Welcome to my Crime and Justice blog! I am a 19 year old criminal justice student at the University of Winnipeg. I advocate for prisoners' rights, human rights, equality and criminal justice/prison system reforms.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

March in Winnipeg protests jail overcrowding

WINNIPEG — Hundreds of provincial employees are expected to take to the streets of downtown Winnipeg today to protest overcrowding at provincial jails.
The protesters are scheduled to begin their march at 2:15 p.m. at the Winnipeg Convention Centre on York Avenue. They’ll march west on St. Mary Avenue to Memorial Boulevard, and south on Memorial to the steps of the Manitoba Legislature.
In addition to overcrowding, the employees are also protesting with what they say are backlogs in dealing with accused offenders on remand, and growing caseloads for probation workers.
"These issues are getting worse, not better," the Manitoba Government and General Employees’ Union said in a written statement. "And the ripple effect on other government employees working with victims of crime and their families, at-risk youth, those involved in managing the judicial system, and those who provide protective services to children is simply unmanageable."

I wish I could participate in this protest! Jail overcrowding is a huge problem. To reduce overcrowding, we need to grant more people bail, abolish mandatory minimum sentences, reinstate double time credit and less reliance on prison and more on community alternatives.

Locking more people away for longer periods creates unsafe environments for staff and inmates and unsafe communities when they are released, as prison increases rates of re-offending and decreases the likelihood of successful reintegration.  

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