COVID-19 update for correctional employees: March 11, 2022

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

It was two years ago today that the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic. This had an enormous impact on all of us. It literally changed the way we live and work. We have had to:

all during a time of ambiguity and uncertainty.

You may be familiar with the picture of a sharply meandering road that has a caption at the bottom, which reads, “a bend in the road is not the end of the road unless you fail to make a turn.” Well, we have turned many tight corners these past two years. The achievements we have made give us all a glimpse of what we can accomplish. I want to recognize all of your efforts in adapting and managing the many twists and turns and doing it with such professionalism. I am grateful for your hard work and your continued efforts.

We are currently seeing case numbers coming down, which is encouraging. As a result, we are seeing many restrictions gradually being lifted across the country. However, we are not out of the woods yet. COVID-19 is still circulating in our communities and given many of our workplaces are congregate living settings, we must continue to follow our health and safety measures to avoid a surge of infections.

I also want to touch on mental health. The COVID-19 pandemic continues to create stress and anxiety for many Canadians. It is important to recognize this and how some may not have ready access to their usual support networks. There is an additional resource available called the Wellness Together Canada (WTC) online portal. It provides access to immediate, free, and confidential mental health supports, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. PocketWell, a free companion app to the WTC portal, provides access to online mental health resources. It also measures and tracks aspects of your mental well-being.

Inspiring women

This past Tuesday was International Women’s Day and we are sustaining this momentum. This year’s theme was Women Inspiring Women. Our Champion for the National Working Group for Women Employees, Angela Arnet Connidis, shared her story about how her mother inspired her. If you would also like to share a story about a woman who has inspired you and helped shape your life, I am sure your colleagues would also be inspired. 

Email your 100-word tribute to

The stories and photos will be posted on the Hub.

It was great to see the photos of Correctional Officers in uniform highlighted on social media during International Women’s Day for the role we play in public safety. Thank you for your ongoing professionalism in the way you represent CSC!

WiDS awards nominees

I am proud to share that three of CSC employees were nominated for Women in Defence and Security (WiDS) Emerging Leaders awards. The nominations recognize the hard work and leadership of:

WiDS is an organization that aims to promote and support the advancement of women in careers related to Canadian defence and security with members from:


The Alanna Jenkins Scholarship

On April 19, 2020, Correctional Manager Alanna Jenkins was one of 22 people tragically killed in Nova Scotia, along with Sean McLeod, also a Correctional Manager. We are all saddened by this loss. Alanna graduated with a psychology degree from St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, Nova Scotia. She continued her connection to the university, facilitating innumerable student field trips to Nova Institution for Women and mentoring many students who were interested in pursuing a career in corrections. In honour of Alanna and her active contributions to her alma mater, a page has been set up to establish a scholarship in her name. Learn more here on:

Reminding you of this tragic event may be triggering to some. If you need support or someone to listen, the Employee Assistance Program Referral Agents are there for you. In addition, Employee Assistance Services are available not only to you, but also to eligible family members, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Anti-Racism, diversity, and inclusion

Edwidge Vincent started as A/Director for the Anti-Racism, Diversity and Inclusion team on January 31, 2022. Edwidge will be providing leadership and direction within our Anti-Racism Framework and Action plan to address systemic racism and foster an organizational environment that is:

We all have a role to play, both individually and collectively, in advancing initiatives and change. Edwidge will have the support of CSC’s Executive Champion, Kirstan Gagnon, to advance the work within the Anti-Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion framework. It will be our shared efforts that help ensure we make positive change happen. I encourage you to view this short Q&A video (internal resource only), where Edwidge shares her passion, inspiration, and vision for leading change

Major planned IT outage

On Saturday, March 12, all applications and services provided by our main data centre will be unavailable from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm (ET). This is to allow Shared Services Canada to perform replacement work on CSC’s network to improve its performance. The applications and services will resume normal operations following the replacement. No action is required by network users. Regionally hosted applications and network connectivity between institutions will be available, but not email services.

Commemorative dates

March is Nutrition Month and this year’s theme, Ingredients for a healthier tomorrow, focuses on how dietitians use their expertise in food nutrition to create sustainable change in our food system. As our future health depends on healthy food choices, dietitians aim to create awareness and advocate for sound food choices. CSC has a team of nine registered dietitians who work in each region with offenders and institutional food services. They educate them to:

They are also the subject matter experts when it comes to questions related to food and diet in the institutions. On March 16, which is Dietitians Day, take a moment to recognize the work of our dietitians.

March is also Fraud Prevention Month. One of the goals of this annual campaign is to raise awareness of the channels available to report suspected fraudulent activity. The Federal Contracting Fraud Tip Line is an important tool for anyone wanting to anonymously report possible fraudulent activity or cheating involving business and government employees, and help put a stop to fraudulent activity in federal contracts.

Notice something suspicious in a federal contract?

Learn more about fraudulent activity on:

March 14 is Commonwealth Day, recognized by Canada and 53 other countries in the Commonwealth. The day is marked by the British Royal Union Flag flown along with the Canadian flag at federal government buildings and establishments from dawn to dusk. This year, Canada also recognizes the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, commemorating her reign of 70 years.

Next week, March 13 to 19, is Agriculture Safety Week. I would like to thank all the staff and inmates who have worked on the prison farms for the past few years at Collins Bay and Joyceville Institutions.


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

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