2016-2017 - Report on Plans and Priorities - Index

Table of Contents

Chairperson's Message

The Parole Board of Canada (PBC) is an independent administrative tribunal, and as such carries out its important public safety mandate at arm's length from the Government of Canada, while remaining fully accountable to Parliament and to Canadians. As Chairperson of the PBC, I am pleased to present the Board's 2016-17 Report on Plans and Priorities.

This report highlights our organization's significant accomplishments in carrying out its mandate, and outlines to Parliament a clear and concise plan for continuing to fulfil its important role within the increasingly complex environment which it operates, as part of the Public Safety Portfolio.

Board members and public servants at the PBC are incredibly committed and work extremely hard to contribute to a safe and secure Canada for all Canadians. They accomplish this through the delivery of programs which support and facilitate independent, quality conditional release and record suspension decision-making and clemency recommendations.

In 2016-17, the PBC will focus its efforts on four main priorities designed to meet the challenges and opportunities ahead. These priorities include:

  • Administering legislated requirements responsibly;
  • Introducing new services and accountability to victims;
  • Enhancing and implementing efficiency and effectiveness measures; and
  • Strengthening the engagement of and support to the staff and Board members.

Specific activities for this planning period include:

  • Implementation of a the web-based victims portal as part of the Canadian Victims' Bill of Rights, to enable victims of crime to register and receive information related to the offender(s) who harmed them securely and online;
  • Continue the implementation of the Electronic Files (E-File) project associated with the Integrated Decision System (IDS) which will eliminate the need for hard copy files;
  • Ensuring that systemic barriers faced by the Indigenous offender population in relation to parole are dealt with through the work of the Indigenous Circle, outreach, and ongoing training for Board members and staff; and
  • Elimination of the pardons' backlog.

I am confident that, by carrying out the plans and priorities outlined in this report, the Board has set a course to ensure continued efficiency and effectiveness in the fulfillment of its mandate, while ensuring it continues to meet the highest standards of professionalism, quality, and efficiency.

Harvey Cenaiko
Chairperson, Parole Board of Canada

Section I — Organizational Expenditure Overview

Organizational Profile

Appropriate Minister: The Honourable Ralph Goodale, P.C., M.P.

Institutional Head: Harvey Cenaiko, Chairperson

Ministerial portfolio: Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Enabling Instruments: The legal authority under which the PBC operates includes the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (CCRA) and its Regulations, the Criminal Records Act (CRA) and its Regulations, the Letters Patent, the Criminal Code, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and other legislation.

Year of Incorporation/Commencement: 1959

Other: The Parole Board of Canada (the PBC or “the Board”) constantly strives to contribute to the Government of Canada’s outcome of a safe and secure Canada. The Board contributes to this outcome by making quality conditional release and record suspension decisions, and clemency recommendations.

The PBC is headed by a Chairperson who reports to Parliament through the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness. The Minister, however, does not have statutory authority to give direction to the Chairperson or other members of the PBC in the exercise of their decision-making powers. This structure helps to ensure the impartiality and integrity of the Board's decision-making process.

In making conditional release and record suspension decisions, as well as clemency recommendations, the Board's primary objective is the long-term protection of society. In rendering its decisions, the PBC is autonomous and independent. However, its decisions are open and transparent to the public by virtue of its legislation and policies.

The protection of society is the paramount consideration for all decisions taken by the Board. Conditional release decisions are limited to only what is necessary and proportionate to facilitate as appropriate, the timely reintegration of offenders as law-abiding citizens. In addition, a record suspension allows people who were convicted of a criminal offence, but have completed their sentence and demonstrated they are law-abiding citizens for a prescribed number of years, to have their criminal record kept separate and apart from other criminal records.

Outcomes of the PBC's work can be found in its annual Performance Monitoring Report (PMR). The PMR provides performance and statistical information for the past five years for the PBC's two legislative based programs - conditional release; and clemency and record suspensions.

The Board carries out its responsibilities through a national office in Ottawa, as well as six offices in five regions across the country (Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario, Prairie, and Pacific).

PBC Locations

PBC Locations
  • Pacific/Yukon Regional Office - Abbotsford, British Columbia
  • Prairie/Northwest Territories Regional Offices - Edmonton, Alberta and Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
  • Ontario/Nunavut Regional Office - Kingston, Ontario
  • National Office - Ottawa, Ontario
  • Québec Regional Office - Montreal, Québec
  • Atlantic Regional Office - Moncton, New Brunswick

The Board's regional offices deliver the conditional release program. Conditional release decisions are made by Board members, who are supported in their decision-making by public service staff. Staff schedule hearings, provide information for decision-making; ensure that information for decision-making is shared with offenders, and communicate conditional release decisions to offenders, Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) representatives and others as required. Regional staff also provide information to victims, make arrangements for observers at hearings, and manage requests for access to the Board's decision registry.

While Board members from all five regions make decisions related to record suspensions, the data collection, investigation and assessment work for record suspensions and clemency are conducted by public service staff at the national office. In addition, Board members in the Appeal Division at the national office review conditional release decisions upon receipt of an application for appeal to determine if the law and processes were respected.

Public service employees at the national office develop national policies and procedures related to all program areas, coordinate Board member appointments and training, deliver a program of public information, and respond to ATIP requests. Other work performed at the national office includes strategic and operational planning, resource management, program monitoring, case reviews and investigations, and an array of internal services.

Consistent with the provisions of the Acts that govern the PBC, Board members are independent in their decision-making responsibilities, and free from outside interference of any kind. As independent decision-makers, Board members are bound by legislation, guided by policy, and are responsible for:

  • Reviewing all information for consideration in conditional release, record suspension and clemency cases;
  • Conducting an in-depth analysis of each case, and requesting additional information, as necessary, to support quality decision-making;
  • Assessing the risk and other factors related to cases, voting independently on the disposition of each case, and providing sound, well-documented, written reasons for decisions; and
  • Ensuring that reviews are conducted in accordance with the duty to act fairly, with respect for all procedural safeguards.

The Chairperson of the PBC is a full-time member of the Board and its Chief Executive Officer. The Chairperson directs the PBC's program delivery in keeping with the Government of Canada's overall plans and priorities. The Chairperson is accountable for the effectiveness and efficiency of the PBC's policies and operations and is assisted in these responsibilities by the Executive Vice-Chairperson, the Vice-Chairperson of the Appeal Division, the Board's five regional Vice-Chairpersons, and senior managers.

The Executive Director General of the Board is its senior staff member and Chief Operating Officer. The Executive Director General, in support of the Chairperson, provides leadership for strategic and operational planning, resource management, program monitoring and administration, as well as the operation of the national office and the regions.

The following organizational chart provides additional details.

Note: Within the chart below the blue background denotes Governor-in-Council term appointees and the grey background signifies public service employees.

Organizational Chart

PBC Chairperson - Governor-in-Council term appointee

  • Senior Legal Counsel - public service employee
  • Director Public Affairs - public service employee
  • Director Finance and Planning - public service employee
  • Executive Director General - public service employee
    • Regional Directors General - public service employee
    • Director General Policy and Operations - public service employee
    • Director Corporate Services - public service employee
    • Director Record Suspension and Clemency - public service employee
  • Regional Vice-Chairpersons (5) / Vice-Chairperson Appeal Division - Governor-in-Council term appointee
  • Executive Vice-Chairperson - Governor-in-Council term appointee
    • Director Board Member Secretariat - public service employee

Organizational Context

Raison d'être

The PBC is an agency within the Public Safety Portfolio.

The Board is an independent administrative tribunal that has exclusive jurisdiction and absolute discretion under the CCRA to grant, cancel, terminate or revoke day parole, full parole, and authorize or approve temporary absences. The Board can on referral also terminate or revoke statutory release.

The Board has exclusive jurisdiction and absolute discretion to order, refuse to order or revoke a record suspension under the CRA. In addition, the PBC is authorized to modify or remove driving prohibitions under Section 109 and to investigate Royal Prerogative of Mercy (RPM) requests under Section 110 of the CCRA. The Board also provides recommendations on clemency to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

Responsibilities

In addition to the raison d'être above, the PBC may also order (on referral by the CSC) that certain offenders be held in custody until the end of their sentence. This is called detention during a period of statutory release. Furthermore, the Board makes conditional release decisions for federal offenders, those serving sentences of two years or more, and for offenders serving sentences of less than two years in provinces and territories that do not have their own parole boards. Only the provinces of Ontario and Quebec currently have their own parole boards, which make parole decisions for provincial offenders. The Board is also responsible for imposing, modifying or removing release conditions on temporary absences, day paroles, full paroles, statutory releases and long-term supervision orders.

The Board has legislated responsibilities related to openness and accountability, which are the provision of information to victims of crime, observers at hearings; access to the PBC's decision registry: and delivery of a program of public information.

Vision Statement

As an independent administrative tribunal, the Parole Board of Canada contributes to making communities safer.

Our Mission

The Parole Board of Canada, as a part of the criminal justice system, makes independent, quality conditional release and record suspension decisions and clemency recommendations, in an open and accountable manner, while respecting the rights and dignity of both offenders and victims, in accordance with its statutory responsibilities and authorities.

Values

The PBC's core values are:

  • Respect - We respect the inherent potential and rights of all members of society;
  • Openness, Integrity, and Accountability - We are committed to openness, integrity and accountability in the execution of our mandate; and
  • Excellence - We achieve the Parole Board of Canada's Mission through the contributions of qualified individuals working in a continuous learning environment.

Strategic Outcome and Program Alignment Architecture (PAA)

The Board's Strategic Outcome and PAA reflect the key aspects of its legislated responsibilities for conditional release, record suspensions and clemency, and represent the areas of accountability and performance in which the public and Parliamentarians most frequently express interest. In this context, the Board's strategic outcome is the cornerstone of its public accountability. The PAA includes a single outcome and four programs.

The following paragraph illustrates the PBC's complete framework of programs, which contribute to the PBC's single strategic outcome:

Strategic Outcome

Conditional release and record suspension decisions and decision processes that safeguard Canadian communities.

Program: 1.1 Conditional Release Decisions;

Program: 1.2 Conditional Release Openness and Accountability;

Program: 1.3 Record Suspension Decisions/Clemency Recommendations; and

Program: 1.4 Internal Services.

Organizational Priorities

The PBC's Organizational Priorities for 2016-17 are:

  • Administering legislated requirements responsibly;
  • Introducing new services and accountability to victims;
  • Strengthening the engagement of and support to the staff and Board members; and
  • Enhancing and implementing efficiency and effectiveness measures.

The following identifies the Board's key organizational priorities for 2016-17, links them to the Board's Program Alignment Architecture, describes why they are priorities, and indicates planned initiatives for meeting these priorities.

Priority: Administering legislated requirements responsibly

Description: Parole is a type of conditional release. Conditional release contributes to public safety by helping offenders re-integrate into society as law-abiding citizens through a gradual, controlled, and supported release with conditions. The PBC continually strives to strengthen its capacity for quality conditional release decision-making in response to significant program delivery challenges. These include: increased complexity in conditional release decision-making; diversity in the federal offender population (e.g., Indigenous offenders); and mental health issues. In 2016-17, the PBC expects to complete almost 16,000 conditional release reviews for federal and provincial/territorial offenders.

The Board has legislated responsibilities related to openness and accountability. It is imperative for the PBC to remain open and accountable to the public and to victims of crime in the delivery of its mandate. Over the coming year, the Board expects to have almost 29,000 contacts with victims, to assist nearly 4,000 persons observing its hearings, including victims who read statements at hearings, and process approximately 7,400 requests for access to the Board's Decision Registry.

Record suspensions are beneficial to the individuals who earn them and to society in general. Record suspensions demonstrate a commitment to a law-abiding lifestyle, and to reconciliation with society, both of which help people secure jobs, reduce reliance on social programs, and consequently give back to society by generating revenue and contributing to social and economic growth. Service standards apply to the record suspension program as defined under the User Fees Act (UFA). In 2016-17, the PBC expects to receive approximately 11,000 record suspension applications, out of those applications it is estimated that 77% (i.e., 9,000) will be accepted as eligible and complete and will be processed. In addition, the PBC expects to eliminate the Pardon backlog during this planning period.

The RPM or Clemency is applied only in exceptional circumstances, where there exists no other lawful remedy; and where, without such remedy, there would be undue hardship that is disproportionate to the nature of the offence or offences, and that is more severe for the applicant than for other individuals in similar situations.

Priority Type: Ongoing
Planned InitiativesTable 1 Footnote 1 Link to Program Alignment Architecture

Table 1 Footnotes

Table 1 Footnote 1

All planned initiatives outlined in the table are ongoing.

Return to Table 1 footnote 1 referrer

Make independent, informed conditional release and record suspension decisions and clemency recommendations.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
Refine and/or develop conditional release and record suspension policies to reflect legislative and regulatory requirements, and effectively communicate and/or provide training across the Board to ensure national consistency in decision-making processes.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Deliver comprehensive and efficient program management and support to Board member decision-making.
  • Conditional release decisions
Address the mental health needs of offenders in the parole process, including any potential gaps in operations.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
Ensure that systemic barriers faced by the Indigenous offender population in relation to parole are dealt with through the work of Indigenous Circle, outreach, and ongoing training for Board members and staff.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
Work with domestic and international counterparts to share best-practices and lessons learned, including in the areas of Board member training, Indigenous Initiatives, and victims services.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
Provide corporate planning and reporting, procurement and financial operational oversight and support.
  • Internal services
Initiate a preliminary review of the service standards and user fee for record suspensions.
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
Continue to effectively respond to Parliamentarians' enquiries and requests.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Review, renew or create communications products for victims, offenders and the general public to communicate how legislative change affects the Board's operations.
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Internal services
Strengthen and promote the use of the two official languages of Canada.
  • Internal services

Priority: Introducing new services and accountability to victims

Description: The Board has a 30-year history of innovating within the law to provide transparency and accountability to victims, all while fulfilling its mandate of contributing to public safety. The Canadian Victims Bill of Rights enshrines in law victims' statutory rights to information, protection, participation and restitution, in an effort to balance their rights with those of offenders.

The Board is committed to treating victims of crime with courtesy, compassion and respect, and has a duty to act fairly to both victims and offenders in the interest of the administration of justice and public safety.

In order to provide victims with greater access to the justice system, and the Board’s legislated responsibilities and commitment to openness and accountability, it is important to ensure access to information for victims of crime.

Priority type: Previously committed to
Planned Initiatives Link to Program Alignment Architecture
Provide and maintain quality information services to victims and the public.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
Monitor and assess provision of services related to victims.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
Update public information products for victims on the conditional release decision-making process and conduct outreach.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
Work in partnership with CSC to enhance PBC's effectiveness in areas of shared responsibilities regarding the provision of information to victims.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
Foster on-going relationships with the Federal Ombudsman for Victims of Crime, victims' non-governmental organizations and other governmental departments and agencies working with victims.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
In collaboration with CSC, launch and maintain the Victims Portal.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability

Priority: Strengthening the engagement of and support to the staff and Board members

Description: The PBC will manage its Board members and employees in an open and equitable manner to help them respond to new ways of doing business and to meet future challenges. This includes facilitating ongoing, open and timely dialogue, and mentoring between managers and their staff, as well as providing cross-training and skills development to keep staff engaged and increase retention. The Board will integrate into the operational practices of all divisions the need to cross-train their staff, through things such as rotational assignments within and across sections and divisions, to allow employees to further expand their knowledge of the various PBC functions and different areas of specialization.

Board member training is a priority as Board decisions must be based on sound and consistent decision-making. As such there will be a review of the orientation training for new Board members to determine the knowledge, tools and the skills that are required of Board members and offer training accordingly. In addition, the Board will be taking the required steps to formalize cross-regional exchanges that will allow Board members to expand their knowledge and experiences, while allowing for sharing of best practices and lessons learned with Board members and staff from other regional offices.

Priority type: Ongoing
Planned Initiatives Link to Program Alignment Architecture
Encourage timely communication among senior managers, Board members and staff to enhance participation in the formulation of improvements to internal operations.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/ Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Maintain a positive work environment that is free from harassment and discrimination, and that values and supports the contributions of all Board members and staff.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Improve activities related to knowledge management, learning and development, systems and tools, and to address organizational needs in a timely and effective manner.
  • Internal services
Enhance corporate capacity to ensure sufficient service in areas such as HR planning, security and information management.
  • Internal services
Increase effective use of internal communications tools and opportunities, such as iNet (i.e., intranet) and Blueprint/Destination 2020.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/ Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Monitor the action developed in response to the results of the 2014 survey of federal officials.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/ Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Recognize staff through the Board's recognition program (i.e. Chairperson's Awards of Distinction Program, Instant Awards, Long Service Awards, etc.).
  • Internal services

Priority: Enhancing and implementing efficiency and effectiveness measures

Description: A strong and strategically focused governance structure ensures an integrated corporate system of decision-making, and enables effective allocation of resources to priorities, alignment of programs to outcomes and management of accountabilities.

The PBC works in a demanding environment that requires effective support for government priorities, careful assessment of criminal justice issues and community concerns. The Board is expected to rigorously pursue innovation and improvements to meet heavy workload pressures, with limited resources.

Public safety remains the Board's primary concern in all aspects of decision-making policy, training, and operations.

In an effort to achieve a more cost-effective and efficient organization, the Board is pursuing its review of current decision processes and support structures to identify where and how improvements or updates may be required.

There is also the recognition that effective information/technology management is essential for the PBC to be able to execute its corporate strategy and fulfil its mandate.

Priority type: Ongoing
Planned Initiatives Link to Program Alignment Architecture
Assess implications of government proposals for reform of corrections and criminal justice as it pertains to the Board's policies and procedures, anticipated workload pressures, resource needs, and training requirements for Board members and staff.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/ Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Explore innovative and more efficient ways to achieve the PBC's mandate and mission as it relates to its decision-making and operational structures.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Conditional release openness and accountability
  • Record suspensions decisions/ Clemency recommendations
Enhance, communicate and uphold corporate strategy management practices to better inform decision-makers at all levels of the Board.
  • Internal services
Improve and monitor service standards and efficiency in conditional release and record suspension program delivery and Board member decision-making.
  • Conditional release decisions
  • Record suspensions decisions/Clemency recommendations
  • Internal services
Respond to central agency guidance and direction to improve internal management procedures.
  • Internal services
Provide enterprise-wide support services (i.e., human resources (HR), information technology (IT), information management (IM), and security and accommodation).
  • Internal services

For more information on organizational priorities, see the Minister's mandate letter on the Prime Minister of Canada's website.

Risk Analysis

Key Risks

RiskTable 2 Footnote 1 Risk Response Strategy Link to Program Alignment Architecture

Table 2 Footnotes

Table 2 Footnote 1

The Board identifies corporate risks annually through it's the Corporate Risk Profile.

Return to Table 2 footnote 1 referrer

Quality Decision-Making

There is a risk that the quality of decision-making could be affected if the following are not addressed:

  • The pace at which some legislative amendments occur which represent challenges for revisions to policies and procedures, implementation, training and communications (internal and external to the Board);
  • Board member (BM) qualification process does not result in the (re-)appointment of BMs, and professional standard matters are not resolved;
  • Policy harmonization with CSC regarding risk assessment criteria; and
  • Communication, training and knowledge transfer.
  • Ongoing national consultations to develop and communicate policies and procedures.
  • Hold regular meetings with stakeholders (i.e., portfolio, other government departments, criminal justice partners and non-government organizations).
  • Develop a BM training curriculum to help capture all of the essential and required training and finalize the BM orientation modernization.
  • Develop and maintain a statutory training program (at national and in the regions) in line with the jurisprudence and theories on risk assessment.
  • Perform regular BM training activities at the national office and in the regions (i.e., BM Orientation, Annual Training on Risk Assessment (ATRA), regional BM trainings/workshops, etc.).
  • Develop and provide staff training/knowledge transfer materials (e.g., through the Succession Planning Initiative, Regional Communications Officer (RCO) training, etc.).
  • Run two BM qualification processes per year, with the participation of an Indigenous Elder during the selection process, and maintain a list of qualified individuals for appointment consideration.

Conditional release decisions

Conditional release openness and accountability

Record suspensions decisions /Clemency recommendations

Internal services

Program Delivery and Management

There is a risk that the Board may not be able to deliver its programs and services to the required level, due to factors such as frequent and/or significant legislative changes, court decisions, limited resource capacity, performance issues, antiquated IT infrastructure, the level of IT support, etc.

  • Monitor corporate and operational processes to ensure they are/continue to be standardized, harmonized and documented.
  • Continue to monitor the performance management system.
  • Update workload formulas to inform the optimum mix necessary between Full-Time BMs (FTBM) and Part-Time BMs (PTBM) usage.
  • Work closely with the Minister's Office and the Privy Council Office to identify and manage vacancies for both FT and PT BM positions.
  • Senior managers assess and reassign BM workloads throughout the regions.
  • Continue to provide relevant and timely training to staff and BMs.
  • Cross-train employees, where appropriate, to allow opportunities to broaden their experience and knowledge base.
  • Continue to work with Correctional Service Canada (CSC) and other stakeholders to maintain regular and effective dialogue.
  • Continue to ensure that staffing processes are completed and pools of qualified candidates are established to enable positions to be filled quickly.
  • Continue the implementation of the Electronic Files (E-File) project associated with IDS.
  • Continue to work on the Pardons backlog.
  • Actively work within the Freebalance Cluster to ensure a strategy is in place to ensure financial system capacity continues pending the migration to a new financial system through the Financial Management Transformation Initiative.
  • Actively work with central agencies to implement both Pay Modernization System (i.e., Phoenix) and MyGCHR (i.e., PeopleSoft 9.1).

Conditional release decisions

Conditional release openness and accountability

Record suspensions decisions /Clemency recommendations

Internal services

Building and Sustaining Human Capital

There is a risk that key activities and functions could be adversely affected unless the Board is able to recruit, stabilize, strengthen competencies and capacity, and retain its workforce while ensuring employee wellness.

  • Promote the opportunities available for those interested in a BM position.
  • Refine the assessment tools used during the BM qualification process.
  • Provide BM training on an ongoing basis in order to enhance skills and knowledge.
  • BM evaluations are conducted annually in order to identify strengths and areas for improvement that guide the training.
  • Develop and/or update staffing solutions/tools (i.e., creating pools, anticipatory appointment processes, template staffing tools, alternative solutions to temporary staffing, etc.) in order to staff vacant positions.
  • Implement the Learning and Development Framework.
  • Promoting management development programs to strengthen leadership skills of middle managers.
  • Succession plan is being implemented with the support of champions and their working groups.
  • Monitoring the Performance Management System (i.e., mandatory on-line training, mid-year-reviews and learning plans, etc.).

Conditional release decisions

Conditional release openness and accountability

Record suspensions decisions /Clemency recommendations

Internal services

Compliance with Government and Central Agency Requirements

There is a risk that the Board will be challenged by its capacity to consistently respond to government-wide policies and requirements, undermining its credibility.

  • Continue remote and on-site monitoring of financial management and procurement practices.
  • The Board has identified an Official Language (OL) Champion, supports language training for employees, and ensures language requirements in the workplace and for individual positions are adhered to/appropriate.
  • To promote and increase awareness of security concerns aligned with Policy on Government Security.
  • Hold regular meetings with the Information Technology Steering Committee (ITSC) at CSC to ensure continuity of responsibility.
  • A monitoring and tracking system is in place to reassign critical record suspension files.
  • Create and communicate the Board's Policy on Service Strategy.
  • Develop action plans for Open Government Data and a number of horizontal audits.

Conditional release decisions

Conditional release openness and accountability

Record suspensions decisions /Clemency recommendations

Internal services

In recognition of the current fiscal environment, the Board will continue to examine program spending and re-investment opportunities, identify efficiency measures, and make reallocations against identified priorities. The PBC will continue to mitigate and manage the impact of pressures, efficiency measures, and legislative changes in order to achieve the best results for Canadians.

The PBC works in a dynamic environment that demands careful assessment of criminal justice issues and community concerns to ensure alignment with the Government of Canada's outcome of a safe and secure Canada. The Board rigorously pursues innovation and improvements to meet workload pressures. Public safety remains the Board's primary consideration in all aspects of decision-making policy, training, and operations.

The Board delivers program areas grounded in legislation: conditional release; record suspensions, and clemency investigations. The PBC also manages a range of internal services that provide critical support for program delivery. The conditional release area is the largest and accounts for 77% of annual program expenditures before revenue (including conditional release, and openness and accountability). Program delivery is labour-intensive, with salary costs accounting for approximately 87% of yearly program expenditures before revenue. Most of the remaining expenditures cover essential operating costs, such as travel to parole hearings.

Conditional Release

The PBC's workloads are shaped by many factors, some of which are beyond its control. Legislation governing the Board (i.e., the CCRA) is prescriptive, specifying when and how the Board conducts its business (e.g., when a review is required by law; and when to use hearings). In addition, workloads are driven by the actions of offenders, victims and the community. In concrete terms, this means that the PBC must deal with high workload volumes, involving issues critical to public safety, under tight timeframes and amid intense public scrutiny. In 2016-17, the PBC expects to complete almost 16,000 conditional release reviews for federal and provincial/territorial offenders.

The openness and accountability provisions of the CCRA also continue to present important challenges for the Board with respect to:

  • Sharing information with victims of crime;
  • Providing information and assistance to those who wish to observe PBC hearings or gain access to the Board's registry of decisions; and
  • Delivering a program of public information.
Record Suspensions and Clemency

The PBC's record suspension workload is also shaped by factors beyond its control. Legislation governing the Board's work (i.e., the CRA) is prescriptive, specifying precisely how the Board conducts its business (e.g., admissibility and measuring merit). In addition, workloads are also driven by fluctuating volumes of requests for record suspensions. In concrete terms, this means that the PBC must deal with high workload volumes, involving issues critical to public safety, under legislatively established timeframes (i.e., UFA), amid intense public scrutiny. In 2016-17, the Board expects to complete over 9,000 record suspension assessments and decisions.

Since February 2012, applicants for a record suspension must pay a processing fee of $631. Consequently, the PBC must adhere to established service standards prescribed by requirements of the UFA.

In 2016-17, the Board will continue to focus on operational efficiencies and streamlining of processes and expects to eliminate the Pardon backlog.

Since 2010, the Clemency Unit has seen constant growth in clemency requests. In order to minimize the impact of this increase, human resource strategies and streamlined processes have been adopted and better investigation strategies are being used. The Board expects to receive approximately 50 clemency requests in 2016-17.

Strategic Resource Management

The Board must continue to address the need for strategic management of human, financial, security and information and technology resources to support quality program delivery. The PBC is committed to ensuring a strong, diverse and dynamic workforce that excels in delivering the Board's mandate to Canadians, today and in the years to come.

A key challenge for the Board is to stabilize its workforce and strengthen succession planning in relation to both its public service staff and its Board members.

It is necessary for the Board to maintain sufficient numbers of Board members, who are Governor-in-Council term appointments. The CCRA specifies that the Board will comprise no more than 60 full-time Board members, and provides for the appointment of part-time members to help manage fluctuating conditional release decision-making workloads. The PBC continues to ensure that it identifies sufficient numbers of qualified candidates for consideration for selection as Board members. The Board also provides training and mentoring to ensure that Board members have the knowledge they need to adhere to legislation and regulations, and assess risk in their decision-making.

In addition, departures of experienced public service staff have a significant impact as they erode corporate memory and diminish critical knowledge of law, policy and training. The effect of this is especially acute in a small organization. Board staff provide the continuity of knowledge and information essential for support and delivery of programs. As such, the PBC has developed and continues to update its Human Resources Plan for dealing with staff turnover.

Timely access to relevant information provides the foundation for quality conditional release, record suspension decision-making and clemency recommendations and ultimately for the Board's continuing contribution to public safety. In addition, the PBC must deal with legislated responsibilities for sharing appropriate information with victims of crime, offenders, other criminal justice partners, and the public. In this environment, strategic information management is crucial, requiring the Board to have the automated systems necessary to support effective collection, storage and sharing of information. Additionally, the PBC must have in place the policies and procedures necessary to ensure effective information management. Progress in these areas requires the assistance of CSC, the Board's information technology service provider.

For the foreseeable future, the Board will face complex and growing workload pressures in areas of legislated responsibility. For this reason, strong strategic management of financial resources is essential in order to closely monitor impacts and identify opportunities to reallocate and re-invest in the Board's programs in line with changing priorities.

Planned Expenditures

The following tables provide a summary of the PBC's total planned spending and human resources over the next three fiscal years.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2016-17 Main Estimates 2016-17 Planned Spending 2017-18 Planned Spending 2018-19 Planned Spending
46,789,956 49,608,805 47,615,440 47,623,283
Human Resources (full-time equivalents- FTEs)
2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
495 485 485

The following table provides a planning summary of the performance indicators and targets for the PBC's strategic outcome. In addition, the table indicates the planned spending for each of the programs for the next three fiscal years.

Budgetary Planning Summary for Strategic Outcome and Programs (dollars)
Strategic Outcome(s), Program(s) and Internal Services Expenditures 2015-16 Forecast Spending 2016-17 Main Estimates Planned Spending
2013-14 2014-15 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
1.1 Conditional Release Decisions 36,601,459 37,027,793 35,376,801 34,534,060 37,519,878 35,111,131 35,117,026
1.2 Conditional Release Openness and Accountability 5,552,600 5,728,180 3,729,219 4,730,594 3,952,579 4,847,261 4,848,576
1.3 Record Suspensions Decisions/Clemency Recommendations 2,846,012 2,317,620 836,177 551,914 775,438 606,962 606,962
Strategic Outcome Subtotal 45,000,071 45,073,593 39,942,197 39,816,568 42,247,895 40,565,354 40,572,564
Internal Services Subtotal 5,410,406 5,048,803 7,124,832 6,973,388 7,360,910 7,050,086 7,050,719
Total 50,410,477 50,122,396 47,067,029 46,789,956 49,608,805 47,615,440 47,623,283

Planned Spending reflects funds to be authorized through the Estimates process as presented in the Annual Reference Level Update and additional Supplementary Estimates, and allotment transfers expected to be received during the respective fiscal year.

Alignment of 2016-17 Spending With the Whole-of-Government Framework (dollars)
Strategic Outcome Program Spending Area Government of Canada Outcome 2016-17 Planned Spending
Conditional release and record suspension decisions and decision processes that safeguard Canadian communities 1.1 Conditional Release Decisions Social Affairs Safe and secure Canada 37,519,878
1.2 Conditional Release Openness and Accountability Social Affairs Safe and secure Canada 3,952,579
1.3 Record Suspension Decisions/ Clemency Recommendations Social Affairs Safe and secure Canada 775,438
Total Planned Spending by Spending Area (dollars)
Spending Area 2016-17 Planned Spending
Social Affairs 42,247,895

Departmental Spending Trend

For 2016-17, the PBC plans to spend $49.6 million to meet the expected results of its programs and contribute to its strategic outcome.

The figure below illustrates the PBC's spending trend from 2013-14 to 2018-19. The 2015-16 forecast spending of $47.1 million is based on PBC's November 2015 forecast.

Departmental Spending Trend Graph (dollars)
Departmental Spending Trend Graph
Departmental Spending Trend Graph (dollars)
2013-14 2014-15 2015-16 2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
Sunset 1,298,901 1,386,650 0 0 0 0
Statutory 6,689,324 6,325,676 6,025,387 6,118,853 6,119,888 6,120,939
Voted 42,422,252 42,410,070 41,041,642 43,489,952 41,495,552 41,502,344
Total 50,410,477 50,122,396 47,067,029 49,608,805 47,615,440 47,623,283

The spending amounts presented in the chart for 2013-14 to 2014-15 are actual results presented in the Public Accounts of Canada.

Forecasted spending for fiscal year 2015-16 is $47.1 million. This estimate is based on the total authorities less an estimated lapse of $2.0 million. The total authorities of $49.1 million include:

  • funding received through the Main Estimates of $45.9 million;
  • carry-forward of lapsed funds from 2014–15 of $1.9 million;
  • an increase of $0.7 million for additional workload related to Escorted Temporary absences;
  • the anticipated funding of $0.6 million million through transfers from Treasury Board Secretariat related to the payout of severance pay and other salary related items refundable by Treasury Board Secretariat;
  • an increase of $0.3 million for additional workload related to the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights;
  • a decrease of $0.3 million for Back-Office Transformation.

Fiscal year 2016-17 projected spending is $49.6 million, which includes:

  • funding to be received through the Main Estimates of $46.8 million;
  • an estimated carry-forward of lapsed funds from 2015–16 of $2.0 million; and
  • the anticipated funding of $0.8 million through transfers from Treasury Board Secretariat related to the payout of severance pay and other salary related items refundable by Treasury Board Secretariat.

Projected spending for fiscal years 2017–18 and 2018–19 is $47.6 million respectively, which is the anticipated funding to be received through the Main Estimates and from Treasury Board Secretariat related to the payout of severance pay and other salary related items refundable by Treasury Board Secretariat.

Estimates by Vote

For information on the Parole Board of Canada's organizational appropriations, consult the 2016–17 Main Estimates.

Section II – Analysis of Programs by Strategic Outcome

Strategic Outcome (SO)

The Board has a single strategic outcome:

Conditional release and record suspension decisions and decision processes that safeguard Canadian communities.

PBC programs and priorities are designed to support continuous progress in achieving its strategic outcome. The following section describes the PBC's four programs and identifies the expected results, performance indicators and targets for each of them. This section also explains how the PBC plans on meeting the expected results and presents the financial and non-financial resources that will be dedicated to each program.

Program 1.1: Conditional Release Decisions

Program Description: Conditional release is based on the principle that community safety is enhanced by the gradual release of offenders to the community when appropriate. Quality decisions based on the risk of re-offending, in conjunction with effective programs and treatment, and effective community supervision all contribute to the process. Through this program, PBC staff provides timely, accurate information for Board member decision-making, and develops training and policies that are essential tools for risk assessment and decision-making.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2016−17 Main Estimates 2016−17 Planned Spending 2017−18 Planned Spending 2018−19 Planned Spending
34,534,060 37,519,878 35,111,131 35,117,026
Human Resources (FTEs)
2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
326 326 326
Performance Measurement
Expected Results Performance Indicators TargetsTable 3 Footnote 1 Date to be Achieved

Table 3 Footnotes

Table 3 Footnote 1

The PBC contributes to this target by ensuring quality conditional release decisions. External factors may come into play that are beyond the Board's control.

Return to Table ## footnote 1 referrer

Conditional release decisions contribute to public safety. The percentage of offenders on parole that do not incur a new violent offence prior to the end of the supervision period. ≥98% Annual
The percentage of offenders who completed their sentence on full parole and who are not re-admitted after release because of a new violent conviction (five years post-warrant expiry). ≥98% Annual
The percentage of decisions that are not modified by the Appeal Division. ≥90% Annual

Planning Highlights

Continue to:

  • integrate corporate risk management into governance structures and decision-making processes;
  • provide in-depth orientation and training for new Board members to provide them with information and the resources required to be prepared to assess risk and make quality conditional release decisions;
  • ensure effective use of technology to support Board member decision-making (i.e., through the IDS development, support and maintenance, data analysis, video-conferencing procedures, etc.);
  • assess legislative and government initiatives to respond to anticipated changes that may impact the Board, and ensure corresponding PBC policies and procedures are updated accordingly;
  • strengthen Board member qualification and re-appointment processes and carry out professional conduct and performance evaluations; and
  • update and provide regular Board member training, rooted in evidence-based practices and in line with legislation and policies, pertinent to Board member activities, and consistent with adult learning principles.

Program 1.2: Conditional Release Openness and Accountability

Program Description: This program ensures that PBC operates in an open and accountable manner, consistent with the provisions of the CCRA. This program works with victims of crime and the general public by providing information, including access to the Board's registry of decisions, as well as providing assistance for observers at hearings. The program also works to encourage citizen engagement, investigates tragic incidents in the community, monitors the Board's performance and reports on conditional release processes.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2016−17 Main Estimates 2016−17 Planned Spending 2017−18 Planned Spending 2018−19 Planned Spending
4,730,594 3,952,579 4,847,261 4,848,576
Human Resources (FTEs)
2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
44 44 44
Performance Measurement
Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Date to be Achieved
The PBC operates in an open and accountable manner, consistent with the CCRA. The percentage of those who access PBC services (i.e., victims and general public) who are satisfied with the quality and timeliness of information provided by PBC. ≥80% Analysis of PBC questionnaires every five years.

Planning Highlights

Continue to:

  • fulfill legislative responsibilities in the provision of information to victims, facilitating victim attendance and presentations at hearings, and their access to offender information and the decision registry;
  • promote the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights;
  • provide national training to PBC staff working with victims to enhance the overall effectiveness and consistency of victim services; and
  • reach out to provincial and territorial criminal justice partners, victims, and community partners.

Program 1.3: Record Suspension Decisions/Clemency Recommendations

Program Description: A record suspension is designed to support the successful reintegration of an individual into society. It is a formal attempt to remove the stigma of a criminal record for people found guilty of a federal offence and who, after satisfying their sentence and specified waiting period, have shown themselves to be responsible law-abiding citizens. Through this program the PBC screens applications for completeness and eligibility, collects information for decision-making and develops policy to guide decision processes. This program is also responsible for assessing requests and providing recommendations under the RPM (i.e., clemency) and providing advice to the Board on the merits of each case.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2016−17 Main Estimates 2016−17 Planned Spending 2017−18 Planned Spending 2018−19 Planned Spending
4,781,914 5,005,438 4,836,962 4,836,962
(4,230,000) (4,230,000) (4,230,000) (4,230,000)
551,914 775,438 606,962 606,962
Human Resources (FTEs)
2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
65 55 55
Performance Measurement
Expected Results Performance Indicators TargetsTable 4 Footnote 1 Date to be Achieved

Table 4 Footnotes

Table 4 Footnote 1

The PBC contributes to this target by ensuring quality conditional release decisions. External factors may come into play that are beyond the Board's control.

Return to Table ## footnote 1 referrer

Record suspension decisions support rehabilitation and community reintegration. The percentage of record suspension recipients whose record suspensions remain in effect. ≥95% Annual

Planning Highlights

Continue to work:

  • with criminal justice partners in the PBC's assessment of record suspension applications;
  • with NGOs, including Indigenous organizations, in assisting record suspension applicants; and
  • directly with record suspension applicants to facilitate processes.

Program 1.4: Internal Services

Program Description: Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. Internal services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization, and not those provided to a specific program. The groups of activities are Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; and Acquisition Services.

Budgetary Financial Resources (dollars)
2016−17 Main Estimates 2016−17 Planned Spending 2017−18 Planned Spending 2018−19 Planned Spending
6,973,388 7,360,910 7,050,086 7,050,719
Human Resources (FTEs)
2016-17 2017-18 2018-19
60 60 60

Planning Highlights

Continue to:

  • provide ongoing training to existing staff and Board members to ensure that they are provided with current and relevant information as well as the resources to continuously improve their skills to perform their duties;
  • enhance consistency in financial management practices and ensure compliance with central agency policy and directives through semi-annual remote monitoring and cyclical on-site monitoring exercises;
  • improve staff and Board member awareness and training of access to information and privacy legislation to ensure compliance with legislated timeframes for each;
  • enhance consistency in corporate services and ensure compliance with central agency policy and directives through annual monitoring;
  • strengthen human resource capacity in areas such as talent management and values and ethics; and
  • seek opportunities to leverage IT solutions to program delivery.

Section III - Supplementary Information

Future-Oriented Statement of Operations

The Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations provides a general overview of the PBC's operations. The forecast of financial information on expenses and revenues is prepared on an accrual accounting basis to strengthen accountability and to improve transparency and financial management.

Because the Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations is prepared on an accrual accounting basis, and the forecast and planned spending amounts presented in other sections of the Report on Plans and Priorities are prepared on an expenditure basis, amounts may differ.

A more detailed Future-Oriented Statement of Operations and associated notes, including a reconciliation of the net costs of operations to the requested authorities, can be found on the Board's Web site.

Future-Oriented Condensed Statement of Operations

For the Year Ended March 31, 2016 (dollars)
Financial information 2015−16 Forecast Results 2016–17 Planned Results Difference (2016–17 Planned Results minus 2015–16 Forecast Results)
Total expenses 59,531,361 61,490,486 1,959,125
Total revenues 3,995,000 4,230,000 235,000
Net cost of operations before government funding and transfers 55,536,361 57,260,486 1,724,125

Planned results for the fiscal year are $1.7 million higher than 2015-16. The changes for this planning period include:

  • an estimated increase of $1.8 million in salaries related to collective agreements; and
  • an estimated increase of $0.1 million in non-salaries; offset by an increase of $0.2 million in revenues.

Supplementary Information Tables

The supplementary information tables listed in the 2016-17 Report on Plans and Priorities are available on the PBC's Web site.

Tax Expenditures and Evaluations

The tax system can be used to achieve public policy objectives through the application of special measures such as low tax rates, exemptions, deductions, deferrals and credits. The Department of Finance Canada publishes cost estimates and projections for these measures annually in the Tax Expenditures and Evaluations publication. The tax measures presented in that publication are the responsibility of the Minister of Finance.

Section IV - Organizational Contact Information

Regular mail:
Public Affairs
410 Laurier Avenue West
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0R1

Appendix - Definitions

Appropriation: Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.

Budgetary expenditures: Include operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.

Departmental Performance Report: Reports on an appropriated organization's actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Reports on Plans and Priorities. These reports are tabled in Parliament in the fall.

Full-time equivalent: Is a measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person year charge against a departmental budget. Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.

Government of Canada outcomes: A set of 16 high-level objectives defined for the government as a whole, grouped in four spending areas: economic affairs, social affairs, international affairs and government affairs.

Management, Resources and Results Structure: A comprehensive framework that consists of an organization's inventory of programs, resources, results, performance indicators and governance information. Programs and results are depicted in their hierarchical relationship to each other and to the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute. The Management, Resources and Results Structure is developed from the Program Alignment Architecture.

Non-budgetary expenditures: Include net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.

Performance: What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve and how well lessons learned have been identified.

Performance indicator: A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.

Performance reporting: The process of communicating evidence-based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision making, accountability and transparency.

Planned spending: For Reports on Plans and Priorities (RPPs) and Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs), planned spending refers to those amounts that receive Treasury Board approval by February 1. Therefore, planned spending may include amounts incremental to planned expenditures presented in the Main Estimates.

A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their RPPs and DPRs.

Plans: The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.

Priorities: Plans or projects that an organization has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired Strategic Outcome(s).

Program: A group of related resource inputs and activities that are managed to meet specific needs and to achieve intended results and that are treated as a budgetary unit.

Program Alignment Architecture: A structured inventory of an organization's programs depicting the hierarchical relationship between programs and the Strategic Outcome(s) to which they contribute.

Report on Plans and Priorities: Provides information on the plans and expected performance of appropriated organizations over a three-year period. These reports are tabled in Parliament each spring.

Results: An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization's influence.

Statutory expenditures: Expenditures that Parliament has approved through legislation other than appropriation acts. The legislation sets out the purpose of the expenditures and the terms and conditions under which they may be made.

Strategic Outcome: A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization's mandate, vision and core functions.

Sunset program: A time-limited program that does not have an ongoing funding and policy authority. When the program is set to expire, a decision must be made whether to continue the program. In the case of a renewal, the decision specifies the scope, funding level and duration.

Target: A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.

Voted expenditures: Expenditures that Parliament approves annually through an Appropriation Act. The Vote wording becomes the governing conditions under which these expenditures may be made.

Whole-of-government framework: Maps the financial contributions of federal organizations receiving appropriations by aligning their Programs to a set of 16 government-wide, high-level outcome areas, grouped under four spending areas.

Supplementary Information (Tables)

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