Parole Board of Canada
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Performance Monitoring Report 2006-2007

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1. INTRODUCTION

This report provides multi-year performance information, with an emphasis on fiscal year 2006-2007, for the National Parole Board's two legislatively based programs-conditional release and clemency and pardons, as well as for the corporate service function of the Board.

The Government of Canada operates on a fiscal year basis, which runs from April 1 to March 31, and, unless otherwise stated, the information in this document is reported on this basis. As well, in cases where offender populations are reported by fiscal years, they present figures at fiscal year-end March 31.

2. THE ENVIRONMENT OF THE BOARD

Public safety and security are fundamental to Canada's economic and social well-being. However, a changing global and domestic environment is placing significant pressures on the continued effectiveness of our law enforcement, security, corrections and parole agencies. These pressures may require adjustments to Canada's system of corrections and conditional release to be reflective of initiatives for legislative revision, demographic changes, shifting crime patterns, the changing composition of Canada's federal offender population and evolving public attitudes towards criminal justice issues. As the federal government is responsible for a significant portion of correctional and conditional release services in Canada, it has an integral role to play in developing effective strategies to deal with these trends.

The Board works in a complex environment which demands effective support for government priorities, careful assessment of pressures within the justice system, thoughtful consideration of public issues and concerns in a dynamic and challenging community context and rigorous pursuit of innovation and improvement to meet workload pressures. A number of trends in both the Board's external and internal environments are discussed below.

GOVERNMENT PRIORITIES1

Consistent with the Speech from the Throne of April 2006, the Government of Canada has outlined its agenda for 2007 and pledged to continue to build a stronger, safer, better Canada . As part of this overall plan, the Government will pursue an active agenda built around four pillars: accountability, environmental protection, strong economic management and security.

The federal agenda points to five priority areas that the government will focus on in the months ahead: further tax reductions as part of a comprehensive economic agenda, continued steps to tackle crime, further strengthening of Canada's global image and the rebuilding of the Canadian Forces, strengthening the federation by addressing Senate reform and fiscal balance with the provinces, and clear, decisive steps to protect the environment.

In the area of criminal justice, the Government has committed to protecting Canadians by toughening laws as well as sentences for violent and repeat offenders, particularly those involved in weapons-related crimes, putting more police officers on the streets and strengthening border security.

Initiatives found in Budget 2007 in the area of criminal justice include a new National Anti-Drug Strategy with $64 million over two years to crack down on gangs, combat illicit drug production such as grow-ops and methamphetamine labs, prevent illicit drug use and treat illicit drug dependency. This funding will also enhance the capacity of the criminal justice system to investigate, indict and prosecute offenders. Stronger penalties will be put in place for serious drug crimes. Other initiatives include: an additional $6 million per year to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to protect children from sexual exploitation and trafficking; taking action to crack down on white-collar crime by appointing a senior expert advisor to the RCMP to help develop and guide the implementation of a plan to improve the effectiveness of the Integrated Market Enforcement Teams; improving front-end screening of first-time firearms licence applicants with $14 million over two years; investing $80 million over two years to make the Canadian Security Intelligence Service's operations more effective; and providing the Correctional Service of Canada with $102 million over two years to begin updating its infrastructure, equipment and programming, pending the results of a panel review.

The federal agenda to enhance public safety has important implications for the PBC. The Government's proposals for toughening laws as well as sentences will have a significant impact on the PBC as longer sentences will increase the offender population, which will, in turn, add to the high workload volumes that the Board already deals with.

The Board must also deal with important challenges such as the information needs of victims, the broad impacts of diversity, the over-representation of Aboriginal people in the justice system and low levels of public confidence in parole and parole boards. All of these issues are considered in the context of the PBC's enduring commitment to public safety.

The challenge for the Board, given its small size and very limited resources, both human and financial, will be to manage to respond to new government initiatives in addition to its key priorities of enhancing risk assessment instruments and training, developing innovative parole decision models and engaging the public and working in partnership in developing effective strategies for conditional release.

CRIME RATES AND TRENDS2

The national crime rate in Canada decreased 3% in 2006. Property crimes decreased by 4%, while other Criminal Code offences dropped by 3% and the rate of violent crime remained stable, despite increases in serious crimes other than homicide.

The national crime rate has generally been decreasing since 1991, dropping by about 30%. This puts the 2006 crime rate at its lowest level in over 25 years.

The drop in crime at the national level was seen right across the country. Among the provinces, the largest drop was reported in Prince Edward Island
(decrease 11%), followed by declines of about 5% in Alberta, New Brunswick and British Columbia.

There are substantial regional differences in crime rates. Prior to 2002, crime rates historically increased from east to west. However, in recent years, Ontario and Quebec recorded lower rates than most Atlantic provinces. This was further reinforced in 2006, as Ontario and Quebec recorded rates that were lower than the Atlantic provinces. The western provinces continued to have the highest rates among the provinces with Saskatchewan reporting the highest crime rate among the provinces for the 9 th year in a row, followed by Manitoba, British Columbia and Alberta.

In 2006, provincial crime rates varied from a low of 5,689 incidents per 100,000 population in Ontario to a high of 13,711 in Saskatchewan. Among the Atlantic provinces, Newfoundland and Labrador had the lowest recorded crime rate for the 23rd consecutive year, while for the western provinces, Alberta had the lowest rate for the 14th straight year.

Trends in crime have important implications for Board policy, training and operations as the Board must continually enhance its risk assessment tools and training to adapt to changes in the offender profile.

Table 1

Source: Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics,
Juristat: Crime Statistics in Canada, 2007
CRIMINAL CODE INCIDENTS/100,000 POPULATION
  Violent Property Other Criminal Code3 Total Criminal Code Incidents
Year # % change # % change # % change # % change
1996 1002 -0.7 5274 -0.3 2656 -1.9 8932 -0.8
1997 993 -0.9 4880 -7.5 2603 -2.0 8475 -5.1
1998 982 -1.1 4569 -6.4 2610 0.3 8161 -3.7
1999 958 -2.4 4276 -6.4 2518 -3.5 7752 -5.0
2000 984 2.7 4081 -4.6 2601 3.3 7666 -1.1
2001 984 -0.1 4004 -1.9 2668 2.6 7655 -0.1
2002 969 -1.5 3973 -0.8 2764 3.6 7706 0.7
2003 965 -0.4 4121 3.7 3057 10.6 8142 5.7
2004 945 -2.1 3970 -3.7 3247 6.2 8162 0.2
2005 950 0.5 3737 -5.9 3086 -5.0 7772 -4.8
2006 951 0.1 3588 -4.0 2980 -3.4 7518 -3.3
Note: Information in this table is provided on a calendar year basis.

Of the nearly 2.5 million Criminal Code incidents (excluding traffic offences and other federal statutes such as drug offences) reported to police in 2006, 13% were violent crimes, 48% were property crimes, and the remaining 40% were "other" Criminal Code incidents (such as mischief, counterfeiting, disturbing the peace and bail violations).

The distribution of offences has steadily changed over the last twenty-five years. In 1980, violent crimes represented a smaller proportion of all crimes (8%), property crimes had a higher representation (65%) and other Criminal Code offences had a lower representation (27%).

The overall violent crime rate remained stable in 2006 mainly due to the relative stability in the rate of common assaults which account for about 6 in 10 violent crimes. However, other than the drop in homicides, most other serious violent crimes were on the rise, similar to 2005.

The property crime rate decreased for the third consecutive year, dropping 4%. This puts the property crime rate at the lowest level recorded in over 30 years. The decrease in 2006 was led by a decrease in break and enters as well as thefts. There were about 11,000 fewer break-ins (down 5%) and 22,000 fewer thefts under $5,000 (a drop of 4%) reported in 2006.

Criminal Code incidents that are classified as neither property crimes nor violent crimes fall into the category of "Other Criminal Code" offences. After steadily increasing since 2000, the rate of "other Criminal Code" offences decreased (3%) in 2006 for the second consecutive year. While declines were seen in almost every offence, the most notable drop was found in counterfeiting which fell 29%. Previous increases in counterfeiting contributed to the upward trend in previous years.

Like the violent crime rate in Canada, the proportion of federal warrant of committal admissions which were for violent offences has been declining, from 62% in 1996/97 to 54% in 2006/07. On the other hand, the proportion of warrant of committal admissions for non-violent offences increased from 38% in 1996/97 to 46% in 2006/07.

CRIMINAL COURT RATES AND TRENDS4

Courts are responsible for making a number of critical decisions about a criminal case. These decisions include the determination of whether the Crown has established the guilt of the accused beyond a reasonable doubt, and for those offenders found guilty (or who plead guilty), the court must determine the nature of the sentence that will be imposed.

Trends in crime and incarceration have important implications for PBC policy, training and operations. The changing nature of the incarcerated population demands that the Board continue to enhance risk assessment tools and training related to various groups, including sex offenders, armed robbers, etc. The annual number of admissions to custody and average sentence lengths determine the Board's workloads as offenders become eligible for parole. The challenge for the Board is to ensure that it has sufficient resources to respond to these workloads and that these resources are allocated in a manner which addresses regional variations and needs.

The Adult Criminal Court Survey (ACCS) for 2003/04 revealed that the number of cases heard in adult criminal court decreased by 4% over the previous year. While the decrease in 2003/04 follows two consecutive years of increases, the longer-term trend has been downward. In fact, the number of cases disposed in 2003/04 represents a 13% decrease over the number of cases completed in 1994/955. The downward trend generally corresponds to the pattern in police-recorded crime statistics reported to the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Survey. From 1994 to 2003, there was a drop of 9% in the number of adults charged in the same jurisdictions that report to the ACCS.

Of the provinces and territory which reported to the ACCS in 2003/04, Ontario was responsible for 44% of the cases heard, followed by Quebec at 16% and Alberta at 14%.

Cases are also becoming more complex. The number of multiple charge cases, which are more complex and often more serious, has increased 7% since 1994/95, going from 44% of the caseload in 1994/95 to 51% of the caseload in 2003/04. About 27% of all cases in 2003/04 involved two charges and 24% had three or more charges.

In 2003/04, crimes against the person accounted for 27% of the total number of cases, crimes against property accounted for 23%, administration of justice cases accounted for 18% and Criminal Code traffic accounted for 13%. Other Criminal Code offences (which included weapons offences and disturbing the peace offences) represented 7% of all cases. The remaining 12% of cases dealt with other federal statute offences, which included drug-related offences, Customs Act offences, Income TaxAct offences and other federal statutes.

In 2003/04, the most frequently occurring offences were impaired driving (11%) and common assault (11%). Theft offences constituted 9% of all cases, while failure to comply with a court order (8%), breach of probation (6%), major assault (6%) and uttering threats (5%) were the next most frequently occurring offences. Taken together, all forms of sexual assault and other sexual offences accounted for less than 2% of the caseload in adult criminal courts. Homicide and attempted murder together accounted for approximately 0.2% of total cases.

A conviction was recorded in 58% of the 445,650 cases heard in 2003/04.

Probation was the most common sentence in 2003/04, imposed in 46% of all guilty cases. Since 1994/95, this proportion has increased from 37%. A prison term was imposed in 35% of cases. This proportion has not varied much over time but was slightly higher in 2003/04 than it was in 1994/95 (33%). A fine was imposed in 32% of all cases in 2003/04. This proportion has decreased from 47% in 1994/95. Approximately 22% of convicted cases received an absolute or conditional discharge or a suspended sentence, 5% were given a conditional sentence and 4% were ordered to pay restitution.

The proportion of cases sentenced to prison varies across the country. In 2003/04, the highest incarceration rate was in Prince Edward Island, where 58% of guilty cases resulted in a term of imprisonment, while the lowest rates of incarceration were in Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia and Quebec where prison was imposed in about one-quarter of cases. The variation in the use of incarceration reflects the influence of several factors. First, the mix of offences being sentenced can vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. If a particular jurisdiction has a higher than average percentage of the more serious crimes, it may also have a higher than average overall percentage of cases being sent to prison.

Second, courts in different parts of the country may use incarceration in different ways. In Prince Edward Island , for example, offenders are frequently sent to prison for their first impaired driving conviction (91% of impaired driving convictions resulted in incarceration in 2003/04). This was by far the highest in Canada followed by Newfoundland and Labrador at 29%.

Most terms of imprisonment are relatively short. Over half (57%) of all custodial sentences imposed in 2003/04 were one month or less, while an additional 31% were for periods of greater than one month up to six months. Custodial sentences of greater than 6 months but less than two years were imposed in 8% of cases, while 4% of custodial sentences were for a term of two years or more.

For convicted cases with sentences of two years or more, the average aggregate sentence length of warrant of committal admissions (excluding indeterminate sentences) has declined since 1994/95. The average sentence length declined from 3.9 years in 1994/95 to 3.0 years in 2005/06. During the same period, the number of warrant of committal admissions with indeterminate sentences (which includes lifers and dangerous offenders) has varied between a high of 199 in 1996/97 and a low of 140 in 2003/04.

FEAR OF CRIME AND PUBLIC CONFIDENCE IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE6

Fear of Crime

Canadians' perceptions of crime in their community can be shaped by a number of factors, including their own personal and household victimization; experiences of those close to them and media reports of criminal incidents.

The latest administration of the General Social Survey (GSS), in 2004, showed that most Canadians believe that crime is lower in their neighbourhood than elsewhere in Canada. About six in ten Canadians (59%) had this opinion, while a further three in ten (29%) thought neighbourhood crime levels were about the same as in other neighbourhoods.

Results from the 2004 GSS revealed that almost six in ten Canadians (58%) believed that their neighbourhood crime rate has remained unchanged over the past five years. Another 30% of the population were of the opinion that crime had worsened in their community, while 6% expressed the belief that crime had dropped. In general, opinions have improved since 1993, when Canadians were more likely to say that crime in their neighbourhood was on the rise (46%) than they were to say that crime was unchanged from five years earlier.

Fear of crime can be measured by feelings of satisfaction with personal safety from crime and an individual's anticipated fear of or worry about becoming a victim. The 2004 GSS asked respondents about their overall satisfaction with their own personal safety from crime, as well as their level of fear of crime in three situations: being home alone at night, taking public transportation at night and walking alone after dark.

In 2004, the overwhelming majority of Canadians were satisfied with their safety from being a victim and this proportion is growing. Fully 94% of Canadians indicated that they were somewhat or very satisfied with their safety from crime, up from 91% in 1999 and 86% in 1993.

The figure remains high but is slightly lower when considering specific situations. For example, nine in ten Canadians (90%) who walked alone in their neighbourhood at night felt safe doing so- 46% felt reasonable safe and 44% felt very safe. This represents a continuing positive trend, up from 88% in 1999 and 86% in 1993. Of those individuals who stayed at home alone in the evening or at night, 80% believed that being in this situation was not at all worrisome, the same proportion as in 1999. Waiting for or using public transportation alone after dark remains the most fear-inducing among the three situations. In 2004, fewer than six in ten (57%) were not at all worried about being the victim of a crime when using public transportation at night, up from 54% in 1999.

Public Confidence in Criminal Justice

A wealth of research has recently been conducted on public attitudes to the criminal justice system. A comprehensive literature review on public opinion and corrections in Canada was conducted by Julian V. Roberts in 2005 for Correctional Service Canada. The following themes were addressed (among others): public knowledge of corrections, confidence in the correctional system, public opinion on the purpose of corrections, and the effect of information on attitudes.

Several studies have revealed the same finding: most people know little about the nature and functioning of the correctional system. A self-reported level of knowledge survey conducted in 2004 indicated that 7% of the respondents rated themselves as very informed, while 40% responded with "somewhat informed". The other respondents (53%) rated themselves as not very or not at all informed. Other findings on public knowledge of corrections indicated that people know little about the use of imprisonment in Canada and about life in prison, but assume that it is too easy. Moreover, the general public attitude is that the justice system is generally too lenient. Furthermore, most Canadians cited the news media as their principal source of information about corrections. As corrections in the news generally mean bad news, this may explain most of the misperceptions or stereotypes held by the public.

Public trust, confidence and respect for the justice system are essential to ensure continued public participation and support. One component of this is public satisfaction with the work of the police, courts, correctional and parole systems and the public's perception of personal safety from crime. A 2002 survey revealed that the public had most confidence in the police, and the least in the prison system. There was a positive balance for all branches of the justice system – except for the prison and parole systems, with the greatest confidence deficit emerging for the parole system. Fully 88% of respondents stated that they were very or somewhat confident in the police; less that half the sample expressed this level of confidence in the prison system and approximately one third of respondents expressed this level of confidence with respect to the parole system. This hierarchy of confidence has been stable for many years, however there is some limited evidence that Canadians' confidence in corrections has increased. Several explanations present themselves to account for this universal hierarchy of confidence in the justice system. The different mandates of the organizations are clearly relevant and the public is more sympathetic to crime control than due process.

A number of surveys demonstrated that Canadians continue to support reintegration. A nationwide poll conducted in 2002 found that more than four out of five respondents agreed that: "a significant number of offenders can become law-abiding citizens through programs, education and other support". The same results were found in a 2004 survey. However, the pattern of responses reverses itself when respondents are asked about the rehabilitation potential of violent and/or sexual offenders.

Parole remains one of the most controversial elements of the correctional system in Canada. Representative surveys of the Canadian public have revealed that most Canadians: over-estimated the parole grant rate; assumed that all inmates apply for parole, and that they all receive parole at the first application; over-estimated the revocation rate, and assumed that revocation occurs most often in response to a new offence; and over-estimated the recidivism rate of offenders released on parole (a proportion of 75% of the respondents over-estimated this rate).

Although members of the public may frequently be critical of the parole system, they do not support abolishing it. A number of explorations of public attitudes to parole have been conducted over the past few years and they revealed that the public supported a parole system over the "no-parole" option by a margin of 3 to 1. Moreover, in a 2002 survey, respondents were asked to agree or to disagree with the statement that: "It is safer to gradually release offenders into society under supervision and control than to release then without conditions at the end of the sentence". 84% agreed and 14% disagreed with the statement. These findings were confirmed by focus groups conducted in 2004. It should however be noted that the public remained opposed to parole for violent offenders, particularly offenders serving life for murder.

The ageing of Canadian society, which is expected to heighten public sensitivity to issues of crime and safety, coupled with the public's limited understanding of conditional release and its expectations for meaningful debate on the key issues of public safety, create urgent pressures for the Board to continue to engage communities in discussion of conditional release and to forge community partnerships for the safe reintegration of offenders. Community engagement must be supported by clear and accurate information about the effectiveness of conditional release and by processes which monitor performance.

VICTIMS OF CRIME7

Victims' involvement in federal corrections and conditional release has grown extensively over the past few years since the tabling in Parliament of the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights Report Victim's Rights – A Voice Not a Veto.

In order to continue to improve the information and assistance provided to victims, the Government recently announced the establishment of an office for a Federal Ombudsman for victims of crime as well as further funding for programs and services to support Canada's victims of crimes. This announcement, totalling $52 million over four years, fulfills a promise made by the Government to better meet the needs of victims of crime in matters of federal jurisdiction.

The Federal Ombudsman will be appointed to ensure the federal government meets its legislative and policy commitments; to promote access to existing government programs and services; and to identify and explore systemic and emerging victim issues. The Ombudsman will operate at arm's length from the federal departments responsible for victim issues. It should be noted that the provinces and territories will continue to be the primary providers of victim services and funding.

In addition, new funds will go towards helping federal, provincial and territorial governments respond more effectively to the needs of victims of crime across the justice and federal corrections system. These measures will help support victims as they go through the judicial process and give them greater opportunities to represent their interests. Moreover, there will be enhancements to: first response service delivery, which is provided when an individual is victimized; court-based services, which include giving individuals the opportunity to present victim impact statements, supporting children who have been victimized and other similar measures; services for victims of offenders under federal jurisdiction, to assist them financially in travelling to Parole Board of Canada (PBC)hearings or to aid those who require support persons to accompany them. As well, new staff positions will be created to provide services to victims on a full-time basis; and assistance for those currently underserved by existing programs, including victims in the North, as well as Canadians victimized abroad.

Specifically, the PBC will be getting close to $.5 million per year to implement new measures to enhance communications with victims and ensure consistency and quality in service delivery. Resources will support three main aspects: improving information sharing with increased outreach and enhancing access to information through improvements to the PBC's website; improving participation for victims by providing interpretation services in the official language of their choice at parole hearings and acquiring voice amplification systems for hearing rooms to allow victims to hear clearly; and training of PBC staff to ensure consistent and quality service delivery to victims.

The Board gives a high priority to victims and this funding will assist the Board in improving the information and assistance that it provides to them.

LEGISTLATIVE AND POLICY CONTEXT8

As part of its commitment to tackle crime, the Government has introduced eight new bills since spring 2006, which will result in legislative reforms to provide for tougher laws and sentences for violent and repeat offenders, particularly those involved in weapons-related crimes.

  1. The bail reforms bill (C-35) proposes to shift the onus to the person accused of serious gun crimes to explain why they should not be denied bail.


  2. The impaired driving bill (C-32) proposes to strengthen the laws against impaired drivers. The reforms will make it easier for police to investigate, and for prosecutors to prosecute, impaired driving cases. The new law will sharply increase fines and minimum jail terms for driving while impaired. These legislative reforms will also focus on drug-impaired driving.


  3. The dangerous offenders' bill (C-27) proposes reforms to the Criminal Code by toughening the dangerous offender provisions, and creating much stronger peace bond provisions to allow for longer and more aggressive supervision after a designated offender is released back into the community. A cornerstone of the reform is that an offender found guilty a third time of a designated violent or sexual offence must prove that he or she does not qualify as a dangerous offender.


  4. The conditional sentencing bill (C-9) proposes to amend the Criminal Code on conditional sentencing, so that people who commit serious and violent crimes will serve their time behind bars. Conditional sentences such as house arrest are sentences of imprisonment that may be served in the community, provided several conditions are met. Under this proposed reform, conditional sentences will be prohibited for offences prosecuted by indictment that carry a maximum sentence of 10 years or more.


  5. The mandatory minimum penalties bill (C-10) proposes to establish longer minimum prison sentences for individuals who use firearms to commit crimes. Under this proposed reform of the Criminal Code, if an offence is gang-related, or if a restricted or prohibited firearm such as a handgun is used, the minimum penalty will be five years on a first offence, seven years if the accused has one prior conviction involving the use of a firearm to commit an offence, and ten years if the accused has more than one prior conviction for using a firearm to commit an offence. Other firearm-related offences will also be subject to higher minimum penalties of three years on a first offence and five years if the accused has a serious prior firearm-related conviction. Bill C-10 adds two new offences to the Criminal Code, one for breaking and entering to steal a firearm and the other for robbery to steal a firearm.


  6. The DNA Data Bank Bill (C-18) proposes to strengthen the national DNA Data Bank by introducing a series of technical amendments to help implement earlier changes to the law, which were endorsed by Parliament in May 2005. The new legislative changes will make it an offence to fail to appear for DNA sampling. Attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murder will also be added to the list of offences covered by the retroactive provisions (which apply to offenders convicted of a single murder, sexual offence or manslaughter prior to June 30, 2000 ). In addition, the reforms will ensure information provided by the Data Bank could be used to investigate all criminal offences.


  7. The Street Racing Bill (C-19) proposes a new street racing offence and maximum penalties for dangerous driving (no bodily harm or death), dangerous driving causing bodily harm, dangerous driving causing death, criminal negligence causing bodily harm, and criminal negligence causing death. In addition, t his new offence will include escalating mandatory driving prohibitions for people convicted of street racing. The period of driving prohibition will be in addition to the offender's prison sentence.


  8. The age of protection Bill (C-22) rises the age of consent to sexual activity from 14 to 16 years. This legislation targets those who prey sexually upon children.


In addition, the government also plans to repeal the "faint hope" clause to ensure that murderers serving a life sentence indeed serve the first 25 years in prison.

The Government's legislative reform proposals for toughening laws as well as sentences will have a significant impact on the PBC as new offences and longer sentences will increase the offender population and may introduce in the federal correctional system individuals who would have previously been under provincial responsibility. This will add to the high workload volumes that the Board already deals with.

DIVERSITY:9

Canada is a multicultural society whose ethno-cultural composition has been shaped over time by different waves of immigrants and their descendents, as well as by the Aboriginal peoples of the country. Each new wave of immigrants has added to its diversity.

As of January 1, 2005, Canada's population was estimated at 32,107,000, an increase of 301,300 compared to the same date the previous year. The growth rate was 9.3 per thousand down slightly from the rates observed in the previous four years.

However, this growth was the second highest among G8 countries, exceeded only by that of the United States. It was almost nearly double the average rate for the European G8 countries.

Approximately two-thirds of Canada's growth was due to migratory increase, a situation that has been observed for a number of years. This is something that distinguishes Canada from the United States, since most of that country's growth is due to natural increase.

During the past century, Canada has welcomed more that 13.4 million immigrants, the largest number having arrived during the 1990s. According to the 2001 Census, 18.4% of the population was born outside Canada, the highest proportion in 70 years. The sources of immigrants to Canada have also changed in recent decades with increasing numbers coming from non-European countries. These immigrants and their children are adding to the ethno-cultural make-up of Canada's population, making it one of the most ethnically diverse nations in the world.

The diversity of the federal offender population mirrors the increased diversity of the Canadian population. In 1993/94, 7% of the offender population had self-identified as a visible minority, whereas in 2006/07, the proportion had risen to 14%.

The PBC faces a number of challenges with respect to the evolving ethno-cultural composition of the Canadian population as well as the offender population. The Board must ensure that its composition remains representative of the communities it serves and that policies, training and decision tools respect issues of diversity and build understanding of factors associated with risk and public safety for different groups of offenders and the communities to which they will return.

AGEING:10

Throughout most of the twentieth century, a fairly small proportion of the Canadian population was comprised of persons aged 65 or older. In the 1920s and 1930s, seniors accounted for about 5% of the population, while in the 1950s and 1960s they accounted for less that 8%. High fertility rates, low life expectancy and a small population base comprised of many non-elderly immigrants contributed to this profile.

The situation is far different today. Low fertility rates, longer life expectancy and the effects of the baby boom generation are among the factors contributing to the ageing of the population. Between 1981 and 2005, the number of seniors in Canada increased from 2.4 million to 4.2 million and their share of the total population increased from 9.6% to 13.1%. Consequently, older age groups are more and more represented in the total Canadian population.

The ageing of the population will accelerate over the next three decades, particularly as individuals from the Baby Boom years of 1946 to 1965 begin turning age 65.

The number of seniors in Canada is projected to increase from 4.2 million to 9.8 million between 2005 and 2036, and seniors' share of the population is expected to almost double, increasing from 13.2% to 24.5%.

Consistent with Canada's demographics, there has been an increase in the number of older offenders within the offender population in recent years and this trend is expected to continue.

An older offender is defined as anyone 50 years of age and older. Research indicates that the ageing process for offenders is accelerated by approximately 10 years due to factors including socio-economic status, access to medical care and the lifestyle of most offenders. The older offender population on March 31, 2007 represented 21% of the total offender population. This proportion has increased from 11% in 1993/94.

Older offenders have needs that set them apart from the rest of the adult offender population. Their needs are in the areas of medical care, accessibility/mobility, adjustment to imprisonment, peer relationships, family relationships and conditional release. Failure, on the part of the correctional system, to address these specific needs and problems may impede the safe and timely reintegration of older offenders. As such, the Board must ensure that its policies, training and decision tools respect the issue of age and build greater understanding of the factors associated with the risk that older offenders pose to the community.

OFFENDER PROFILE:11

While the federal offender population is reflective of Canadian society in its ageing and ethno-cultural portrait, the profile has become much more diverse and complex than it was in the past. Offenders now have more extensive histories with the criminal justice system and are more likely to have served a previous federal or provincial sentence. Many are affiliated with gangs or organized crime. There are more offenders rated as maximum security and they are receiving shorter sentences. Aboriginal offenders continue to be disproportionately represented and generally assessed as higher risk and higher need. Mental health problems are also more prevalent and a significant proportion of offenders have substance abuse problems.

More specifically, research shows that for every 100 offenders: 78 have no high school diploma, 73 have unstable job histories, 80 are impulsive, and 80 have abused drugs or alcohol. While the proportion of the prevalence of substance abuse is 80% overall, it is 95% for Aboriginal men and 77% for women offenders. There is continued prevalence of learning disabilities among offenders, as well as offenders with a low functioning capacity. Furthermore, more than one out of ten men offenders and one out of five women offenders are identified at admission as presenting mental health problems. These proportions have risen since 1997 (from 7% to 12% for men offenders and from 13% to 21% for women offenders).

Offenders also have much poorer health compared to the general Canadian population with offenders being about thirty times more likely to have been infected with the Hepatitis C virus and ten times more likely to have been infected with HIV.

While the profile of the offender population in becoming more diverse and complex, there is limited time to prepare an increasing proportion of releases to the community because over 55% of all new men offender admissions (almost identical for new women and Aboriginal men offenders) are receiving sentences of less than three years. This is a 61% increase since 1997.

This increasingly complex offender profile represents a significant challenge for the correctional system to adapt to meet its needs, both in the institution and the community. To this end, the Board must ensure that it is continually updating its training and decision tools so that it has a clear understanding of the risk that these offenders pose to the community at large.

ORGANIZED CRIME AND PUBLIC VIEWS ON ORGANIZED CRIME:12

Organized Crime

Organized criminal activity in Canada is a multi-faceted problem that requires a broad-based, integrated approach by the country's law enforcement agencies and criminal justice system. The pervasive nature of organized crime (OC) in legitimate global and domestic commercial markets has a widespread impact on all areas of Canadian society. Areas such as healthcare, safety systems, and financial security are at the forefront of those adversely impacted by the far reaches of organized crime. Economic crimes committed by OC groups cost Canadians billions of dollars every year. The impacts of organized crime also go far beyond monetary effects. Violence, intimidation, and corruption are mainstays of many organized groups. They affect public confidence in fundamental sources of security such as their homes, neighbourhoods and communities.

In the last five years, the Government of Canada has taken a number of measures on the domestic and international fronts to strengthen the ability of law enforcement to pursue criminal organizations and to strengthen border security. Consequently, c hanges to the legislation have resulted, for example, in requirements for CSC to manage more offenders associated with gangs and organized crime (an increase from 12% to 16% of the incarcerated population). As of March 31, 2007, there were 56 separate gangs or gang types in the institutions and in the community. Aboriginal, Biker and Street Gangs were the most prevalent in institutions with Bikers, Aboriginal and Traditional Organized Crime Gangs being the largest groups in the community.

The presence of offenders, who are associates or members of criminal organizations pose a challenge for the correctional system including: intimidation, extortion, and violence within the incarcerated and supervised community populations; drug distribution within the institutions; recruitment of new members; and intimidation and corruption of staff.

Public views on Organized Crime

There are a limited number of recent studies which assess Canadians' views about the phenomenon of organized crime (OC); however there is a high degree of consistency in terms of the results of these studies. The following are some of the findings of public opinion research:

  1. Drug trafficking and biker gangs constitute the overriding image or impression that most members of the public associate with OC.


  2. Canadians' believe that OC is serious and recognize that it is present in their community. They are familiar with news stories about OC groups.


  3. While OC is viewed as a serious issue and growing, there is a dichotomy between the perceived seriousness of OC and the likelihood of being victimized. Participants tend to believe that it does not affect them personally because they aren't involved in any illegal activities. Moreover, the public does not necessarily think that they should be involved in the fight against organized crime.


The fight against OC has been a national priority since September 2000 when federal, provincial and territorial Ministers responsible for justice agreed that all levels of government must address OC on a number of fronts. In this context, the views of the public about organized crime are essential to government, law enforcement officials and agencies as well as policy makers as they facilitate the development of strategies to better inform the general public about the dangers of OC and what is being done to respond to these problems.

The Board, for its part, must ensure that training and decision tools build understanding of the factors associated with the risk that offenders associated to or members of criminal organizations pose to the community at large. The Board must also provide the community with clear and accurate information about the effectiveness of conditional release and the processes which monitor the performance of offenders associated with organized crime.

WOMEN AND THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM:13

Women are much less likely than men to be perpetrators of crime. This difference is notable when comparing the relative sizes of the male and female federal offender populations. Women accounted for just over 5% of all federal offenders on March 31, 2007 and proportionally more were newcomers to the federal correctional system.

On March 31, 2007, 84% of federally sentenced women were serving their first federal sentence compared with 66% of federally sentenced men. In addition, as a result of the nature of their offences, women offenders tend to receive shorter sentences than their male counterparts. On March 31, 2007, 38% of federally sentenced women were serving sentences of less than three years on their first federal sentence compared with 27% of federally sentenced men. While 17% of federally sentenced women were serving a first sentence for murder compared to 22% of male offenders, 31% were serving a first federal sentence for a drug offence compared to 17% of male offenders.

Some of the characteristics of the female population are shared with men, while others are not. For example, two thirds of federally sentenced women are mothers and they are more likely than male offenders to have primary childcare responsibilities. Both male and female offenders tend to have histories of childhood trauma and abuse. In addition, federally sentenced women and men tend to have lower educational attainment than the Canadian adult population as a whole. Female offenders, however, have much lower employment rates than male offenders. In 1996, 80% of the women serving time in a federal facility were unemployed at the time of admissions compared to 54% of male offenders.

Drug and alcohol addictions are widespread among federally sentenced offenders. Almost 70% of male and female offenders have problems with alcohol or drug abuse. However, drugs and alcohol tend to figure more prominently in the lives and criminal offences of federally sentenced women, for whom income-generating crimes such as fraud, shoplifting, prostitution and robbery are often perpetrated to support their addictions.

Some of the most significant differences between female and male federal offenders are the prevalence of diagnosed mental illness, self-abuse and suicide attempts. Federally sentenced women are more likely than men to take part in self-destructive behaviours such as slashing and cutting.

In addition, the federal female offender population is very heterogeneous in terms of ethno-cultural background. On March 31, 2007, 57% of the federal female offender population were White, 25% Aboriginal, 8% Black and 3% Asian compared to the male population which was 69% White, 17% Aboriginal, 6% Black and 3% Asian.

Given the differences between female and male offenders, the challenge for the correctional system is to ensure that women's needs and risks are met through supportive environments and a wide variety of educational, vocational and personal development programs that are gender appropriate. The Board, in particular, must ensure that its policies, training and decision tools are respective of gender and build understanding of the factors associated with the risk that female offenders pose to the communities to which they will return.

ABORIGINAL PEOPLES:14

According to the 2001 census, 976,305 people, 3.3% of the population of Canada identified themselves as an Aboriginal person. North American Indian (62%) constituted the largest group of Aboriginal people, followed by Métis (30%) and Inuit (5%). The remaining 3% were either persons who identified with more than one Aboriginal group or registered Indians or band members who did not identify as Aboriginal.

The Aboriginal population in Canada is much younger than the non-Aboriginal population. According to the 2001 census, the median age of Aboriginal people was 24.7 years compared to 37.7 years for the non-Aboriginal population.

More specifically, according to the 2001 census:

  • 33% of Aboriginal people were under 15 compared with 19% of the Canadian population;


  • 17% of the Aboriginal population was aged 15 to 24 compared with 13% of the Canadian population; and


  • Seniors made up only 4% of the Aboriginal population compared with 13% of the Canadian population.

The average age of the Aboriginal population has increased but is still below that of the rest of the Canadian population. The increase in the average age is, in large part, due to a gradually improving life expectancy and to the declining birth rate among Aboriginal peoples. Still, the Aboriginal birth rate is about 1.5 times that of the non-Aboriginal rate.

Given the number of young children in the Aboriginal population and the higher birth rate, large increases in the Aboriginal population among those 15 to 24 years of age are predicted to occur within the next decade. Since persons up to 35 years of age are seen to be the most "at risk" for criminal activity, the large numbers of Aboriginal youth may have implications for the criminal justice system for many years.

Not only is the Aboriginal population younger and increasing at a higher rate than the population as a whole, but there appears to be a growing concentration of this population in the core of larger cities. This urban movement may increase the likelihood of contact with the criminal justice system because of the social, political, economical, educational and racist implications of urban living. This may, in part, account for the high crime rate of urban Aboriginal people and the formation of Aboriginal gangs.

Although Aboriginal people make up only 3.3% of the Canadian population, they accounted for 17.0% of the federal offender population on March 31, 2007. At that time, 68% of federal Aboriginal offenders were North American Indian, 28% were Métis and 4% were Inuit.

As a group, Aboriginal offenders tend to be younger, are more likely to be incarcerated for sexual offences and other violent crimes than non-Aboriginal offenders, have much higher needs (relating to employment and education, for example) and have had more extensive involvement with the criminal justice system as youths.

Research on male Aboriginal offenders suggests that childhood deprivation is commonplace among this group, including early drug and alcohol use, physical and sexual abuse and severe poverty. Many Aboriginal communities are marked by violence, family instability, alcohol abuse and low levels of education. The marginal socio-economical positions of many of Canada's Aboriginal peoples, coupled with their loss of culture and community, have contributed to their criminal behaviour and to their difficulty in making a fresh start.

While the over-representation of Aboriginal people in the criminal justice system has reached crisis proportions, the Board, as a small agency at the back-end of the justice system, has limited capacity to influence this over-representation. The Board, for its part, must continue to ensure that policies respect and are responsive to the special needs of Aboriginal offenders. In addition, the Board is expanding its cultural hearing models and continues to maintain a workforce profile that includes appropriate Aboriginal representation.

In addition, the Board, along with CSC, must provide Aboriginal communities with the opportunity for active involvement in the integration of Aboriginal offenders.

RESTORATIVE JUSTICE:15

Restorative justice can be described as a way of dealing with the harm caused by an offence by involving the victim(s), the offender and the community that has been affected. It is a balanced community based approach that deals with criminal activity as an offence against human relationships and secondarily as a violation of the law. It recognizes that once an offence has occurred, there is an opportunity to acknowledge the injustice it caused and to restore equity so that participants feel safer, more respected and more empowered.

Restorative justice is characterized by principles of inclusiveness, reparation, accountability, community involvement, holism, equality and sensitivity. In addition, the idea that crime creates obligations is central to the restorative approach to justice. Restorative justice sees the offender as having an obligation to provide reparation to the victim and the community and the community has an obligation to define the standards of acceptable conduct and to determine the best ways to repair the damage caused by crime.

The restorative justice approach appears to be gaining acceptance not only among criminal justice practitioners but also among the general public. Public opinion research revealed increased acceptance of reparation, restitution and mediation approaches for certain offenders provided that victims agree to the use of such approaches. In addition, evaluations of restorative justice programs typically find high levels of satisfaction from victims and offenders with the process.

To date, the majority of restorative justice programs involve low-risk offenders, who have committed relatively minor crimes. Few program target adult offenders, especially offenders who have committed serious offences. Given that the application of restorative justice is still relatively new, practitioners and program designers are actively exploring how the various restorative justice models can be applied with different types of offenders, varying types of crimes and at various stages of the criminal justice process.

There may be potential to incorporate a restorative approach into the parole process through a marriage of restorative justice with offender rehabilitation in order to maximize public safety.

WORKLOADS AND FISCAL CONSTRAINT:16

The extreme fiscal constraint of the mid-1990s has now given way to an era of greater choice. Fiscal projections for the early years of the new century make it possible for the Government to strike a balance between investing in service improvement, maintaining the integrity of existing programs and retiring public debt.

Learning from the past however, the Government is committed to the continuous examination of its expenditures to ensure responsible spending in terms of results for the taxpayer's dollar.

NPB Reference Levels

Source: PBC Main Estimates

Note: Figures include contributions to employee benefit plans

The decade of fiscal restraint in the 1990s resulted in very limited resource flexibility for the Board. Rigorous priority setting, innovation and productivity improvements enabled the Board to manage these resource challenges. Things have not changed, in recent years, as the Board continues to experience heavy workload demands (e.g. parole reviews, pardon applications) and increasingly complex decision processes. For example, the Board faces complex and growing workloads related to offenders with histories of violence and offenders subject to long-term supervision orders, growing involvement with victims of crime and growing expectations for public involvement in conditional release processes.

At the same time, the Board must also respond to numerous management improvement initiatives such as modernization of human resource management, Program Activity Architecture and the Management Accountability Framework. Collectively, these pressures create significant challenges demanding careful planning and priority setting.

Prior to 2005, the Board has been successful in obtaining additional resources for specific initiatives such as firearms legislation, Effective Corrections and Citizen Engagement and Integrated Justice. These resources provided the capacity to implement specific initiatives but did not address resource challenges. As a result, the Board provided a comprehensive business case for its resource requirements for sustaining its programs to TBS in 2004/05.

The business case demonstrated that the Board had very little resource flexibility for resource allocation under the existing parameters, given the statutory nature of its responsibilities, its heavy workloads and its limited budgetary levels. While TBS has provided the Board with temporary resource relief in the past, the business case presented by the Board resulted in a permanent solution in 2004/05. This provided a more stable operating environment for the Board and will enable the Board to maintain sustainability in future years.

Table 2

Source: PBC Financial Services Division
EXPENDITURES by STRATEGIC OUTCOME17 ($ Millions)
Year Conditional Release Decisions Conditional Release Openness and Accountability Pardon Decisions and Clemency Recommendations PBC Total
2002/03 $28.6 78% $5.0 14% $2.9 8% $36.5
2003/04 $27.9 78% $5.0 14% $2.7 8% $35.6
2004/05 $30.9 75% $5.3 13% $4.9 12% $41.1
2005/06 $32.7 76% $5.8 14% $4.3 10% $42.8
2006/07 $33.9 78% $6.7 15% $2.8 6% $43.4

For 2006/07, the total funds available for the PBC amounted to $45.3 millions. Against this total the Board expended $43.4 millions or almost 96% of the funds available.

The Board applies its resources to three strategic outcomes – quality conditional release decisions, open and accountable conditional release decision processes and quality pardon decisions and clemency recommendations. The PBC also uses its resources for essential corporate management activities. Conditional release decision-making is the most resource intensive area, accounting for almost eight of every ten dollars expended by the Board.

The Board also receives revenues as a result of the $50 user fee for the processing of pardon applications. For every fee received, the split is as follows: $15 to the RCMP and $35 to the Board. In 2006/07, the user fee generated total revenues of $970,000. The PBC portion was $670,000 but the Board is limited to a maximum of $410,000 per year.

The Board's total expenditures increased by $600,000 in 2006/07. Expenditures for the conditional release decisions activity increased by $1,200,000, those for the open and accountable conditional release decision processes activity increased by $900,000, while those for the pardon decisions and clemency recommendations activity decreased by $1,500,000.

PUBLIC SAFETY INTEROPERABILITY:18

Interoperability means people, processes and systems working in a collaborative fashion to share information. Within the public safety and security community, it means ensuring that agencies and government organizations can share the right information at the right time to keep Canadians safe. Achieving interoperability will enable government departments to more effectively and efficiently share and use information to fulfill their programs mandates.

Integrating justice information in Canada's criminal justice system is not a simple undertaking. It involves many partners (each with its own mandate to fulfill), new issues that emerge regularly and a range of services that cover every component of the justice system. Therefore, it requires a sophisticated approach that is in keeping with the complexity of its subject matter.

The Government of Canada, through its Public Safety Interoperability Directorate, is pursuing the four complementary tracks of technology, policy, standard and common tools and partnerships in order to achieve a vision for public safety interoperability which will result in better decisions, enhanced public safety, increased officer safety and increased public confidence.

From the perspective of members of the criminal justice system, information on offenders is currently dispersed among numerous jurisdictions and is not always shared. This creates a number of difficulties for personnel working in the correctional system tasked with making decisions in the area of risk assessment and risk management.

The successful application of risk assessment and risk management tools in corrections is considered to be fundamentally dependent on the creation of an effective infrastructure for information exchange among all criminal justice agencies that deal with offenders. With better information on offenders at their disposal, the police, CSC and the Board will be more equipped to make informed decisions. In turn, this may increase the level of public confidence in the criminal justice system.

HUMAN RESOURCE MANAGEMENT:19

The 2001 Speech from the Throne indicated that the Government was committed to reforms to ensure that the Public Service of Canada was innovative, dynamic and reflective of the diversity of the country-able to attract and develop the talent needed to serve Canadians in the 21 st century.

Several challenges currently face the Public Service. Chief among these is demographics; the public sector workforce is ageing and many employees and managers are approaching retirement eligibility. The government is, therefore, faced with the necessity of recruiting, hiring and retaining committed and talented people in large numbers. It must also ensure effective and efficient knowledge transfer from one generation of public service employees to the next.

Moreover, in order to provide a high quality of service, government employees, both newly recruited and longer-term, must reflect the diverse cultures and perspectives of the public they serve. Employees must have access to continuous learning and development opportunities to allow them to adapt to today's ever-changing world in creative and innovative ways.

To combat these challenges, the Government announced plans in December of 2003 to modernize human resources management of the public service to ensure that Canada has a modern world-class federal public service that effectively carries out the government's agenda and meets the evolving needs of the public it serves.

In order to bring the Public Service of Canada in line with what Canadians expect and deserve in terms of accountability, professionalism, innovation and leadership, a wide range of actions are being taken. These actions will ensure a modern public service that:

  • is guided by ethical values;


  • safeguards the public interest;


  • provides a quality work environment;


  • respects the Official Languages policies;


  • reflects the social fabric and rich diversity of Canada's population; and


  • is able to attract and retain the best of the best.

The implementation of the Public Service Modernization Act (PSMA) that was passed in November 2003, was the first major revamp of the public service in more than 35 years and it has been implemented in stages since that time. It is expected that it will be fully implemented by the end of 2007. The PSMA was designed to modernize staffing; foster genuinely collaborative labour-management relations; clarify roles and strengthen roles and accountability for deputy heads and their managers; and provide a more integrated approach to learning development for employees at all levels.

To complement the legislated changes, the classification system was reformed to better capture work currently performed and information systems were reviewed with a view to streamlining them and reducing the burden of administration on departments and agencies. Leadership development activities and core learning programs have been designed to promote leadership abilities throughout the public service, from the first level to deputy heads. Work relating to the Employment Equity Act continues so that the government, like any modern organization, is able to harvest the skills and expertise available in the diverse population of Canada.

Advancing the Official Languages Action Plan is another essential component as it promotes service to Canadians in the language of their choice, enables employees in bilingual regions to work in their chosen language and ensures equal participation of both English and French-speaking Canadians in the public service.

The same challenges that are facing the Public Service as a whole have the potential to be devastating for the Board. As more than 35% of Board staff (many of whom occupy senior positions in the regions and at national office) are 50 years or older, there is a potential for a significant number of departures in the coming years.

As a small organization with limited opportunities for career development and promotion, the Board faces constant challenges in recruiting employees for key positions. This will also hamper the Board in ensuring that there is an efficient and effective knowledge transfer from one generation to another. In addition, the Board is committed to maintaining a work force profile that is representative of the diverse cultures of Canada.

The following section provides information on the Board's composition of staff and Board members.

Table 3

Source: PBC Human Resources Division
Parole Board of Canada (PBC)STAFF COMPLEMENT (As of April 30, 2007)
Region Females Males Total Staff Abor. Visible Minority Disabled Official Language Profile Bilingual
English French # %
National Office 86 38 124 4 7 3 53 71 91 73
Atlantic 32 6 38 1 1 1 22 16 21 55
Quebec 46 14 60 2 6 1 4 56 41 68
Ontario 51 8 59 - - 4 55 4 6 10
Prairies 50 12 62 7 3 2 61 1 5 8
Pacific 32 12 44 3 4 2 41 3 6 14
Canada 297 90 387 17 21 13 236 151 170 44
Percent 77% 23% 100% 4% 5% 3% 61% 39%

As of April 30, 2007, 77% of Parole Board of Canada (PBC)staff were female and 23% were male. The highest proportion of female to male staff was in the Ontario region where females accounted for 86% of all staff, while the lowest proportion was 69% in the National Office. The first official language of 61% of Board staff was English and 39% was French. As well, 44% of the Board's staff were bilingual (staff able to work in both French and English).

The Board also tracks staffing from minority groups to ensure that its work force is representative of the Canadian population. The Board is committed to the principles outlined in the Government's Action Plan of the Task Force on Participation of Visible Minorities in the Federal Public Service. The Board's visible minority staff complement decreased by 4 to 21 this year and accounts for 5.4% of the work force.

The Aboriginal staff complement increased by 6, to 17, in 2006/07, while the number of staff with disabilities increased by 2 to 13. As of April 30, 2007 , 4.4% of Board staff were Aboriginal and 3.4% had a disability.

Based on workforce targets identified by Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) (from the 2001 Census information), the Board is over-represented for Aboriginal persons (TBS target 2.5%). However, the Board is under-represented for persons with disabilities (TBS target 3.6%) and visible minority persons (TBS target 10.4%).

Table 4

Source: PBC Chairman's Office
and Regional Offices
Parole Board of Canada (PBC)MEMBER COMPLEMENT (As of May 22, 2007)
Region Female Male Total Board Members Aboriginal Visible Minority Official Language Profile Bilingual
English French # %
National Office 2 4 6 0 0 1 5 6 100
Atlantic 4 8 12 0 0 8 4 5 42
Quebec 5 8 13 0 1 0 13 12 92
Ontario 7 8 15 1 0 10 5 6 40
Prairies 11 14 25 5 0 22 3 4 16
Pacific 6 7 13 3 2 11 2 4 31
Canada 35 49 84 9 3 52 32 37 44
Percent 42% 58% 100% 11% 4% 62% 38%

As of May 22, 2007, the Parole Board of Canada (PBC)had a total of 84 members (41 full-time and 43 part-time), with 58% being male and 42% being female. The Board had 9 Aboriginal members (11%), with five members working in the Prairie region and three in the Pacific (the regions with the largest Aboriginal populations) and one in the Ontario region. The Board also had three members from visible minority communities, two in the Pacific region and one in the Quebec region.

The Board also tracks language, education and experience of Board members to ensure that it has the range of skills needed to make quality conditional release decisions. As of May 22, 2007 , the first official language of 62% of Board members was English and 38% was French, while 44% of Board members were bilingual.

Ninety-two (92%) of Board members have a university education, 5% have a college education and 4% have a secondary school education. As well, 44% of Board members have experience in corrections and 83% have criminal justice experience.

Board members come from different professional backgrounds. Board members have backgrounds as criminologists, lawyers, parole officers, members of police services, probation officers, members of provincial parole boards, psychologists, social workers, teachers, wardens, counsellors, therapists, health professionals and as members of private industry, Parliament, the Canadian Forces and the clergy.

 

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1 Speech from the Throne, Office of the Prime Minister, April 4, 2006
Priorities, Office of the Prime Minister Website, March 2007
Building a stronger, safer, better Canada, Office of the Prime Minister Website, News Releases : February 6, 2007
Budget 2007: A Stronger, Safer, Better Canada, Department of Finance Canada, March 19, 2007

2 Crime Statistics in Canada 2006, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, July 2007

3 Other Criminal Code crimes include mischief, prostitution, arson, bail violations, disturbing the peace, etc.

4 Adult Criminal Court Statistics, 2003/04: Juristat, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, December 2004. This report is the most recent version available.

5 Seven provinces and one territory have provided data to the Adult Criminal Court Survey since 1994/95. The jurisdictions are Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, Quebec (excluding 87 municipal courts), Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and Yukon. These jurisdictions represent approximately 80% of the national adult criminal court caseload.

6 Fear of Crime and Attitudes to Criminal Justice in Canada: A Review of Recent Trends, Julian V. Roberts, Department of Criminology, University of Ottawa, November 2001
Public Confidence in Criminal Justice: A Review of Recent Trends 2004-05, Julian V. Roberts, Department of Criminology, University of Ottawa, November 2004
General Social Survey on Victimization, Cycle 18: An Overview of Findings,Social and Aboriginal Statistics Division, Statistics Canada, 2005
The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, June 1999

7 Fear of Crime and Attitudes to Criminal Justice in Canada: A Review of Recent Trends, Julian V. Roberts, Department of Criminology, University of Ottawa, November 2001
The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, June 1999
Canada's New Government Announces Federal Victims Ombudsman and New Funding for Victims of Crime, Department of Justice Website, Newsroom, March 16, 2007
New Funding Package for Victims of Crime Backgrounder, Department of Justice website, Newsroom, March 16, 2007

8 Stronger Laws, Office of the Prime Minister Website on Tackling Crime, March 2007
Conditional Sentencing Reform Bill Backgrounder, Department of Justice website, Newsroom, May 2006
Mandatory Minimum Penalties Backgrounder, Department of Justice website, Newsroom, May 2006

9 Canada's Ethnocultural Portrait: The Changing Mosaic, 2001 Census, Census Operations Division, Statistics Canada
The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, June 1999
Ethnic Diversity Survey: Portrait of a Multicultural Society, Statistics Canada, September 2003
Report on the Demographic Situation in Canada 2003 and 2004, Statistics Canada, June 2006
Canada's Ethno-cultural Composition in 2017: Exploring the Emerging Challenges Facing Canada with respect to its Visible Minority Population in Selected Policy Areas, Canadian Heritage, March 2005

10 Profile of the Canadian Population by Age and Sex: Canada Ages, 2001 Census, Statistics Canada
Portfolio Environmental Scan 2002, Strategic Policy, Strategic Operation Directorate, Solicitor General
Issues and Challenges Facing CSC, Speaker's Binder Section 6.5, Correctional Service of Canada, April 2005
A Portrait of Seniors in Canada 2006, Statistics Canada, February 2007

11 Report on Plans and Priorities 2006-2007, Correctional Service of Canada

12 The Changing Federal Offender Population: Profiles and Forecasts, Research Branch, Policy, Planning and Co-ordination, Correctional Service of Canada, July 2004
Organized Crime RCMP Fact Sheets, RCMP Website, March 2007
Responding to Organized Crime in Canada: The Role of Media and Social Marketing Campaigns, Tullio Caputo, Ph.D & Michelle Vallée, Carleton Univeristy for the RCMP, 2005
Working Together to Combat Organized Crime: A Public Report on Actions under the National Agenda to Combat Organized Crime, Public Safety Canada, 2006

13 Women in Canada, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, Statistics Canada, June 2001
Protecting Their Rights:, A Systematic Review of Human Rights in Correctional Services for Federally Sentenced Women, Canadian Human Rights Commission, March 2004

14 Aboriginal Peoples of Canada: A Demographic Profile, 2001 Census, Census Operations Division, Statistics Canada
Portfolio Environmental Scan 2002, Strategic Policy, Strategic Operation Directorate, Solicitor General
The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, June 1999
Issues and Challenges Facing CSC, Speaker's Binder Section 6.7, Correctional Service of Canada, April 2005

15 Corrections in the 21 st Century, Strategic Planning and Integrated Justice Directorate, Corrections Directorate, Correctional Service of Canada, March 2000.
Restorative justice, Restorative justice in cases of serious crime, Restorative justice and offender treatment; Research Summaries, Public Safety Canada, July 2005, November 2006.

16 Results for Canadians: A Management Framework for the Government of Canada, Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
2006-2007 Estimates, Part III – Report on Plans and Priorities, National Parole Board, 2006

17 For fiscal year 2005/06, Receiver General and Treasury Board Secretariat reporting requirements were changed from business line to strategic outcome. This table has thus been converted to reflect this new requirement.

18 Portfolio Environmental Scan 2002, Strategic Policy, Strategic Operation Directorate, Solicitor General.
Corrections in the 21st Century, Strategic Planning and Integrated Justice Directorate, Corrections Directorate, Correctional Service of Canada, March 2000
The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, 1999
Public Safety Interoperability, Public Safety Canada, October 2005
Our Approach, Public Safety Canada, November 2004

19 The Parole Board of Canada (PBC)Vision and Strategic Plan, 2000 and Beyond, National Parole Board, 1999