At John Howard Society Canada, we have arranged for some activities that we hope will raise public awareness about our charity and its engagement on issues and delivery of services to further just, effective, and humane responses to the causes and consequences of crime.  These will begin on February 12, 2023 and run for the week.  I hope you will be able to participate.

Throughout the week, our Blog editor with the help of Emily Stewart  will be hosting an on-line discussion on the media and criminal justice policy and law reform.  Expert guests will be tackling the challenge of sensationalized media coverage of crime coupled with calls for harsher measures – more police, longer sentences, reduced bail and so on.  A growing body of evidence demonstrates that these tougher measures do not work and inevitably end up targeting already marginalized groups in society.  The guests will comment on why there is such a disconnect in criminal justice between evidence and our rhetoric and policy and what can be done and by whom to reduce this gap.  The Forum discussion will appear starting Monday Feb 13 on our website under the Get Involved tab on the home page.

John Howard Society of Canada has also arranged for a series of events that will take place each day at 1 pm throughout the week.  Please use this link each day to join in:

Monday, February 13, 2023: After 20 years, what can the YCJA teach the adult system? 

Mr.  Justice David Cole, who spent more than 30 years on the Bench in the Ontario courts, has agreed to host this panel with:

Richard Barnhorst, one of the key architects of the YCJA, lawyer, former Department of Justice policy analyst; and

Nicole Myers, Professor at Queen’s University with a  research interest in the Canadian bail system.

Tuesday, February 14, 2023:  Accessing Correctional Information

Catherine Latimer, ED of JHSC and grateful articling principal, will convene a panel with past and present articling fellows to discuss developments in accessing important information

Murray Fallis, former articling fellow now working for a childrens’ rights charity in the UK, will speak about a successful judicial review of a ATIP decision to deny access to anonymized prisoner grievances on the basis that they were hand-written

Lea Keren, former articling fellow, now working for Innocence Canada, will address whether a deemed refusal to provide information further to a prisoner’s ATIP request violates Charter rights

Vivian Sim, current articling fellow, will discuss the failure to provide prisoners and their patient advocates timely access to health records and what could be done to expedite the process

Catherine Latimer will comment on the reported 10-year delay for Christophe Lewis to get access to the use of force video tape of the incident at Millhaven and argue that use of force tapes should be made publicly available.

Wednesday, February 15,2023   Can the Nordic Reintegration Approach Help Reduce Recidivism in Canada?

Iridian Grenada, a person with lived experience of incarceration, will share his research and recommendations on what elements of the successful Norwegian correctional model could be incorporated into the federal correctional system.

Thursday, February 16, 2023  Structured Intervention Units (SIU) and the effectiveness of Independent External Decision Makers component

Howard Sapers, current chair of the SIU Implementation Advisory Panel and former Correctional Investigator, will present on the First Annual Report of the Panel with a particular focus on challenges for effective Independent external decision making.

Friday, February 17, 2023  Criminal Record Suspension Programs

Rhea Higginson will host a discussion with JHS affiliates that were selected to provide criminal record suspension programs across the country, or who currently provide supports for clients seeking record suspensions.  We hope to find some ways that affiliates can support each other in the delivery of the program and find ways to work together.

Please feel free to share this invitation to participate in John Howard Society Week activities with those who might be interested.



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