows residents to take part in talking circles and drum groups as well as everyday work and recreational activities. Read the rest of this entry

Former Regina jail inmates decry 21-hour lockup

David Dustyhorn says he didn't see the sun 'for like 3½ years.' (Radio-Canada/CBC)

David Dustyhorn says he didn’t see the sun ‘for like 3½ years.’ (Radio-Canada/CBC)

Extra security needed for those with gang affiliations, behavioural problems, province says

CBC News, June 23, 2015

Two former prisoners of the Regina Correctional Centre say they were confined to their cell 21 hours a day for months and even years, with very little rehabilitation, before their cases went to trial.

One of the ex-prisoners is Forrest Pelletier, whom Radio-Canada recently spoke with as he played with his five children at a park.

While waiting for his trial at the Regina jail earlier this year, Pelletier was confined 21 hours a day to his cell — a space the size of a closet.  Read the rest of this entry