Follow-up Audit on Corrections in Nunavut—Department of Justice—Department of Justice did not address shortcomings in the delivery of correctional services
Follow-up Audit on Corrections in Nunavut—Department of JusticeDepartment of Justice did not address shortcomings in the delivery of correctional services
Ottawa, 9 September 2021—Today, the Office of the Auditor General of Canada provided the Legislative Assembly of Nunavut with the results of a follow-up audit that examined progress made by the Department of Justice on the recommendations from the Auditor General’s 2015 report on corrections in Nunavut.
The audit found that most of the issues surrounding rehabilitation and the operation of correctional facilities remained unresolved. The Department of Justice struggled to provide inmates with access to the range of programs and services needed to support their rehabilitation and eventual reintegration into the community. These included mental health services. The department has committed to take action to address these outstanding issues.
The Department of Justice adopted a new approach to segregation that is designed to keep inmates in segregation for the shortest time possible. Spending time in segregation can jeopardize an inmate’s mental and physical health. The audit found that the majority of segregation placements were for less than 2 days. However, staff were not provided with formal training or procedures on how to place and monitor each individual under this new approach to segregation.
The Corrections Division did not have a human resources plan to address recruitment and retention challenges. Consistently high vacancy rates in critical staff positions affected the department’s ability to manage correctional facilities and ensure the safety of inmates and staff.
“We noted progress in some areas, such as increased capacity to house male inmates; however, the capacity of the Nunavut Women’s Correctional Centre was inadequate for its needs,” said James McKenzie, the principal responsible for the audit. “Addressing the issues highlighted in the report will be important for the department to be able to deliver a safe and secure corrections system that supports successful reintegration of inmates into society.”
The 2021 Report of the Auditor General of Canada to the Nunavut Legislative Assembly—Follow-up Audit on Corrections in Nunavut—Department of Justice is available on the Office of the Auditor General of Canada’s website.
- 30 -
Please visit our Media Room for more information.