Commissioner's update for offenders and their families:
October 30, 2023

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

Since 2018, Latin American Heritage Month has been celebrated every October. Canada has a vibrant, growing community of people from all 20 Latin American countries. The month celebrates the rich and diverse Latin American cultures, cuisine, music, and dance. Let us celebrate, throughout the year, the significant role Latin Americans play in helping build a vibrant, diverse, inclusive, prosperous, and strong society.

Our Deputy Commissioner for Indigenous Corrections (DCIC) recently went to an event with STR8 UP, an organization based in Saskatchewan that assists individuals in mastering their own destiny and liberating themselves from gangs, addictions, and criminal street lifestyles. The event featured a variety of works created by established and emerging artists, many of whom either are or have been incarcerated. The DCIC met four inspiring individuals who are participating in post secondary education and/or have found meaningful employment. Organizations like this are available to you if you want to get involved and make a positive impact within the community.

I want to mention a volunteer-led program called ChIRP, short for Children of Inmates Reading Program. Community volunteers bring in a wide selection of children’s books aimed at kids from age two to 12 years. The participants can then choose a book to read to their child. They record themselves reading the book. Then, both the book and recording are sent to the child who can follow along while listening to their parent or grandparent read. This has been successful in helping build the bond between parent and child. 

The program is now in 15 institutions, and we are working to expand that to others. To learn more about ChIRP and if it is offered at your institution, please speak to your social program officer or someone from your case management team.

In addition to ChIRP, the Canadian Families and Corrections Network provides tools and services for you and your family to access and help build literacy and relationships with your children.

Just a reminder that the clocks move back Sunday, November 5, at 2:00 a.m.

One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things. —  Henry Miller

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