COVID-19 update for correctional employees: January 21, 2022

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

The last 22 months have been challenging, both on a personal and professional level, for many of us. I am truly grateful for your dedication and commitment. Thank you

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

This past Monday, January 17, was Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The day commemorates Dr. King’s achievements as a leader of nonviolent protests against racial discrimination during the 1960’s American Civil Rights Movement that successfully led to profound changes in the United States’ discriminatory laws against Black people. Nearly 60 years later, Dr. King is recognized for being a champion of all human rights. Take a moment to think about how you can champion the rights of others in your everyday interactions.

International Day of Education

In celebration of the role of education for peace and development, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed January 24 as International Day of Education. As you know, CSC offers education programs that focus on offenders’ personal development in improving literacy, academic, and personal skills. Education programming for offenders reduces the risk of reoffending and increases the potential for successful reintegration. I would like to recognize the valuable work of our teachers across the country and for their efforts in encouraging offenders to pursue their education.

Bell Let’s Talk Day

I cannot emphasize enough the importance of taking care of our mental health. The pandemic continues to have an impact on everyone’s mental health and it is important to make efforts to eliminate the stigma associated with mental injuries. Bell Let’s Talk Day on Wednesday, January 26, aims to get people talking about mental health to help break down barriers. Peer support is one important way we can all make a difference, in addition to following five simple ways:

  1. language matters,
  2. educate yourself,
  3. be kind,
  4. listen and ask,
  5. talk about it. 

In an airplane we are asked to put our oxygen mask on before helping others.

I want to recognize that during the pandemic, especially this current wave, many of our operational staff across the country have worked extra time or helped to fill in for colleagues who have had to self-isolate. You are always there to help others and ensure that we, as a team, can continue to fulfill our mandate. While I am so thankful for your efforts and commitment, I want you to remember to think of yourself and take time to maintain your wellness. And reach out if you need extra support. When we help ourselves, we also help those around us as well.

I invite you to learn more about how you can help the people close to you, such as your peers, to navigate the psychological impacts of COVID-19 at work and at home. As well, check out our Mental Health Continuum Model, which illustrates signs of both good and poor mental health, and also gives actions you can take, depending on where you see yourself on the continuum.

 Family Literacy Day

January 27 is Family Literacy Day. CSC is proud to work with committed organizations, such as the Canadian Families and Corrections Network (CFCN) to provide inmates with letter-writing kits to help them stay connected with loved ones. These supportive community relationships play an important role in offender reintegration and rehabilitation.

I encourage you to read about our partnership with CFCN in Let’s Talk Express:

If you would like to learn more about how CFCN’s programs, services and projects, I invite you to read more on their website:

I continue to be impressed with the incredible work you are doing as we continue to adapt during the pandemic. Thank you for your commitment and hard work.

“Every job is a self-portrait of the person who did it. Autograph your work with excellence.”

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