For Immediate Release

July 23, 2014

Statement by Catherine Latimer, Executive Director of the John Howard Society of Canada on the need to fix our broken bail system.

“Today, the Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA) released a comprehensive study calling attention to Canada’s broken bail system. The fact that more than half the people now behind bars in provincial correctional facilities have not been convicted and sentenced reflects a flawed commitment to the presumption of innocence and a failed bail system in this country.

The John Howard Society of Canada is committed to restoring the presumption of innocence as part of its five-point plan to improve Canada’s corrections system.

Some provinces have greater scope for improvement than others and the John Howard Society of Canada is committed to working with interested parties to support the implementation of CCLA Report recommendations, reduce the over-reliance on expensive pre-trial detention, and improve the conditions of confinement in remand facilities.

The John Howard Society of Canada commends the CCLA for bringing Canada’s broken bail system to the forefront and making specific recommendations for improvement.”


Catherine Latimer is available for comment on the Canadian Civil Liberties Association’s Set up to fail report.

Media Contact: 613-384-6272

Catherine Latimer is Executive Director of the John Howard Society of Canada.

She is formerly Director General of Youth Justice and Strategic Initiatives and Law Reform at the Department of Justice. She was responsible for the development and implementation of the Youth Criminal Justice Act.

The John Howard Society of Canada is a national non-profit organization working to make Canada’s corrections system more effective, just, and humane. The John Howard Society of Canada’s 5-point plan to improve the corrections system focuses on:

  • Respecting the presumption of innocence
  • Suing for peace in the war on drugs
  • Treating rather than punishing the mentally ill and brain injured
  • Pursuing proportionate and constructive penalties for crime
  • Transforming corrections to emphasize contribution.

Link to study:

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