Proceedings of the Standing Senate Committee on
Legal and Constitutional Affairs
Issue 26 - Evidence for November 22, 2012
OTTAWA, Thursday, November 22, 2012
The Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, to which
was referred Bill C-293, An Act to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release
Act (vexatious complainants), met this day at 10:34 a.m. to give consideration
to the bill.
Senator Bob Runciman (Chair) in the chair.
The Chair: Good morning and welcome, colleagues, invited guests and
members of the general public who are following today's proceedings of the
Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs.
We are meeting today to continue our consideration of Bill C-293, An Act to
amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (vexatious complainants).
The stated purpose the bill is to amend the Corrections and Conditional
Release Act to allow the commissioner to prohibit an offender from submitting
any further complaint or grievance, except by leave of the commissioner, when
the offender has consistently filed complaints or grievances that are deemed
vexatious, frivolous or not made in good faith.
This is our third meeting on Bill C-293, and these committee hearings are
open to the public and available via webcast on www.parl.gc.ca. You can find
more information on the schedule of witnesses on the website under ``Senate
I am pleased to welcome to the committee our first witness, from the Canadian
Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies, Kim Pate, Executive Director.
Ms. Pate, I understand that you have an opening statement.
Kim Pate, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry
Societies: Thank you for inviting me and our organization to appear. I
apologize for running in from another appointment, but I am very pleased to be
I think most members are familiar with the organization I represent. The
Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies is an organization of 26
members, across the country, who work in their communities and are responsive to
the needs of communities, working with marginalized, victimized, criminalized
and institutionalized women and girls primarily. In some cases, they also work
with young men. In many cases, they work on a variety of social issues that
pertain to the marginalization and victimization of women and girls as well.
In terms of this bill, I would like to speak to the need not to have this
bill. Current policies already allow for those who are involved in vexatious and
excessive grievances to be addressed. I point to the existing regulations that
outline grievance procedure. I am speaking now particularly about regulation
74(4) that a supervisor — not just the commissioner but also a supervisor —
``may refuse to review a complaint submitted. . .where, in the opinion of the
supervisors, the complaint is frivolous or vexatious or not made in good
We already have the jurisdiction within the existing law and within existing
corrections policy that allows for such grievances to be addressed. Some have
argued — from within corrections, in fact — that this bill will increase the
work of the Commissioner of Corrections by requiring that it be the commissioner
who has to rule on these matters. At times we do not agree with the rulings that
are made, particularly when they have been made, for instance, in Ashley Smith's
case, when another woman was trying to file grievances on her behalf and was
told that it was a frivolous or vexatious complaint. We disagreed with the
notion that she should be disciplined for making a complaint on behalf of
another prisoner. We might have issues with current policy, but, nevertheless,
we would argue that this legislation is superfluous at best and might place a
greater burden on the Commissioner of Corrections than already exists.
As some of the recent issues that you may be familiar with and that have come
to light through the media indicate, women are, in fact, loath to use the
grievance process. Far fewer women than men prisoners actually use the grievance
process. This has been well documented in a variety of contexts, not only by
ourselves but also by the Canadian Human Rights Commission, when they did their
review from 2001-03. They commented on how few women use the grievance and
complaint process. It speaks to the challenges people face in having confidence
I know you heard from Mr. Mullan, so I will not repeat some of the
recommendations that he made yesterday. We would agree that the recommendations
that he made, as well as some of the recommendations made as long ago as when
the Correctional Law Review did its work, would be a preferable approach to
As some of you might know, because of the concern about how few of the women
were using the grievance process and documenting issues, we have actually
participated with a number of other organizations and some of the law students
who were part of my prison law course in the past in training in the prisons on
human rights. We have also been training staff in the institutions about the
value of using the grievance process and the value of knowing your human rights
and exercising them.
Rather than use more taxpayers' money on developing and implementing a law
that is not needed, we would encourage putting in place more process to ensure
that we have the protection of human rights within our prisons.
Senator Fraser: There are three things I would like to ask. We will
try to keep the questions and answers tight.
The original version of this bill, the one that was completely rewritten in
the House of Commons committee, contained two things. These are two of my
questions. I would like to ask you if you think the present bill would be
improved if they were reinserted. One is an explicit provision for judicial
Ms. Pate: Yes, I think it would be improved to have an explicit
provision for judicial review. We have long held that the recommendations that
Louise Arbour made after the Arbour Commission in 1996 still hold that we need
greater external accountability for corrections generally.
Senator Fraser: A second provision they took out, but that strikes me
as being interesting, said:
A decision-maker may not refuse to hear a complaint or grievance that would
result in irreparable, significant or adverse consequences to the offender
if not resolved.
Would this bill — this bill that you do not like — be improved if that were
Ms. Pate: Yes, it would, in my opinion.
Senator Fraser: Do you think it is necessary or do you think that the
system would work adequately without that kind of provision?
Ms. Pate: Even with that provision one of the challenges is that half
the time people who are in prison, men or women, do not know those provisions
exist even though they are supposed to have access to the policies. Second,
their ability to access justice when their rights are violated is increasingly
remote — cuts to legal aid and the inability to get access to their own
documents sometimes. The challenges we have had getting access to documents when
we have the express releases of prisoners demonstrates that.
In Ashley Smith's case we had to go back to Federal Court twice to get not
even all of her documents. With precious few resources that is difficult for us
to do. Trained as a lawyer, having pro bono lawyers assisting us, is not a
situation most prisoners find themselves in.
Senator Fraser: You do not like the bill, but would it be improved if,
instead of having a simple binary system — you may submit grievances or you may
not — the provision about what the commissioner may do said, in addition to
being able to prohibit complaints, that the commissioner could also limit the
number of complaints as an interim step before a complete ban? This would be
closer to what Professor Mullan had recommended. Would that be a workable thing,
do you think?
Ms. Pate: I think it would be administratively challenging because who
would determine the appropriate number? Anything would have to be workable.
Corrections would say they have to implement whatever is put in place, whether
or not that would actually happen, of course.
The current provisions say that they are supposed to take the grievances
seriously, and oftentimes we do not know how frequently the grievance boxes and
complaint forms are even processed. Prisoners are supposed to have copies of
those complaints. They are often given just a photocopied sheet to use and not
given a copy back. Many complaints and grievances go missing.
There are already many administrative challenges, let alone the beginning
position of reluctance to file them and fear of repercussions, even though it
contravenes the law. Everyone knows they still often experience repercussions.
The Chair: Ms. Pate, you say you prefer the current system to what is
embodied in this legislation. If you had your druthers would you perhaps prefer
to see another body or organization dealing with these kinds of issues,
certainly at the level of declaring a multiple griever? The act gives broad
authority to the commissioner. It strikes me, anyway, that there could be an
inherent conflict of interest in being asked to adjudicate a complaint against
We know that the Correctional Investigator already deals with complaints but
I wonder, certainly at the level of declaring someone a multiple griever, if
that were taken out of the hands of folks who, in the view of some, have a
conflict of interest. Do you have any views on that?
Ms. Pate: Certainly we made recommendations for some other approaches,
and even to have the law as it currently exists implemented would be a step in
the right direction.
For instance, I do not know of any federal prisons for women in this country
where they have the kind of grievance committee spelled out in the current
policies and regulations. There may be some prisons for men that do, where they
involve outside individuals as well as prisoners themselves who are part of that
grievance committee. That would be a step forward. My fear is that this will
load more administrative responsibility, but not necessarily make the process
Some of the external accountability measures that the commission of inquiry
recommended involve where there are serious issues of liberty, for instance
segregation, transfers, excessive charging practices, uses of force, some of
those areas should be reviewed judicially and not necessarily by corrections
Certainly one of the practices right now — it is not policy — is that many of
the complaints and grievances filed go back to the very person who is alleged to
have done the inappropriate thing or engaged in the inappropriate behaviour.
The Chair: One of your organization's concerns, I think, relates to
Ashley Smith and the ability with respect to dealing with concerns from
offenders with mental disabilities. Do you think this will have a serious impact
on restricting the rights, if you will, of those kinds of individuals,
especially female inmates?
Ms. Pate: Thank you for raising that. What I was alluding to in terms
of Ashley Smith's situation is the very last grievance she did. I had to write
it out because she was not even permitted access to a crayon. She was not
permitted access to actually look at the paper. I had to hold it up to the
window of her cell door and read it to her. Then I had to make an affidavit form
on that grievance and had the correctional officer who was there, the
supervisor, sign it, attesting to the fact that the only reason she had not
signed it was because she was not permitted anything to write with.
If she was not permitted anything to write with and the only time she was
able to do grievances was when someone else did them for her, I doubt that any
of the correctional officers filed them for her. However, there have been, on
occasion, officers who have done that for individuals, have written them out
where they are not provided with access to writing materials.
In her case she did not know most of the things happening to her were
unlawful, even if she had not had the mental health issues. Some of the things
we found out happened to her after she died. For instance, when I was asking her
about whether she had been involuntarily treated, she did not think she had
The Chair: You are saying this legislation will not ease that?
Ms. Pate: It will not remedy that.
Senator McIntyre: Ms. Pate, I note you have already appeared before
the House of Commons committee regarding this matter, and today you are
appearing before this committee, the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and
Constitutional Affairs. Congratulations; it shows your interest in this matter.
I gather from your evidence today that all the documentation on this issue,
vexatious complainants, points in the same direction. Federal female inmates in
the correctional system tend not to grieve because they are often coerced,
pushed or discouraged from doing so. Why is this happening? Who is behind this?
Are they being coerced, pushed or discouraged by other female inmates or by
Ms. Pate: It varies. Oftentimes staff will discourage inmates from
putting in grievances. That is part of the reason we have done training across
the country. I commend some of the wardens of the women's prisons who have taken
proactive measures. We have presented to them. The argument we put forth to them
is if you are receiving grievances it is a good sign that you are using the
safety valve that exists for prisoners to be able to express their concerns in a
way that is legitimate, not encouraging them to self-injure or other things they
may do to try and express their frustration with what is happening in a prison.
To their credit, some of the wardens have taken up that challenge and asked
me to come and provide training sessions with their managers to talk about the
value of that and have tried to promote staff seeing it as a positive move. For
the most part, as would most human beings if someone is complaining about what
you are doing people, people do not necessarily want to hear it, and often they
will be discouraged from putting in the complaint, sometimes subtly and
sometimes overtly. One example that one of the women gave was, ``I thought you
liked it here. If you don't like it here and if you're going to continue to be
problematic, uncooperative or manipulative and have these kinds of entitlement
issues, then maybe you should go somewhere else.'' The implicit threat to that
woman was that she would be transferred or, at the very least, not supported for
her conditional release plan.
It ranges. There are some very good staff who support women putting in
complaints and grievances and there are some who will contact us and say, ``You
need to come and assist this woman or a group of women with putting in group
grievances.'' It varies, but usually if someone is being discouraged from
putting in a complaint or encouraged to withdraw it, it is usually by staff.
Senator McIntyre: When they do complain, are the complaints related
more to physical ailments or mental health issues?
Ms. Pate: It varies. I know that the correctional investigator reports
that most of their complaints are about health issues. I do not necessary get
all of the complaints from prisoners, but certainly in speaking with the ones
who bring forth their issues to us, they tend to be more serious issues
involving everything from charges to uses of force to segregation to transfers,
occasionally involuntary treatment issues. It varies. I suspect most of them, if
they are putting them in, are about situations they are facing. It is sometimes
paperwork. We have recently had a number about people not having their
paperwork, which sounds innocuous, but that is the reports and assessments that
are required for them to actually start the process to be released to the
community on parole.
Senator Baker: I want to congratulate the witness for the excellent
job she has done on behalf of the association she represents and, in the name of
justice, as far as the inmates are concerned.
The person who will be making the determination here as to who is a frivolous
complainant or a vexatious complainant is, of course, the commissioner. The
commissioner was asked to give an example of a frivolous complaint when he
appeared before the House of Commons committee examining this. I am reading from
page 2 of the transcript of proceedings. Here is what the commissioner gave as
his one example of a frivolous, vexatious complaint that he would then grade
that person as being a frivolous complainant.
The question was by Mr. Leef.
I was just wondering if you have a few examples that you could highlight to
really illustrate what we're talking about here in terms of what would be
frivolous—maybe an actual complaint, if you have one.
Mr. Head replied:
Sure . . . I personally have, throughout my career, dealt with complaints
He goes on to give his history, and then he says as the example:
An individual complains about not getting access to the doctor in a timely
way. We go back; we analyze that; we determine that, yes, there probably
could have been something that could have been done differently; and we
schedule that individual for the next time the doctor comes in. So for all
intents and purposes the issue is dealt with.
The way the law is currently written, that individual, even though the
issue has now been resolved, can still file a grievance and just complain
about the fact that it wasn't resolved in a timely way by our own admission
and carry it on to the next several levels in the grievance system. That
type of grievance serves no purpose at all . . .
That was the example he gave. Now we can see what is on the commissioner's
mind, not potatoes and ice cream but actual grievances. Would you agree that
this business of ice cream and potatoes has been vastly overblown and that
actually we could be giving the commissioner an authority to do something that
actually reflects what he regarded as being a frivolous complaint?
Ms. Pate: He and his staff already have the power to do that in the
regulations that exist. I have seen complaints that have been minor in nature,
in my almost 30 years of doing this. There is no doubt that there are some. My
experience is that most of the time those will be dealt with and resolved and
will not end up going up the line. Certainly I have never seen a complaint about
ice cream or potatoes going to the third level.
Senator Baker: It is in the regulations and it is in his directives to
take care of it. Even if something is partially frivolous, the whole thing can
be thrown out.
In a court judgment on April 29, 2010, the Federal Court dealt with an
affidavit of yours, and the Federal Court ruled in your favour to release
information to you. What shocked me about this case in reading the judgment was
that Ashley Smith had, on several occasions, asked for information. I am reading
from the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies v. Canada, 2010
Carswell NAT 1071 and paragraph 8. On May 31, 2007, Ms. Smith requested under
the Privacy Act access to her personal records, et cetera. She was alleging, in
paragraph 4, improper treatment, assaults and so on, alleged lack of psychiatric
care or assessment. It goes on to say that the institution asked for a 30- day
extension, because the law said you must give it in 30 days. She made a second
In paragraph 13, Ms. Smith committed suicide on October 19, 2007, 123 days
after the first request for records was received, 62 days after the last day of
the 30-day extension, and then it took you three years in court to actually get
This leads to my question. Was it the Attorney General or Corrections Canada
that put up the roadblocks? You had to go to court, where you could have had
costs judged against you, to finally get a judge to say, ``Look, these records
must be released.'' Was it the Attorney General or was it Corrections Canada who
put up these roadblocks to releasing information that an inmate might need or
you may need?
Ms. Pate: In that situation, it was a series of roadblocks. First, the
Privacy Commission ruled in our favour but then determined that they were
functus to force the release of the records, and then the Correctional
Service of Canada deemed they could not verify that the consent still existed.
They ruled in our favour, that we were entitled to receive them, but corrections
still decided that they did not agree with that, and then it was the Justice
lawyers who work on behalf of corrections. It was a combination of Solicitor
General and Attorney General functions.
Senator Baker: What is the problem? We have the Martin report and all
these reports say that Department of Justice lawyers should behave as ministers
of justice, not taking sides, following justice and fairness. Do we need a
course for Attorney General lawyers and Department of Justice to teach them the
way they should be behaving? Is that what we need?
Ms. Pate: I do not think I will comment on that. One of the challenges
we face and the challenge we have raised certainly with both the minister at the
ministerial level and with lawyers in Justice, is that, as a department, it
would seem that the responsibility is to uphold the laws of the land and to
ensure that the Charter is followed, as opposed to what usually happens is that
when a challenge comes, as in the one you are speaking about that we were
involved with or others like the inquests that we were also dealing with,
instead of ensuring that the Charter and the laws are protected and upheld, they
are generally intervening to strike down efforts to have the law upheld.
Senator Dagenais: In response to Senator Baker's question, you
mentioned that there have been, on occasion, complaints that you described as
minor in nature. Could you give me an example of a complaint that you would
describe as minor?
Ms. Pate: When I was working with men, I remember one where an
individual said that they were late getting a phone call. That may not be seen
as frivolous on the one hand, but, on the other hand, it turned out that he was
late getting a phone call because someone else had an urgent phone call that he
knew about. In that context, I would not see the person being struck down. What
we did in that case was to say, ``Look, you are living in a collective here. If
you complain that you did not get your scheduled time slot, next time what if
you are the one with the crisis?'' That is one case.
I think that there was one about food at one point. People wanted more fruit
or a vegetarian diet and did not have a doctor's note, so that was deemed
frivolous. The only ones that I can think of would be things that could have
been resolved by people discussing it.
When you are in an environment like a prison the grievance system is
important in those situations. If those things happened 10, 15, 20, 100 times
you might want to have someone take action, but someone being able to document
it so that they do not do something else like go and punch the person who had
the phone call is preferable to not having those mechanisms exist. Those are the
kinds of things that I can think of. As I say, no disrespect to the men
involved. For them, they might have been very important at the time, but,
relatively speaking, they seemed less important than some of the ones that we
tend to see.
Senator Dagenais: We of course know that following these complaints or
grievances, some time is spent checking their accuracy and investigating the
matter. What would you suggest, in view of the fact that too much time is spent
on investigating complaints; some solution would have to be found to prevent. .
Ms. Pate: Thank you very much for that. One of the recommendations
that came from the women, when we were doing the human rights training, was to
have a series of women have jobs. There is a shortage of employment
opportunities for prisoners, certainly within the women's prisons and probably
within the men's, too. I can only speak with direct knowledge of the women's
One of the things that we suggested — which was accepted by one institution
two years ago but has not yet been implemented — was to hire some of the
individuals who were there to act as a buffer, if you will, to help both
formulate and process the grievances and then set up a grievance committee,
according to the policy that currently exists.
That has been done a bit informally, and it has assisted the process in that
institution, but we do not yet have the positions in place. I would be happy to
share that with the committee if you want. It was developed in conjunction with
the staff at one of the prisons for women, the Edmonton institution. It is
called a grievance advocate clerk sort of position, and that was one that had
merit. There is another institution that has implemented, again, a bit of an
informal process where often the prisoners' committee is involved in looking at
complaints or assisting people, particularly going back to the issue of people
with mental health issues. One thing that we have encouraged is that those
individuals, if they were in those positions, could meet with people in
segregation and assist them with those sorts of efforts. I would be happy to
share that if that is helpful to the committee. That is the job description that
was developed, and I can certainly distribute the human rights booklet if you
are interested. We have it in both languages, and I do apologize that I am not
sufficiently proficient to be able to answer you in French.
Senator Dagenais: Thank you very much, Ms. Pate.
Senator Joyal: Welcome, Ms. Pate. Of course you aware of the report
that Professor Mullan, of Queen's University, released in July of 2010. Were you
consulted or interviewed by Professor Mullan in his investigation or his
reflection before he came forward with recommendations?
Ms. Pate: I was interviewed. We provided him with the recommendations
that we made to the Canadian Human Rights Commission as well.
Senator Joyal: In the context of his recommendations versus the bill
that we have for consideration now, Professor Mullan was here yesterday to
testify. He reasserted his recommendations as being more helpful to resolving
the issue of vexatious and frivolous complaints than the approach that the bill
enshrines. If we have to act on the basis of making a decision to address this
issue, would you support the recommendation of Professor Mullan to restrict the
number of complaints per inmate instead of barring them, for a year, from filing
complaints? What would your preferred option be if you had to choose between the
Ms. Pate: If those were my only options, I would choose Professor
Mullan's recommendation, but, again, because we are dealing with a group of
prisoners who very rarely put in complaints, I do not think that there is any
need for that process either. We would prefer to see the sorts of methods that
we have been talking about where we actually will assist individuals to have
their issues addressed in as meaningful a way as possible.
Senator Joyal: The bill that we have before us gives the commissioner,
in my opinion, an exceptional power to bar an inmate from filing a complaint,
except in specific circumstances. Would you be concerned that that power that is
entrusted to him or her, if the case evolves, is exceptional in the context of
depriving someone of a right once a person is in custody? In my opinion, if you
are depriving someone of his or her right to complain, that person is entitled
to due process, that is, to be the object of a decision from someone who is
independent from the system, someone who has the capacity to hear both sides of
the issue and someone who will give an opportunity to the person to state his or
her case or to get the assistance to state his or her case.
The bill, as it is provided to us, does not give us any assurance that those
essential elements of due process are protected. How would you react if this
bill comes into force and you were faced with such a situation? What would be
your legal standpoint faced with such a situation?
Ms. Pate: My guess is that, if this bill comes into law, it would be
challenged, probably not by a woman prisoner but likely by some of the male
prisoners. My guess is that it would be struck down as not providing due
process. It used to be that the Federal Court would not hear any cases of
prisoners until they had exhausted all of the complaint and grievance processes.
They will now hear them because they recognize that there has been enough
documentation of the ineffectiveness and the unfairness, at times, of that
process. They have heard and do hear cases now.
At the end of 30 days, we always receive a notice, if we filed an Access to
Information and Privacy request on behalf of a woman in prison. Within 30 days,
or usually faster than that, we will get a letter saying that they are seeking
to have a 30-day extension. We routinely do not put in any complaints to the
Privacy Commissioner until at least one — usually two or three — of those
extensions have gone by. That is what happened in Ashley's case as well.
The reality is we already know that there is a significant problem with the
process. Anything that adds more administrative layers to it will not only
interfere with the process and create the sorts of issues you have mentioned,
but also lengthen an already very lengthy process. I have not received
videotapes through that process for years.
Senator Joyal: You cannot really assess if, in your opinion, the
process satisfies what would normally be the obligations that are covered under
due process in the way that the Canadian courts have traditionally interpreted
the legal system?
Ms. Pate: In some ways it is more similar to what we dealt with 20
years ago in trying to get access to documentation than it was even 5 years ago.
Senator Frum: Welcome, Ms. Pate. As you know, the purpose of this
legislation is to deal with the approximately 25 prisoners a year who are
dealing with the system in bad faith. We have heard that 0.1 per cent of the
prison population is issuing as many as 15 to 18 per cent of the grievances.
These grievances number in the hundreds. I appreciate it is not really the
people you represent, it is not the women prisoners who are doing this, maybe
none of the 25 are women, so it is really not your area. However, it might seem
to someone listening that there are no prisoners who use the system in bad
faith. I would argue to Senator Baker that I can imagine even a grievance that
is made about seeing the doctor in a timely fashion, if that grievance is made
after the fact and repeatedly through the process, it can be done in bad faith.
I appreciate you do not like this legislation, but how do you think the
system should deal with those individuals? I think it is a reality. Professor
Mullan used the expression that there are those who are addicted to the
grievance process for the reasons you said, they are under occupied, bored and
angry, and they use the grievance process as a manipulative tool within the
system. What is your recommendation for how to proceed with those individuals?
Ms. Pate: The process that I mentioned, where you involve the
prisoners themselves in it, I think could deal with many of those issues.
Certainly other people who are serving time with individuals who are doing that
would not want to presumably see that process continue either. I think those
kinds of mechanisms would work far more effectively.
Currently, the jurisdiction already exists to deal with those prisoners. I am
not sure what has happened, but my guess would be that those men probably have
received those kinds of restrictions up until now. I am not certain where the
genesis for this came from, aside from perhaps some individuals complaining at a
local level, but certainly this jurisdiction has existed for as long as the CCRA
has been around, since 1992. Before that the grievance process was negligible at
If we had a process where the committees were put in place and others were
engaged in the process of looking at those complaints and assisting, both in
vetting them, helping them to proceed and to resolution, I think that would be a
Senator Frum: Again, some of the testimony we have heard is that over
$5 million is spent on the grievance process and that if you could eliminate the
vexatious complaints you could save upwards of $250,000 a year in the system. I
think that is part of the motivation here. Can you comment on that?
Ms. Pate: I think fighting the complaints probably costs a lot more
than that. I do not know what it costs the government to fight us on the various
things. I do not mean those of you here, I mean in terms of when we are going to
court and have justice lawyers. There is no doubt it is costing a lot more than
$250,000 to keep under wraps some of the information that might be useful to
have exposed to be remedied so we do not see some of those situations continue.
Senator Fraser: I want to come back to the case Senator Baker cited
from Mr. Head in the Commons committee. I am not asking you to comment on that
specific case, because we do not know. Let us treat it as a hypothetical. A
prisoner files a grievance because he did not get a timely appointment with the
doctor, gets to see a doctor the next time the doctor comes around, the
correctional service believes that should be the end of the matter. The prisoner
does not. The prisoner takes it up the line. Why would a prisoner take it up the
line? Is that because the prisoner is not satisfied that there was proper
disciplinary action against the person who refused the doctor's appointment?
What grounds could there be other than frivolity and resentment?
Ms. Pate: I do not know, in that case.
Senator Fraser: Hypothetically speaking.
Ms. Pate: Not just hypothetically, I can give you an example of a
woman we did assist who did not get access to a doctor's appointment. She put in
the grievance before she got access and then got access. It is not clear whether
that was the impetus for her to get access. We also encouraged her to contact
the Correctional Investigator, and we contacted the Correctional Investigator on
her behalf as well.
In her case, sadly, she was concerned that she had a lump. By the time she
got to the doctor it was a significant period of delay and she had breast
cancer. She eventually did get to the doctor. The grievance did proceed and was
upheld in part because the ``in part'' was that she eventually got to see the
doctor. We argued she should proceed with the grievance process not just as a
matter of principle but because it was only upheld in part, which meant there
was not a guarantee that it would not happen to someone else.
The perception was that she had been given access to the doctor, and
therefore to proceed with the grievance would be unnecessary. Our view was not
just because of the repercussions for her but for other women as well, that they
need to have access to timely medical assistance.
Senator Joyal: The bill provides that in some circumstances the
commissioner may allow a complaint, as I read it, ``except by leave of the
commissioner.'' In other words, when an inmate is barred from filing complaints
there is still a possibility for the commissioner to allow one. Of course, one
immediately thinks of a complaint that would involve the life, liberty and
security of the person.
In practical terms, how would that happen? If the person is barred from
filing a complaint, how would that person express him or herself that the
complaint relates directly to his life, security or liberty? In other words, if
the person is barred from filing a complaint, the person is barred. How would
the person fight for his or her life in the context, for instance, of a health
problem or something that deals with the physical integrity of the person?
Ms. Pate: They would have great difficulty unless there was someone
else going into the institution or another process to even get word out that
they wanted to file that kind of complaint. If they were barred already they
would have difficulty if they were in segregation, if they were being denied
writing implements or paper or those sorts of things. I think it would be
incredibly difficult, if not impossible.
The Chair: I have to wrap it up there. Thank you, Ms. Pate, for your
contribution to the committee's deliberations.
Our second witness today is Mr. Jay Pyke, warden of the Kingston
Penitentiary. Mr. Pyke, welcome to the committee. Do you have opening remarks?
Jay Pyke, Warden, Kingston Penitentiary, Correctional Service of Canada:
I do. I wish everyone good morning. I am pleased to be with you today. I am the
Warden of Kingston Penitentiary, often referred to as KP, which is how I will
usually refer to it.
I would like to speak with you briefly regarding KP to give you a sense of
the institutional life and then address some of the challenges we face
pertaining to the offender redress process.
Kingston Penitentiary is a maximum security facility that accommodates
high-risk, high-needs offenders serving a range of sentences between two years
to life. KP has traditionally housed, on average, approximately 390 inmates.
The Chair: Could you slow down a little bit for interpretation
Mr. Pyke: Sure.
The Chair: Thank you.
Mr. Pyke: The number has been reduced over the past several months in
preparation for the site closure, and today our population rests at
approximately 294 inmates.
Inmates at KP are serving sentences for a wide range of offences. The
majority of them have violent histories, significant mental and physical health
concerns, substance abuse problems, behavioural issues or a combination of the
At KP, we are committed to delivering a high level of service to offenders in
terms of maintaining their safety and security, as well as offering programs and
services that aim to reduce their risk to reoffend.
Given the profile of KP's offender population, it is clear that a fair,
expeditious and accessible grievance process that is free of negative
consequence is vital.
I understand you have already spoken to our commissioner and assistant
commissioner of policy on the matter of Bill C-293 and recognize that the
redress process must reflect the values of our democratic society. For CSC, this
process provides the mechanism to test our decisions to ensure that they are
made in a manner that respects the dignity of all individuals while recognizing
that our first priority is to ensure the safety of staff, offenders and society.
From my perspective, CSC's complaint and grievance process has four key
benefits. First, it provides offenders with a means of redress when they feel
they have been treated unfairly or in a manner inconsistent with law and policy.
Second, it contributes to institutional safety through the early identification
and resolution of problems. Third, it contributes to offender accountability by
encouraging offenders to resolve problems through appropriate means. Finally,
this process ensures that CSC's decisions affecting offenders comply with the
rule of law.
As you are likely aware, there are four levels in the process. The first two
levels take place locally at the institution, consisting of the initial formal
complaint followed by a first level grievance. The complaint is responded to by
the immediate supervisor of the person whose actions or decisions are called
into question. The first level grievance is responded to by the warden and
therefore, Mr. Chair, the first level will be my area of focus today.
During the 2011-12 fiscal year, a total of 501 inmate complaints and/or
grievances were submitted locally at KP. Of these 501 complaints, 86, or 17 per
cent of the total, grievances were submitted by three offenders. In the current
fiscal year, 2012-13, to date, a total of 573 grievances have been submitted
locally. Of these, one inmate has accounted for 92, or 16 per cent, of the total
grievances that have been submitted at the site.
The 86 grievances submitted by the three individuals in the 2011-12 fiscal
year and the 92 submitted by the one individual this fiscal year can generally
be characterized as lengthy, complex and touching many subjects or issues. This
fact makes the total number of issues grieved actually larger than the 17 and 16
per cent would suggest, as they require multi-faceted responses.
Of the 86 grievances submitted by the three individuals last fiscal year,
only two were upheld completely. Three were partially upheld owing to the
responses becoming untimely, and the remaining 81 grievances were denied on the
grounds that they had no merit.
Of the 92 complaints and grievances submitted by the one individual this year
to date, one has been upheld, seven have been upheld in part, with the majority
of the rulings speaking to timeliness issues. The remaining grievances were
denied on the grounds that they had no merit.
Despite the initial responses to these complaints, 30 were moved on to the
first level for response. Of those 30, 24 were subsequently moved on the second
or regional level.
As you can imagine, complaints of this nature place a strain on institutional
resources at multiple points of contact. The first point of contact is the
inmate grievance coordinator, who is responsible for recording, assigning,
monitoring time frames, logging and providing response to complaints.
With regard to the four offenders I mentioned, our grievance coordinators are
often faced with the arduous task of checking for duplication of previous
submissions and responses. Copies of these similar submissions are then placed
in the review package for the benefit of the investigators so they do not
reinvestigate an issue that has already received a response.
The next point of contact is the investigator, often at the middle management
level, consisting primarily of a correctional manager or manager of assessment
and intervention. Each complaint must be investigated, the inmate interviewed
and a response generated in a written docket to be provided to the inmate.
Remarkably, it only takes one offender to place considerable strain on the
process due to the significant amount of time required to investigate complex
grievances. When investigating managers become bogged down by virtue of the
volume of complaints, it ultimately leads to an increase in the time required to
provide a proper written response to the inmate.
The impact of complaints of this nature, aside from slowing down the response
capacity, is that they often create a great deal of frustration for staff, who
continue to investigate complaints despite the knowledge that there are concerns
related to the merit of the complaint. What this means is that the staff are
less able to focus their time on investigating and resolving complaints that
have actual merit.
This past fiscal year, one of the three grievers referenced earlier submitted
35 complaints, 22 of which alleged harassment by staff. This volume led to the
establishment of an external review committee. This three-person review
committee was convened on my authority and consisted of an individual from the
redress section from national headquarters, an individual from the redress
section from regional headquarters, and a middle manager from a different site
in the Ontario region.
Of the 22 complaints related to staff harassment made by this one offender,
the committee was responsible for investigating a total of eight. In each
circumstance, the committee found that the allegations of harassment were deemed
to be without merit and frivolous and vexatious in nature. This means numerous
steps and resources are invested at the institutional level to respond to an
individual who consistently submits complaints and grievances that lack merit.
It is also significant to note that in the case of the three primary
complaint grievance submitters at Kingston Penitentiary, that despite clear
responses being provided by the line managers, the offenders chose to move many
of their complaints to the first level grievance where a warden's response was
required. In my experience, it seems that for certain offenders there is an
explicit intent to move the grievance to every level within the organization
regardless of the decision or rationale provided at the lower level. Beyond the
strain on the organization's resources at all levels, there are additional
impacts at the site level. For example, because frivolous and multiple
complaints and grievances slow down the complaints grievance process locally, it
negatively affects those inmates who do not abuse the process and who deserve an
expected timely response.
Ideally, the complaints and grievance system is an important check and
balance process for institutional heads and wardens. It allows the warden to
ensure that the institution and the employees are adhering to the principles of
our mission and relevant law and policy as well as providing a redress process
and mechanism for offenders.
CSC is committed to providing a redress system that is fair, expeditious and
accessible to all offenders.
I thank you, and I would be happy to answer any questions you may have.
The Chair: We will begin with the deputy chair, Senator Fraser.
Senator Fraser: Thank you for this information, which is very helpful
to us. There is nothing quite like hearing from people who are actually involved
in a process.
I would like to come back to the review committee that you established. It
seems like a good step to take, when someone is complaining about harassment by
staff, to set up an external review committee. However, I was struck by the
composition of the committee, which consisted entirely of people from the
correctional service. I was wondering why you would not have included at least
one person from outside the correctional service.
Mr. Pyke: I guess, quite frankly, it made sense to me at the time to
go outside at the national level and regional level and then bringing in a
manager from an outside site, so it would not be localized to Kingston
Penitentiary, for example, in terms of wanting to uphold. The national
headquarters level are individuals from that redress, from my experience, who do
not feel obligated by virtue of a first or even second level response, for that
matter, to necessarily hold pattern with the previous two responses. In my
opinion, it was as transparent as I could get at the time, given the number of
grievances that were quickly piling up owing to harassment allegations.
Senator Fraser: It is the Caesar's wife thing — not only be, but be
seen to be external and independent. We all appreciate that you operate under
many constraints, including budget.
Mr. Pyke: Yes.
Senator Fraser: I will ask a different question, if I may, not
necessarily about this bill. Do we know yet what is happening to the people in
Kingston who are psychiatric patients as the institution closes down?
Mr. Pyke: Yes, the closure plan relates to new builds and relocation
of the maximum security inmates at Kingston Penitentiary. There has been
extensive consultation at the regional level related to where these inmates will
go. We do have a mental health unit at Kingston Penitentiary.
Senator Fraser: It is those prisoners that I am asking about.
Mr. Pyke: The intermediate mental health unit will move to the new
Senator Fraser: As a unit?
Mr. Pyke: As a unit, yes.
Senator Fraser: To the new site, and where will that be? What do we
know about that?
Mr. Pyke: At this point, at my level is all that I can speak to, but I
can tell you that there is a high probability it will move to Millhaven
Institution, the other maximum security institution in the Greater Kingston
Senator Fraser: Will you be able to preserve the staff, and will
prisoners in that unit be able to continue with the same persons who are
responsible for treatment, which I would assume would be fairly important for
Mr. Pyke: Absolutely, yes.
The Chair: How large would that unit be?
Mr. Pyke: Currently, it is 32 beds, and it is always full. The
equivalent would arrive at the new location. I say the ``new location'' because
I cannot say concretely that it will be Millhaven, but I can tell you at this
point in time that is certainly the plan.
Senator Dagenais: Mr. Pyke, obviously I have been listening to you
carefully. I congratulate you for your patience, and you have my deepest
sympathy for having to settle so many grievances. In my opinion, there have been
a great many grievances. I also understand that three inmates, in particular,
submitted the largest percentage of those grievances. Of course, that slows down
the settlement of other complaints, and those inmates are the ones who are
Have you thought of a mechanism, not necessarily to place these three
inmates' grievances at the bottom of the pile, but to give them a lower
priority? We know precisely who these three offenders are, and in fact, it is no
longer a matter of grievances, but of considerable strain on the system: they
are putting a spoke in the process, so to speak. Unless I am mistaken, this is
hurting the other inmates. For these three individuals that you have clearly
identified, have you thought of some other way to process their files, because
for the time being, they are hurting everyone, and at great cost to the
Mr. Pyke: Thank you; that is a good question. I do not have a process
or mechanism in place right now whereby I can put them at the bottom of the
pile, and I am sorry if I go off, but it is important to explain the process
involved as they come in.
The goal is to resolve at the lowest level possible. We find in most
resolutions, if you can get the actual person involved in the process to which
they are complaining about to reach a resolution, the hope is that that will
We have a couple of mechanisms that have been discussed before, but I will go
into them quickly, if I can. We have the ability to recognize an individual as a
multiple griever currently, but it is a little arduous in terms of the amount of
work required to do that. It becomes quantitative in the sense that we can say
that we will identify you as a multiple griever, which means that we will not
respond to more than two grievances in a month. It does not mean we will not
respond to all grievances, but we will limit you to two a month. With the
process, I then have to provide an explanation in terms of why I am identifying
them as multiple griever, before we start into that. Yes, there is a
quantitative element that I can use to limit the number they can put in per
month, but eventually all must be responded to in time.
The other thing they will do is, in the case of these very select few,
purposely put them as a life, liberty or security issue, knowing that that will
expedite the review, and that it goes to the top of the pile as soon as they say
``harassment'' or as soon as they say it is something on life or liberty. By the
time you have got to the investigation and are looking at the dynamics around
that that is when you finally make the determination that this is frivolous in
nature or there is a vexatious intent related to this.
I do not know if that concretely answers your question. I would say we can
limit them but we cannot put them at the bottom of the pile.
Senator Baker: I really appreciate the warden's testimony here today.
He has a very difficult job to do in the position he is in, but I am sure he
fulfills it greatly.
As Senator Dagenais mentioned, three persons with 86 complaints in a fiscal
year averages out to about two a month, and the two-a-month point is where you
could regard them as being frivolous complainants. I wanted to verify this with
you. In a case about four months ago the Federal Court pointed out in Spidel
v. Canada, 2012, Carswell, NAT 2820, at paragraph 9 that sections 97 and 98
of the regulations allow the commissioner of the CSC to make rules or directives
for the purposes of carrying out the objects of the act and regulations. These
Commissioner's Directives have been held to constitute regulations within the
meaning of subsection 2(1) of the Interpretation Act.
There is then a reference, Mercier v. Canada, Federal Court of Appeal,
2010. We are dealing here with Commissioner's Directive 081. The commissioner
has the power to be able to do what was referenced earlier, and that is to
designate someone as being a frivolous objector, and it has the authority of the
regulations under the Interpretation Act. That is what you are referring to; the
Commissioner's Directives are what you are following?
Mr. Pyke: Correct. The Commissioner's Directives basically
operationalize measures for us; they take the laws and put them into an
operational standard that we will use. We make the assumption, and I would like
to believe it is a safe assumption, that our Commissioner's Directives are based
on law and it is how we turn the regulations and interpret them into a
commissioner's direction at the local site level in terms of how we would
continue on with 081.
Senator Baker: That is what the Federal Court of Appeal held to be the
case in the Supreme Court of Canada in a previous judgment. This is the law; he
makes the regulations. What we are talking about today is within the authority
of the commissioner to accomplish through his directives.
I want to compliment you on your submission for another reason. You noted
that the complexity of these complaints and then the grievances give you a
Mr. Pyke: Yes.
Senator Baker: It is the complexity. That is what the deputy
commissioner said to the Federal Court. It is not whether the eggs are
soft-boiled or hard-boiled or the potato is too big or too small, it is the
complexity of some of those complaints. Congratulations on your submission.
That is all, Mr. Chair.
Mr. Pyke: I hope they are all like that. Thank you.
Senator McIntyre: Mr. Pyke, thank you for your presentation. As you
have already pointed out, we have a four- level grievance process:
institutional, regional and national. On this issue, the Senate committee has
already heard the oral testimony of two important witnesses, namely Professor
David Mullan and Don Head, CSC Commissioner. Both are recommending the
elimination of level 2. As a matter of fact, Commissioner Head informed this
committee that CSC has decided to eliminate the second level from the grievance
process, the regional level, beginning in 2013-14.
As a warden and as someone directly involved with grievance process number 1,
are you in favour of this elimination, in other words, the elimination of level
Mr. Pyke: I understand the impact it has across the organization. I
think for a simple answer, yes. Again, for me it really changes very little in
terms of my response at the institutional level. My belief is that by the time I
respond at the first level, we have investigated to the best of our abilities to
provide the response. The next level is frankly our check and balance related to
our response locally to ensure that we are keeping with our application of law
as we interpreted that at the local level.
It is important that we have a further level beyond level 1 for that check
and balance, but I am fine whether it is the second or third level; it is the
fact that the balance and check is there. I hope that answers your question.
Senator McIntyre: My understanding is that sentences at Kingston
Penitentiary range from two years to life. I further understand that what we are
dealing with here is a small number, around 25, of inmates who are continuously
filing a large number of complaints. Of the small number, around 25, who have
been continuously filing those complaints, are they serving a sentence less than
two years or more than two years?
Mr. Pyke: Two of them are serving life sentences. I am speaking
exclusively of the four I have referenced. The other two are term sentences. I
cannot say specifically, but I believe the other two are in the seven- to
Senator Joyal: How long have you been the warden of Kingston
Mr. Pyke: Approximately three years now.
Senator Joyal: That is a very short period of time.
Mr. Pyke: It is relative.
Senator Joyal: When you are in, it is a relative concept.
Mr. Pyke: I started my career at Kingston Penitentiary as a
correctional officer. About 13 years of my experience has been within the walls
of Kingston Penitentiary.
Senator Joyal: Are you aware of any complaints that have found their
way to the court system of Canada from Kingston Penitentiary in the last years?
I stretch the years because your term has been short.
Mr. Pyke: In terms of judicial review, I think one in my term has made
judicial review since I have been the warden.
Senator Joyal: Do you remember the particulars of the case and could
you inform us about it?
Mr. Pyke: I regret that I cannot speak specifically to the case. I
simply have statistics in front of me identifying that I have one. I cannot
speak specifically to it.
Senator Joyal: Is it a final decision or is it still in the court
Mr. Pyke: Again, I am not absolutely certain at this point. I can
provide that information immediately following.
Senator Joyal: The objective of my question is to try to understand
how the system works in Kingston Penitentiary and what are the elements that
might cause problems or raise issues with the system as it is applied presently.
That is essentially the objective of my question; it is not to embarrass you.
Mr. Pyke: It is okay. I can try to answer to the best of my ability,
as you phrase that question. It is really the dynamic involved. A complaint
comes in that may have seven different issues at task. It is trying to respond
and separate those seven issues. How many complaints are we looking at? Do they
need to be responded to as seven different complaints or will we address the
one-off issues all in one final response?
The problem when we try to respond to one complaint with seven different
issues in one response is that inevitably it is transmitted to the next level on
account of the fact that the impression from the inmate is you have not answered
all of the dynamics of my complaint through one generic response, as interpreted
by them. That then lends to it moving to the next level and possibly another
complaint, owing to the nature of that response.
Senator Joyal: An inmate who is in prison for the rest of his life or
for a long term, say 15 years, is certainly not in the same psychological
environment as one who is there for two and half years who can see the light at
the end of tunnel. That person might have more cause to try to rehabilitate and
so on. A person who is in prison for the rest of his life is in a totally
different psychological context. That person has to either come to terms with
the fact that this will be his environment for the rest of his life or try to
amend in order to reintegrate, at some point in time, into the course of normal
life in society. How is psychological service available to people in that
Mr. Pyke: I will comment on the assumption. In my experience, the
assumption that the person doing two or three years is more vested at times in
reintegration is a little overreaching. Our inmate profile has changed
considerably over the last decade. We are seeing, quite frankly, a little bit
shorter sentences at times coming in, but the mentality of the inmate in terms
of ownership or desire to integrate, they have high risk and high need, dynamic
factors come into play.
Markedly, the individual with 15 years or more has a much more vested
interest and concern related to the institutional environment than that of the
individual doing two to three years.
I would say there are two answers. First, in terms of motivation for
reintegration, it does not necessarily equate to length of sentence. We see that
very often now with our current profile. In terms of psychological services
available, at Kingston Penitentiary over 50 per cent of the population routinely
use the psychological services we have on site. We have registered psychologists
on site and a registered psychiatrist on site. We also have behavioural science
technologists who conduct triage.
If an inmate puts forward a request to see someone from psychological
services, a behavioural science technician is sent down and triages with the
inmate and assists with the determination. We will follow up with psychology or
psychiatry or the like.
The other thing is, and frankly a key piece to those types of referrals, are
the front-line staff, the correctional or parole officers. An inmate will not
necessarily always volunteer to come forward and say ``Hey, I have a concern.''
It is perceived at times as weakness in a maximum security facility or that
population environment. A lot of times referrals may come from line staff,
saying, ``He is just not right today,'' or if he is not behaving how he normally
would, usually they will say, ``Hey, how are you?'' Today it was nothing, no
comment or he seemed off. We have a team of resources available. This is further
to the mental health unit, which we referred to earlier. That is an entirely
different range with support to that. Generally, overall, for the population in
segregation we have this group of mental health personnel on staff.
Senator Demers: I commend you on your job. One of my former players
spent time in Kingston, and it is very tough in there with something negative
happening every day and every minute.
To come back to the individual who had 92 grievances, that is close to eight
a month. Every three and half days there was a complaint. Could it be that he
has mental problems? That just seems to be impossible. Had the mental status of
this one inmate been checked?
Mr. Pyke: Absolutely. I can tell you, he is very litigious, this
fellow with the 92 complaints. Believe it or not, this individual was
transferred out of Kingston Penitentiary to an institution out West and
continues to grieve from the institution out West on issues at Kingston
Penitentiary. A significant number of his grievances, almost 50 per cent,
submitted this year have come when he is no longer on site. He continues to
grieve issues that were at the site level. In this particular case he was a
segregated inmate, long-term segregation on a voluntary nature, who refuses to
integrate into the general population, so he certainly has a lot of time on his
During the intake process we screen for psychological assessments related to
the mental health of the individual as they come in and then, depending on the
reintegration and correctional plan, we will look to do further assessments.
This fellow was not suffering from mental health issues. He was a very
litigious fellow and very anti-establishment. Of course, that is what feeds into
this idea that he has time to write, so he gets to writing.
The Chair: Is that your general experience in terms of multiple
grievers? They are not people suffering from some degree of mental illness?
Mr. Pyke: I can only speak to the ones at Kingston Penitentiary, but
none of the four we are referencing here are individuals suffering from mental
health issues in terms of a diagnosis. I will leave it at that.
The Chair: You talked about the maximum security unit that will be
constructed at Millhaven, 32 beds. Then you referenced intermediate. Is that
medium security you are talking about?
Mr. Pyke: No, what we were looking for in CSC was there was a gap
between an acute level mental health facility, like a regional treatment centre,
in Ontario, and a step down where there needed to be an acute centre, but it was
evident that functioning in a regular population environment was not the best.
They needed more support. A few years ago we created this intermediate mental
health unit. It is in a maximum facility, but it is a step down from the acute.
It is to help them integrate back into the open population environment once they
have their medication regimen under control and daily living skills and the
like. For some of them it is just hygienic. A failure to keep up with proper
hygiene in the population will lend to the individual having to go to
segregation. They will run him off the range. They will tell him that is not
The Chair: What size is that unit?
Mr. Pyke: Do you mean the intermediate mental health unit?
The Chair: Yes.
Mr. Pyke: That is the 32-bed unit I was referring to.
The Chair: I am told that currently at the treatment centre you have
Mr. Pyke: Approximately, yes.
The Chair: You are talking about 32. What happens to the remainder?
Mr. Pyke: Sorry, this is not the regional treatment centre move. This
is a unit that has been within the walls of Kingston Penitentiary for years now.
When Kingston Penitentiary moves, this unit within the walls will also move with
all the resources related to addressing mental health concerns.
The Chair: Will that be within the walls of Millhaven?
Mr. Pyke: Correct.
The Chair: What about the regional treatment centre?
Mr. Pyke: The regional treatment centre is being relocated as well, in
its entirety, with the staff, between two sites. It will be relocated between
Bath Institution, which is a medium-level institution, and the maximum security
acute unit, which the existing treatment centre has, that will be located at
The Chair: Are they currently separated?
Mr. Pyke: They are, by physical infrastructure. The first floor is the
acute, maximum security unit at the existing treatment centre. In fact, Bath and
Millhaven are literally across the street from each other. It is the same
complex; they are two separate institutions with a road that divides them.
The first floor at the regional treatment centre will become the crew and
staff at Millhaven in that acute unit for maximum security inmates. The
remainder of those individuals will be housed at Bath Institution, medium
The Chair: You say the 32 beds are filled all the time. What happens
if you have inmates coming in who are suffering severe mental illness and the
beds are full? What do you do with those individuals?
Mr. Pyke: I can only speak to the resources I have. We have the one
unit currently. We will address whether they need acute care or whether they
need intermediate care. If the unit is full all we can do is make reference in
terms of wait list for attendance to either the IMHU or the original treatment
centre and then attend to them with the existing psychology staff we have.
The Chair: Do you segregate them from the rest of the population?
Mr. Pyke: Not necessarily. We do have one living unit at Kingston
Penitentiary that houses, almost exclusively, lower-functioning individuals so
they are not preyed upon on the living unit itself. They can be out amongst
themselves, they are not being — sorry to use jail terms — ``muscled'' or pushed
into giving up personal effects and the like or being manipulated into holding
institutional alcohol, brew or the like. Kingston Penitentiary has five
different sub-populations under one roof to help manage the fact that we do not
have that. We do not have an excessive number of individuals in segregation on
account of the fact that there is quite a different population base.
The Chair: Thank you, Mr. Pyke. We strayed a bit beyond Bill C-293. I
did as well. It was very interesting and we appreciate your appearance to assist