Newsletter of the Human Services and Justice Coordinating Committee
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Human Services and Justice

October 2014

Message from the Co-Chair

The Provincial HSJCC has experienced a small flurry of changes in the past few months.  Joan Dervin, Regional Representative for the Champlain Regional HSJCC has retired from the Royal Ottawa Hospital, where she was the Director of Patient Care Services, Integrated Forensic Program. We would like to acknowledge and thank Joan for her hard work and dedication to the HSJCC.  Joan was the Co-Chair of the organizing committee for our conference in 2013, and she had once again agreed to work in that capacity, to allow us time to seek a replacement.  We are happy to report that we now have another experienced, insightful and knowledgeable conference committee co-chair: Lin Sallay, Program Director of LOFT Community Services.

Sandie Leith, my co-chair at the Provincial HSJCC, has indicated that she will be stepping down when her term ends in January 2015. Sandie’s “day job” is as the Director of Clinical Services, at CMHA Sault Ste. Marie Branch.  She has a wealth of experience, common sense, and an ability to remain calm in the midst of chaos.  I will really miss her critical (but kindly!) eye for details, her warmth and sense of humour.  On October 23, 2014, an email was sent out to the Provincial HSJCC network, asking that members from the human services and non-government sectors consider the opportunity to act as Co-Chair.

After providing a series of well-received and attended webinars, we took a break over the summer, but are actively planning the next one, scheduled to take place in November.  We are hoping to discuss a recent report, “Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: A Call to Action in Ontario”, prepared by the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Ontario Network of Expertise (FASD ONE).  This would allow us to expand on our March 2014 webinar, which provided an overview of acquired brain injury and FASD, and its prevalence in the criminal justice system.  Many thanks to Sue Khowessah, Provincial HSJCC Correctional Services representative, for forwarding this report to our attention.

Last month, we received a request from Dr. Angela Colantonio, Senior Scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, asking for support for her research team’s application for a CIHR Knowledge to Action Grant: “Creating Capacity on Traumatic Brain Injury Care for Criminalized Populations”.  Dr. Colantonio’s work on how traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects individuals who have come into contact with the justice system will be essential in ensuring that front-line service providers are better trained in TBI and can provide appropriate rehabilitation services to individuals. Her research proposal is to examine the facilitators and barriers to screening for brain injury and identify some of the best practices and techniques.  In light of the fact that Dr. Colantonio’s past and proposed research is congruent with the mandate of the HSJCC, we provided a letter of support.  If the project is successfully funded, we will share the results of her work with the HSJCC network, by webinar and in other formats.

Katie Almond
Co-Chair, PHSJCC
Revisiting ODSP Policy and an Update on Social Assistance 

At the September 2014 Provincial HSJCC meeting, there was a discussion around individuals who rely on the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) and have come into contact with the law. Individuals on ODSP who have been arrested or detained in remand are not to be disqualified from receiving income support but rather their ODSP income support is to be adjusted to account for the change in their costs while they are in a correctional facility. In other words, the full ODSP income supports are only temporarily suspended and the individual is not disqualified from receiving the full income support in the future. Once the individual is released, their ODSP income support resumes without requalification. For more information on this policy directive from the Ministry of Community and Social Services, click here.

More broadly, beginning this fall, several social assistance program rates will increase as outline in the 2014 Budget. These increases include a:

•    $30 increase (almost five per cent) for single individuals without children receiving Ontario Works.
•    one per cent increase for families receiving Ontario Works.
•    one per cent increase for individuals with disabilities who rely on the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP).
•    one per cent increase for various other rates, including Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities
•    $50 per month increase for the first person in each family under the Remote Communities Allowance with a $25 increase for each additional family member 

Although these increases are a good starting point in supporting the most vulnerable Ontarians, more is needed to ensure they have access to the appropriate services and supports. For the full announcement, click here.

Dorina Simeonov
Policy Analyst


Creating a trauma-informed justice system in Kenora-Rainy River

About 1,853 kilometres north of Toronto, in the Districts of Kenora and Rainy River, a Youth Justice Service Collaborative has formed to address the needs of justice-involved youth up to the age of 17. These youth require better treatment pathways to mental health and addictions services and successful integration into their communities in order to reduce recurring involvement with the justice system. 

The Collaborative has 53 active and informed members from diverse settings and sectors who meet monthly to plan an intervention that will meet the needs of these youth. The service providers represent 35 organizations such as Treaty 3 police (who have established a traditional system of policing and justice for the Treaty 3 Nation, in northern Ontario and eastern Manitoba), Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), crown attorney, probation, detention centres, youth justice, youth and adult addictions, youth mental health, court diversion, Friendship Centres, Chiefs Advisory Council, Treaty 3, education mental health leads, and child welfare.

In response to concerns about chronically re-offending youth, the Justice Service Collaborative has selected components of evidence-based/evidence-informed interventions that address successful integration of youth back in to their communities. Many re-offending youth have experienced trauma and loss. The Youth Justice Service Collaborative is creating a trauma-informed youth justice system to better understand the impacts of trauma on justice-involved youth. 

The Manitoba Trauma Informed Education Centre has been chosen by the Justice Collaborative to provide trauma training. Klinic Community Health Centre located in Winnipeg, MB will facilitate the sessions. Over the next eight months approximately 130 service providers will be trained. Intensive two-day workshops for youth justice partners will be offered and Elders have been engaged to provide support at the trainings. The training, to be held at Waashkootsi Nanaandawe'iyewigamig Healing Lodge at Obashkaandagaang First Nation, will build capacity in local service providers and awareness of the impact of trauma on individuals, families, and communities.

Members of the Youth Justice Service Collaborative also participated in Implementation Science training in September. The half-day session was provided to build implementation science knowledge and capacity in Service Collaborative members, and helped them finalize the components of the intervention.

Next up for the Youth Justice Service Collaborative is providing training on the GAIN-SS to support agencies to use the tool and help them screen for behavioural health disorders and addictions, which will inform potential pathways through the system. These training sessions will be planned in the next few months.   

For more information on the Kenora-Rainy River Justice Service Collaborative, visit

For more information on a Service Collaborative in your area, and a map of all 18 Service Collaboratives, click here.

Stephanie Sliekers
Communications Coordinator, Provincial System Support Program (PSSP)
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)

Circles of Support and Accountability

Hamilton, June 1994 - A small community group led by Harry Nigh, formed a small circle around Charlie Taylor, who was arriving in the city, having completed his prison sentence for sexual offending against children.

Toronto, November 1994 - Another community group led by Hugh Kirkegaard and Evan Heise, formed a small circle around Wray Budreo who, like Charlie Taylor, was arriving in the city having completed his prison sentence for sexual offending.

These two events marked the beginning of a model that has become known as circles of support and accountability.

Based on the assumptions that inclusion works better than exclusion, that behaviours on the part of many can be managed in the community and that support with accountability are key components in managing risk, the “circles” model or CoSA utilizes trained volunteers and staff in forming a circle around an individual who is returning to the community having been charged and convicted for sexual offending. The goal of the circles model is safe and healthy integration into a community where the individual is both supported and held accountable for their choices and patterns of behaviour. The mandate of “no more victims” is foundational. 

For more information, please feel free to contact:
Eileen Henderson at

Visit the HSJCC Website

Justice Issues

Canada's jails filled with victims of risk-averse bail system: report
Ottawa Citizen

Canadians misunderstand not-criminally-responsible verdicts, say experts
QMI Agency

Taming Disorderly People One Ticket at a Time: The Penalization of Homelessness in Ontario and British Columbia
Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice

The murky place where criminal law and mental health intersect
National Post

Developmental Disabilities

'A counterfeit friendship': mate crime and people with learning disabilities
The Journal of Adult Protection

(The null) Importance of police experience on intuitive credibility of people with intellectual disabilities
Research in Developmental Disabilities

Characteristics of aggression among persons with autism spectrum disorders
Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders

Brain Injury

Traumatic Brain Injury and Early Life Experiences among Men and Women in a Prison Population
Journal of Correctional Health Care

Longitudinal Predictors of Criminal Arrest after Traumatic Brain Injury: Results from the Traumatic Brain Injury Model System National Database
Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation

Traumatic Brain Injury, Neuroscience, and the Legal System

Mental Health

New head of Ontario Bar Association speaks out about depression
Toronto Star

The Enemy Is Neglect of Mental Illness

This Is What Developing Acute Schizophrenia Feels Like

Submit articles and events to the Editor, Trevor Tymchuk, at

Canadian prisoners' perceptions of correctional officer orientations to their occupational responsibilities
Journal of Crime and Justice

Social workers set up shop to help inmates released from Toronto South Detention Centre
Etobicoke Guardian

Suicidal prisoners shouldn't be in solitary for long periods, watchdog says
Toronto Star


Hamilton police looking for best strategies to deal with mentally ill
CBC News

Suicide by cop: implications for crisis (hostage) negotiations
Journal of Criminal Psychology

Criminal Record Check Disclosure Revised
Niagara Regional Police Service

Substance Use

CAMH’s Cannabis Policy Framework: Legalization with regulation
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health Blog

Public Acceptance for Drug Treatment in Lieu of Incarceration for Drug Offenders in Florida
Journal of Drug Issues

Do improvements in substance use and mental health symptoms during treatment translate to long-term outcomes in the opposite domain?
Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment


Can Personality Traits Affect Detention Length in a Forensic Institution?
Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice

Pseudologia fantastica: Forensic and clinical treatment implications
Comprehensive Psychiatry

Use and interpretation of routine outcome measures in forensic mental health
International Journal of Mental Health Nursing

Children and Youth

Self-perceptions and their Prediction of Aggression in Male Juvenile Offenders
Child Psychiatry & Human Development

Young People with Complex Needs in the Criminal Justice System
Research and Practice in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Young offenders with mental health problems in transition
The Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice


Upcoming Events

5th Annual Anishinabek G7 FASD Conference
November 4-6, 2014, Sudbury
Keynotes include:
Dr. Edward Riley, Director, Centre for Behavioral Teratology San Diego State University
Dr. Albert Chudley, Medical Director, Program in Genetics and Metabolism Professor, Department of Paediatrics and Child Health Department of Biochemistry and Medical Genetics University of Manitoba
Morgan Fawcett- Life With FASD
Liz & Jodee Kulp- LiveAbilities: Staying Safe in a Medical Health Crisis
Myles Himmelreich- Preparing for a Full Body Diagnosis

Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival
November 10-15, 2014, Toronto
The Festival investigates the facts and mythologies surrounding mental illness and addiction as presented by both Canadian and international filmmakers, as well as by visual and media-based artists. The festival provides filmmakers and artists with opportunities to exhibit work that may not otherwise be seen; facilitates discussion between artists and audiences on these cinematic and media representations; and increases awareness of, and advocacy for, mental health and addiction issues among the broader public.

Clients are Complex - Are You Prepared?
November 25, 2014, Peterborough
Learn to understand and work with complexity from a trauma-informed approach. Gain a better understanding of the various factors facing today's client in the changing world of human services.

2nd Annual National Correctional Services Healthcare Conference
November 27-28, 2014, Ottawa
Addressing the gaps, promoting multidisciplinary care and improving the continuum of care into the community.

More Event Listings

Useful Links

History of Madness in Canada
This is a permanent, public Canadian website, created to enhance critical thinking, heritage preservation and historical research in the fields of psychiatric medicine and mental health.
The site is run by a collective which includes Canadian, American and British scholars and activists from a variety of disciplines and backgrounds. We welcome national and international involvement from educators, researchers, mental health providers and psychiatric survivors. While we are currently operating mainly in English, we are committed to building a fully bilingual site.

International Neuroethics Society
Neuroethics studies the social, legal, ethical and policy implications of advances in neuroscience. With the unprecedented progress in the basic sciences of mind and brain and in the treatment of psychiatric and neurologic disorders, comes an expanding role of neuroscience into classrooms, courtrooms, offices and homes around the world.  A principle objective of the INS is to help the public understand the issues raised by this research and the powerful new tools being developed.

Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Collaborative for Change
The Collaborative for Change is a new, multi-dimensional Resource Center that shares information on mental health reforms developed by U.S. states involved with Models for Change: Systems Reform in Juvenile Justice and provides guidance for effectively implementing those reforms in new communities and states throughout the country.

FASD and the Justice System
Designed for justice system professionals and others who want to understand more about FASD. It provides information and resources about Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), including background information, case law, legal resources and strategies for effective intervention.

More Useful Links
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