Correctional Service Canada is working with the Canadian Red Cross on COVID-19 response

News release

December 11, 2020 – Ottawa, Ontario – Correctional Service Canada

Today, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) announced that it is working with the Canadian Red Cross to provide additional COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control support at federal correctional institutions. This includes preparedness, planning, and educating efforts at federal correctional institutions across the country.

The Canadian Red Cross is providing onsite advice and guidance to help prevent and contain the spread of COVID-19 in the event of outbreaks. To date, the Canadian Red Cross has provided support at federal correctional institutions in Quebec, Manitoba and Alberta. Work is beginning at other sites and will continue into 2021.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, CSC has implemented rigorous infection prevention and control measures at its sites. This includes actively screening anyone entering a CSC institution, physical distancing measures, masks for inmates and staff, frequent disinfecting and cleaning of highly-touched surfaces and common areas, and increased hand washing and sanitizing.

CSC has also expanded its testing of employees and offenders, as part of our comprehensive testing strategy. This includes increased testing of staff and offenders in communities with higher levels of community transmission, testing of asymptomatic individuals, and rigorous contact tracing.

At the onset of the pandemic, CORCAN, CSC’s special operating agency that offers employment training and employability skills to federal offenders, began producing personal protective equipment. To date, CORCAN has made 773,039 non-medical masks and 44,138 washable gowns for use by CSC and other departments.

CSC continues to be diligent in applying its infection prevention and control measures and protocols in all of its workplaces. CSC established an integrated risk management process where, on an ongoing basis, decisions about its operations are made in close collaboration with public health authorities, unions, Elders, and stakeholders to prevent and mitigate the spread of COVID-19.


“The health and safety of our employees, offenders, and the public is a top priority in all of our operations. I am pleased to be working with the Canadian Red Cross as well as our other partners to ensure we are taking all steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 as we work to keep our correctional institutions and communities as safe as possible. Throughout this evolving situation, collaboration is key to ensuring that our actions are evidence-based and responsive to the health and safety needs of those in our care.”     

Anne Kelly, CSC Commissioner


Quick facts

    • Throughout this public health crisis, education and prevention have been essential to help prevent illness. We continue to raise awareness on how everyone can play a role in recognizing symptoms, implementing improved hygiene measures, ensuring masks are worn properly, and practicing physical distancing.
    • CSC provides its own health care to inmates and has dedicated health care professionals in its institutions, including nurses and physicians, who closely monitor the health of inmates.
    • When an employee becomes symptomatic or tests positive for COVID-19, they are required to contact local public health and self-isolate at home until cleared to return to work.
    • Over 250 CSC employees have been trained in contact tracing and have conducted over 1,600 tracing events.
    • As of December 9, 2020, CSC has only one site with confirmed active COVID-19 cases. Visit our testing page for more information.

Associated links


Media Relations
Correctional Service Canada

Page details

Date modified: