Saskatchewan Penitentiary

Saskatchewan Penitentiary is a medium-security facility that opened in 1911 and is located one kilometre west of Prince Albert. It serves as a Reception Centre for all federally sentenced offenders in the province of Saskatchewan. It, also receives medium-security inmates on transfer from other institutions. There are six operational Units, one of which has been designated a unit for medium-security women. The Saskatchewan Institution has a rated capacity of 573 inmates and is adjacent to Riverbend Institution.

Wall surrounding Saskatchewan Penitentiary.

Saskatchewan Penitentiary's main entrance.

Parking is available on site for visitors. All visitors including victims must report to the security desk located in the main entrance.

Main entrance where observers and victims are required to sign in a visitor's log. Please ensure you have a photo identification with you. A visitor card will be given to you and must be worn so as to be visible to staff at all times during the visit. Observers and victims will be greeted by a Parole Board of Canada (PBC) Regional Communication Officer, or a Correctional Service Canada Victim Liaison Co-ordinator, who will escort them to the waiting room and the hearing room.

Visitors must pass through a metal detector and a search of person or personal belongings may occur at that time. Institutional security staff may ask you to place your personal belongings in a locker. Please note that cameras and recording devices are not permitted in a parole hearing.

Hallway leading to the central area which connects to all cell block ranges. A pre-hearing briefing is provided by a PBC Regional Communications Officer, or a CSC Victim Liaison Co-ordinator. The conditional release decision-making process will be explained to you and questions will be answered. Visitors remain in the waiting room before the hearing, during the Board Members deliberation and after the hearing is over. Observers have access to designated washrooms.

Central area, which connects to all cell block ranges. Observers must walk through this area to get to the building where both the non-Cultural and the Cultural hearings are held.

PBC parole hearing participants include the Board Members, the CSC Parole Officer, the offender and his/her assistant. The assistant is someone of the offender's choosing, i.e. a family member or a lawyer. A security officer is also present during the hearing. A victim may present a statement to the Board Members and may choose to read it or to present it on a videotape or an audiotape. Observers and the victims are seated at the back of the room and may be in close proximity to the offender. The entire proceedings are tape-recorded.

Hearing room in circular seating arrangement for Cultural Hearings involving an Aboriginal Cultural Advisor.

The PBC Hearing Officer introduces the participants and ensures procedural safeguards are respected. Board Members then begin the parole hearing. Board Members start the hearing by asking the CSC Parole Officer to present the case and to make recommendations. Then Board Members interview the offender regarding his criminal and social history, institutional behaviour, and results of programming and release plans. The offender's assistant may speak after Board Members are finished with the offender's interview.

When Board Members have completed their interview with the offender, everyone must leave the room in order for Board Members to deliberate. Observers return to the waiting room where they can ask questions about what they have observed. When the Board Members have made their decision, everyone returns to the hearing room. The Board Members will announce their decision to the offender and will provide reasons for that decision. The hearing is now over. The observers may return to the waiting room where they may ask questions or clarifications regarding the decision.

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