Presumption of innocence is often a myth

March 16, 2020 |

830 words; 4 minutes to read We are told, and believe, that the presumption of innocence is a core concept in Canadian law.  Nobody is or should be presumed guilty until they plead guilty or are convicted in a court...

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German prisons better and cheaper

March 6, 2020 |

Post #126  830 words; 4 minutes to read   Canada’s Correctional Investigator recently released yet another annual report drawing attention to some of the terrible conditions in Canada’s prisons, and the seeming indifference, if not outright opposition, of the government...

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Expunging criminal records

February 26, 2020 |

600 words; 3 minutes to read Last year Senator Kim Pate introduced a bill that would provide automatic expungement of criminal records in Canada.  Under this bill, criminal records would automatically be sealed after a certain amount of time had...

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The sorry state of provincial jails

February 21, 2020 |

630 words; 3 minutes to read The recent release of a new report from the federal Correctional investigator yet again shows the many serious deficiencies in Canada’s prisons, and the indifference of the government to fix these despite many protestations...

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More posts worth a second look

February 7, 2020 |

580 words; 3 minutes to read Many previous posts on this blog continue to be highly relevant.  The problems they addressed remain as prevalent as ever.  These posts show how many of the issues in our system are well known...

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New government fails on criminal justice

January 30, 2020 |

600 words; 3 minutes to read Those who believe in making major reforms to criminal justice in Canada were heartened a few years ago.  The new Liberal government in 2015 made many commitments to address at least some of the...

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Data on Canada’s prison system

January 25, 2020 |

900 words; 4 minute read. The annual performance monitoring report of the Parole Board of Canada is one of the best regular sources of data about criminal justice in Canada – a field where our data are generally quite weak....

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Major problems in Ontario jails and courts

January 16, 2020 |

1000 words; 5 minutes to read. A recent report on the Ontario Ministry of Corrections by the Auditor General found significant problems that involve not just waste of public money, but even more seriously, negative consequences for many people enmeshed...

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What is ‘closure’ in criminal justice?

January 8, 2020 |

850 words; 4 minutes to read ‘Providing closure’ is one of the comments we often hear in media coverage of verdicts and sentences in criminal cases.  The suggestion is that a harsh sentence provides victims of crime, or family members...

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