Commissioner's update for correctional employees: March 17, 2023
This content is a message to Correctional Service Canada (CSC) staff from CSC's Commissioner.
I would like to acknowledge the devastating deaths of two police officers in Edmonton this week. They lost their lives in the line of duty. I know this has been a difficult few days for our staff in the Prairies and our CSC community. Our hearts go out to those grieving. There have been several similar events in other parts of the country in recent months and we stand with our public safety colleagues during these difficult times.
Please reach out to the Employee Assistance Program. Their referral agents offer confidential and non-judgemental support through Lifeworks, which is available to you and your family members.
This week, I visited the Prairie and Pacific regions. On Monday, the SDC and I met with the National Indigenous Advisory Committee on the Matsqui First Nation in Abbotsford, B.C. I wish to take this opportunity to thank Chief Alice Mckay for the warm greeting and her participation in the meeting. Then, on Tuesday morning, I met with the regional management committee and presented on progress made related to my mandate letter commitments. On Wednesday, the SDC and I went to Edmonton Institution and met with:
- the management team
- correctional managers
- our labour partners, and
- the inmate committee
Thank you to everyone for their participation – we had good discussions. Unfortunately, the day before I went to Edmonton, I was advised that a staff member had passed away. During my tour, I was able to express my condolences to staff on the loss of their colleague.
United Nation’s Special Rapporteur visit
Last week, Francisco Cali Tzay, the United Nation’s Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, visited Canada. As part of his work, he toured Edmonton Institution for Women and Kent Institution to see the work CSC is accomplishing with Indigenous offenders in Canada. During his visits, Mr. Cali Tzay met with an Elder, Indigenous Liaison Officers, as well as staff members and inmates, to learn more about how we work to address the needs of Indigenous peoples in our care and custody.
He noted that the colours of the medicine wheel, painted in murals on the walls of Kent institution are also shared by Indigenous communities in his home country of Guatemala, as well as Mexico. He said he was pleased that teachings like these are available to the inmates in our institutions. He thanked CSC for the open door extended to him.
Mr. Cali Tzay will present his report, which is about Canada’s efforts towards reconciliation, to the UN Human Rights Council in the coming months.
Reminder: Complete your work agreements
On March 6, we announced the launch of the myWorkArrangements app. This is a digital solution to help formalize work agreements with CSC employees. As CSC implements the Directive on Prescribed Presence in the Workplace, all agreements must follow the terms and conditions of employment established in the collective agreements for the public service. All work agreements must be completed and approved by March 24, 2023.
Employees seeking exceptions should discuss their temporary work arrangements with their manager. Unless approved by their manager, employees awaiting a decision from the Exceptions Steering Committee are expected to work a minimum of three days onsite until a final decision is made about their request.
Questions regarding the myWorkArrangements application can be sent to:
For additional information, please consult the
- frequently asked questions (internal resource only)
Global Equity Diversity and Inclusion Practitioner Certification
This week, 8 employees from the Anti-Racism Diversity and Inclusion Directorate, including members of the Employment Equity and Diversity Committee, graduated from the Global Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Practitioner Certification Program delivered by the Canadian Congress on Inclusive Diversity and Workplace Equity. The program focused on creating a more inclusive workspace and exploring additional ideas to support CSC’s ongoing efforts to confront systemic racism and all forms of discrimination. As practitioners, our staff will be better able to support and provide advice to CSC as we undertake ant-racism and EEDC initiatives. Congratulations to all participants!
For information and resources about employment equity, diversity and inclusion at CSC visit the Hub:
- Employment equity, diversity and inclusion (internal resource only)
Celebrate les Rendez-vous de la Francophonie
March 20 is International Francophonie Day. It promotes French language and Francophone culture across Canada, and throughout the 77 French-speaking countries around the world. Les Rendez-vous de la Francophonie is an annual cultural event for Canadians to celebrate the rich contribution that French language and culture have made to our country. I am proud to count myself as one of CSC’s Francophone employees. We make up 28.5% of staff.
Until the end of March, activities are planned across the country to celebrate Les Rendez-vous de la Francophonie’s 25th anniversary.
To learn more, I invite you to visit:
- the Rendez-vous de la Francophonie website
International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
March 21 is International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. This is an opportunity to reflect on the experiences of:
- Black and Indigenous Peoples
- racialized communities, and
- religious minorities in Canada who continue to face racism and discrimination
Many initiatives are in place to break down barriers and make our workplace more equitable and inclusive for all. Embracing diversity and eliminating racism begins with each of us. At CSC, we are entrusted with the care and custody of a diverse group of offenders. The way we conduct ourselves in every situation, at work and at home, matters.
On March 21, from 11 am to 12:00 ET, you are invited to attend the Employment Equity and Diversity Committee’s (EEDC’s) International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination:
- virtual conference (internal resource only)
For more webinars and resources, please visit: the EEDC Hub page:
- International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (internal resource only)
The 2023–24 Departmental Plan
On March 9, CSC’s 2023–24 Departmental Plan was tabled in Parliament, along with other departments’ plans. The document outlines our:
- priorities, and
- expected results for the upcoming fiscal year
It describes how we will contribute to government priorities and fulfill CSC’s departmental mandate to uphold public safety.
I invite you to read more about our plans and priorities in:
Values, ethics, and standards of professional conduct
Our work at CSC is:
- complex, and
We operate in a continually changing environment that requires a high level of:
- flexibility, and
- people skills
We succeed when we fulfill our mission with integrity, and when we show respect for everyone around us.
Acting according to CSC’s values and standards of professional conduct fosters the positive, healthy workplace that we all deserve.
As public servants, the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector forms part of our terms and conditions of employment. The code requires public servants to serve the public interest by preventing and resolving any real, apparent, or potential conflicts of interest between their official responsibilities.
I appreciate the work you do to help create a culture of:
- inclusion, and
It calls for:
- kindness, and
- support of each other
Thank you, not only for the hard work you do every day in your role, but also for fostering strong relationships with your colleagues. Together, we are making CSC a better place.
Every job is a self-portrait of the person who did it. Autograph your work with excellence.
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