West Coast Prison Justice Society

Registration open! Supporting Prisoners’ Mental Health

Conference Date: June 2, 2017 | Conference Location: Vancouver Convention Centre.

Supporting Prisoners’ Mental Health: Best practices and alternatives to solitary confinement

Register now!
This day-long collaborative conference will provide a forum for medical professionals to discuss ways that they can comply with the UN Mandela Rules and advocate for their patients’ mental health in a correctional setting, navigating the waters between ethical and professional obligations and the security concerns of the prison environment.

Confirmed speakers

Dr. Gabor Maté, Best-selling author and retired medical doctor
Dr. Craig Haney, Distinguished Professor of Psychology, University of California, Santa Cruz
Jennifer Wheatley, Assistant Commissioner, Health Services, Correctional Service Canada
Dr. Diane A. Rothon, Medical Director, BC Corrections
Dr. John Livesley, Professor Emeritus, University of British Columbia
Dr. Ruth Elwood Martin, Clinical Professor, University of British Columbia
Jean-Frédéric Boulais, Director of Investigations and General Counsel, Office of the Correctional Investigator

Conference topics will include: the harms of solitary confinement; trauma and addiction; current standards for accommodating and treating prisoners with mental health issues, including personality disorders; and implementation of the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (the Mandela Rules).

We especially welcome doctors, nurses, psychiatrists, psychologists, counsellors and other correctional healthcare providers, as well as correctional staff whose work overlaps with mental healthcare and policy development.

Click here to register now – seats are limited. A full agenda will be available shortly. Please email info@pls-bc.ca if you have any questions.

Presented by the West Coast Prison Justice Society with funding from the Law Foundation of BC.

Supporting Prisoner’s Mental Health: A False Choice between Treatment and Security

JT suffers from frontal lobe deficits, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and complex post-traumatic stress disorder. He entered the federal prison system in 1995, where he was held in solitary confinement for extended periods of time. He began to self-harm in the form of head-banging as a coping mechanism.

The Correctional Service of Canada put JT under a Behaviour Management Protocol that required him to be locked in his cell if he engaged in head-banging, and to remain there for 24 hours without banging his head. If he did not stop banging his head, he would be given an order to stop and then force, including chemical agents, would be used against him. He was held in solitary confinement for hundreds of days…

Read the whole story at bc-counsellors.org. Also check out the conference we are hosting on June 2, 2017 on mental healthcare in prisons.

How Adam Capay’s ordeal might set him free

Ontario’s ombudsman condemns system that leaves a man in solitary for four years. Could mistreatment of Capay scuttle the murder case against him?

On October 9, 2016, the Ministry of Correctional Services of Ontario filed a report stating that 24-year-old Adam Capay had spent 50 days in solitary confinement. Four days later, another report, prompted by scrutiny from the Ontario Human Rights Commissioner Renu Mandhane, revealed that the ministry had miscounted Capay’s time in segregation by a whopping 1,541 days. By the time Capay was moved out of segregation, he had spent 1,636 consecutive days in solitary confinement, the longest known placement in Ontario’s history.

Read the whole story at Macleans.ca

Photo credit: Adam Capay going into court in 2012. (Jeff Labine/DougallMedia/tbnewswatch.com)

Transgender inmate hopes to make history with transfer to women’s prison

Fallon Aubee says she has faced discrimination and abuse behind bars.

After nearly two decades of taunts, threats and physical abuse behind bars, Fallon Aubee hopes to become Canada’s first federal inmate to be placed in a prison based on gender identity rather than biological sex at birth.

Read the whole story at CBC.ca

Donate to us through Contacts for Less

We have been listed as a non-profit eligible for donations from ContactsforLess!

If you or someone you know needs contact lenses, consider purchasing them through contactsforless.ca. You can then choose to have the West Coast Prison Justice Society receive a portion of the proceeds.

Save money on contact lenses and help promote human rights in British Columbia prisons.

How one trans woman prompted Canadian jails to stop sorting inmates by genitalia

Teresa Windsor raised the issue with Justin Trudeau, causing federal jails to change course just just three days after prolonging ‘reprehensible’ policy. Read the whole story at DailyXtra

Trudeau promises to house trans inmates based on gender identity

‘Trans rights are human rights,’ PM says, but pledge runs counter to new prison policy

Read the whole story at CBC.ca

Gender identity vs. genitalia: Prison policy changes on the way for trans inmates

Correctional investigator Howard Sapers calls for placement based on gender identity.
Read the whole story at CBC.ca

B.C. Corrections to review solitary confinement program after court ruling

Judge rules inmates under Enhanced Supervision Placement must get written reasons for placement. Read the whole story at CBC.ca