COVID-19 update for offenders and their families: June 25, 2021

This content is a message to federal offenders and their families from Correctional Service of Canada's (CSC)  Commissioner.

I am pleased to report that we continue to have zero inmate cases of COVID-19 across the country. While this is great news, please continue to help minimize the spread of the virus by wearing your mask, washing your hands and practicing physical distancing as much as possible.

I am also pleased to share that over 76% of you have received at least one dose of the vaccine and over 50% are fully vaccinated. This number will continue to go up as we continue to run second dose clinics across the country. I want to thank those of you who got vaccinated. Your decision is one that will help protect you and others against COVID-19. If you are still on the fence about the vaccine, please speak to Health Services. Vaccines are safe and effective and it is important to get the facts. I want to let you know that we are beginning to ease restrictions as more get vaccinated and the situation continues to improve across the country.

Sunday, June 27, is Canadian Multiculturalism Day—the day to discover and celebrate the rich cultures that make up our Canadian society. In 1971, Canada became the first country in the world to create an official policy “to preserve the cultural freedom of all individuals and provide recognition of the cultural contributions of diverse ethnic groups to Canadian society.” 2021 marks the 50th anniversary of the Canadian Multiculturalism Policy. Our diversity is one of our greatest strengths and we must continue to embrace the many cultures and ethnicities that make up our country’s fabric.

July 1st is Canada Day. We have much to reflect on this year in light of recent events, and much to consider about what Canada means to each of us. We need to acknowledge our history, but we can also move forward as people united in solidarity, understanding, and resilience.

In closing, there was more tragic news about former residential schools on Wednesday. The Cowessess First Nation said it has discovered hundreds of unmarked graves at the site of the former Marieval Residential School, about 140 kilometres east of Regina. This may be difficult and emotional for survivors to hear. Please reach out to someone if you need to talk, like an Elder, Health Services or your support network. The National Indian Residential School Crisis Line is also available to provide support to former residential school students and those affected. You can call the National Crisis Line anytime at 1-866-925-4419.

I will leave you with a thoughtful quote: “You can't go back and change the beginning, but you can start where you are and change the ending.” ― C.S. Lewis.

Thank you for your continued cooperation. 

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