Yesterday the 44th Annual Report of the Office of the Correctional Investigator was tabled in Parliament. It was the first annual report issued by Dr. Ivan Zinger, who was appointed the Correctional Investigator of Canada on January 1, 2017.
As the ombudsperson for federally sentenced offenders, the Correctional Investigator "serves Canadians and contributes to safe, lawful and humane corrections through independent oversight of the Correctional Service of Canada."
In the report, the Correctional Investigator makes 17 recommendations that touch on all aspects of material and living conditions in federal prisons. It addresses matters such as access to prison health care; prevention of deaths in custody; Indigenous corrections; safe and timely reintegration; and issues affecting federally sentenced women.
The Correctional Investigator also expresses concern that the needs of older inmates are not being properly met:
"[I]n response to a recommendation in last year’s Annual Report, the [Correctional Service of Canada] agreed to develop a national older offender strategy to address the care and custody needs of offenders aged 50 or older. At that time, CSC’s response indicated that it would begin developing the strategy over the course of 2016-17, to be completed in 2017-18. As time passes, I remain concerned that the needs of 25% of the inmate population are not being properly met or served. In the coming year, I fully expect my Office to be briefed and consulted on a comprehensive and responsive package of older offender initiatives that addresses an area of outstanding concern dating back to 2010/11, when this recommendation was first made."
The full report is available on the Correctional Investigator's website.
About Dementia Justice
Dementia Justice is a federally incorporated non-profit society dedicated to advancing the rights, needs and dignity of people with dementia who are, or are at risk of becoming, involved with the criminal justice system. We aim to achieve our objectives through public advocacy, awareness-raising, education, and interdisciplinary legal and policy research.