COVID-19 update for correctional employees: December 11, 2020

This content is a message to Correctional Service Canada (CSC) staff from CSC's Commissioner.

I want to start this week's message by thanking all of you for your hard work. I appreciate your commitment to the Correctional Service Canada (CSC) and how you have gone above and beyond to ensure the wellbeing of those in our care as well as each other at our workplaces across the country.

COVID update

Cases of COVID-19 are on the rise in many parts of the country. I know everyone wants to enjoy their usual holiday celebrations, but please keep in mind that this is not a usual year. As we get closer to the holidays, please be vigilant about keeping a small social bubble and following local public health directives. Wear your mask and wash your hands often. It is important to keep yourself and those you love healthy, so you can all enjoy the holiday season.

In terms of active COVID-19 cases among inmates, the situation is improving.  Currently, only Stony Mountain Institution (medium) in Manitoba has active cases with many having recovered.

We are starting to hear encouraging news about a vaccine for Canadians. More will come on this in the coming months as we know more about plans and the rollout, including for offenders in our care.

Bill C-15: An Act respecting the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

Late last week, the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, and the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, announced the introduction of:

Bill C-15 proposes to affirm the Declaration as a universal international human rights instrument with application in Canadian law. The Bill also provides a framework for its implementation by the Government of Canada. If passed by Parliament, the Bill would require the Government of Canada, in consultation and cooperation with Indigenous peoples, to take all measures necessary to ensure that the laws of Canada are consistent with the rights of Indigenous peoples set out in the Declaration, as well as to develop an action plan to achieve its objectives.


I want to thank you for your generous donations to this year's Government of Canada Workplace Charitable Campaign (GCWCC). The campaign ends next week on December 15, so you still have time to make a donation, if you have not already. It only takes a few minutes to make:

Every year, a GCWCC Appreciation Event is held in recognition of the federal public servants across the country who have worked hard to support the campaign. Although it may look at bit different, this year's Annual Awards ceremony is expected to take place and more information will soon be available. In the meantime, I encourage you to stay up-to-date by visiting:

CORCAN's Winter Highlight

I am delighted to announce that this year's:

Historically, CORCAN's Annual Winter Highlight was an in-person opportunity to shop at specific sites for products made by Indigenous offenders through the offender employment and employability program. Having the items available in a virtual space means all staff across Canada can find and purchase amazing gifts, just in time for the holidays. Please have a look!

Building a house and skills for the future

Congratulations to the residents at Okimaw Ohci Healing Lodge for completing construction of their first house through the CORCAN Indigenous Offender Employment Initiative. The women built the home at the healing lodge, then (with escorted temporary absences) they prepared the site at the Nekaneet First Nation for its arrival. The house was moved to its permanent location on November 30. Through hard work constructing this home, the residents built new skills and confidence that will help them upon release to the community.  This is amazing and a great way to give back to the community!

Report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women

Fifty years ago, women may not have had the opportunity to learn how to construct a house together.

The Report of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women in Canada, tabled in Parliament on December 7, 1970, helped open up infinite options to women. The report made 167 recommendations to address critical issues for women, such as:

Monday marked the 50th anniversary of this landmark report that paved the way for women to participate equally in all aspects of Canadian life.

Related, the year 2020 also marks the 30th anniversary of the Creating Choices report, which studied the federal correctional system for women. Based on its recommendations, the principles of:

have served as the driving force behind a number of advances and the approach to women's corrections.

Human Rights Day

December 10 was Human Rights Day, which draws attention to the importance of recognizing that everyone, regardless of:

is entitled to basic human rights, including being treated equally and with dignity. Take time to learn about:

Public Service Employee Survey

You probably saw the pop-up last week on your computer screen about the Public Service Employee Survey. Please take time to participate. The comments you provide will allow the federal public service to identify what it is doing well and what it could be doing better, so that it can improve workplace and management practices. This is your opportunity to have your say. It only takes 15 minutes, so please take the time to fill out the survey before January 22, 2021.

Departmental Results Report

On December 7, CSC's 2019–20 Departmental Results Report was tabled in Parliament. This annual report highlights CSC's performance during the past fiscal year, and reports to Canadians and Parliamentarians on the progress CSC is making in key areas of corrections, including:

The achievements of 2019–20 would not have been possible without the incredible efforts of all of you!  Thank you.  

Christmas Lights Across Canada

This year you can enjoy more than just the festive lights in your neighbourhood. From now to January 7, the capital city of each province and territory is uniquely lit up as part of:

You can see these lights and more in a virtual, dazzling cross-country celebration from December 17, 2020, to January 7, 2021, by IllumiNATION. Enjoy the virtual show's premiere on Thursday, December 17, at 8:00 p.m. (ET), hosted by Gregory Charles with performances by talented Canadians from across the country. You are invited to share the lights that illuminate your community by using the hashtag #ChristmasLightsAcrossCanada.

Thank you again for your ongoing dedication and hard work.

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