The difference between provincial jails and federal prisons

- October 12th, 2012

There seems to be some confusion around the definition of a provincial jail and a federal prison. I’ve been writing about both a lot in recent weeks in an effort to ensure people have the facts about inmate populations in federal prisons, provincial jails and remand centres and on the inaccurate predictions we heard about exploding inmate populations.
Provincial jails, youth corrections facilities and remand centres are owned and operated by the provinces.
Adults are sentenced to provincial jails when they receive sentences of less than two years. All inmates in remand awaiting the outcome of their court cases are housed in provincial jails or in remand centres.
remand
Federal prisons are owned and operated by the federal government. They are designed for those serving sentences of two years or more. There are maximum, medium and minimum-security federal facilities, including the so-called Club Feds.
Federal prison populations are slightly below capacity right now. Inmate populations at federal prisons did not explode by the thousands as predicted by critics of the federal government’s tough-on-crime agenda.
By contrast, provincial jails are overcrowded, largely because of a growing remand population. More than half of inmates in provincial institutions across Canada are on remand — they’re awaiting the outcome of their court case.
In Manitoba, two-thirds of provincial inmates are on remand. It’s a huge problem. There are more remand inmates at Headingley Jail than inmates serving their sentences.
Manitoba Justice data shows it’s taking longer for remand inmates to get through the court system, which is contributing to the overcrowding.
For some reason, there are some who don’t understand the difference between a provincial jail and a federal prison. And when I write about both, they get confused and accuse me of contradicting myself.
Hopefully this clears it up for those who don’t understand the difference between the two types of institutions.

Categories: Politics

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2 comments

  1. Hmm says:

    Speed up the court process as it is obvious they are stalling and at the end they use that to their advantage NOT to get fed time. Speed up the court process in order to get a conviction and send them on their way………..

  2. winnipegman says:

    Every citizen should see how the court system is abused by all three levels. Defense, Prosecution, and law enforcement. Swift justice means years in this country now. Not swift, and not fair to any one.

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