Sections 81 and 84, federal corrections and the Indigenous community

The Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) encourages Indigenous communities to use the full potential of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (CCRA), specifically Sections 81 and 84.

Community organizations interested in entering into a Section 81 Agreement

My community or organization is interested in entering into a Section 81 Agreement. Where do we begin?

A community can start the application process to provide correctional services to Indigenous offenders, by writing an Expression of Interest. CSC will review the Expression of Interest and communicate directly with the community applicant.

The Expression of Interest should contain essential information that outlines the capacity of your community to enter into a Section 81 Agreement. This list outlines the information that you must include in the Expression of Interest:

  • the name of the organization or community applying (this should include the corporate and/or legal structure of the organization or community)
  • a description of the correctional services that are proposed for the care and custody of Indigenous offenders
  • who can apply to receive the services outlined above (e.g. men or women offenders, etc.)
  • a description of the Indigenous community's previous experience in the criminal justice field
  • how many offenders that the organization/community is proposing to accommodate
  • an outline of the implementation and operation funding requirements/needs
  • the proposed physical infrastructure and building plans that detail the physical layout of the facility, including interior and exterior details, and location, if a facility is proposed
  • the reason why the organization/community is applying for a Section 81 healing lodge
  • a brief description of the project reasoning/rationale

The Expression of Interest must also answer these questions:

  • Does the Indigenous community have financial requirements to further develop their statement of interest and formal proposal?
  • Are there finances available from the organization/community applicant?
  • Is funding allocated to this request via the applying organization/community?
  • What is the capacity to deliver and provide access to Indigenous and community programs and services?
  • Are there partnerships that the Indigenous community has or could establish to meet the offenders' needs?
  • What support exists from the surrounding communities, including letters of recommendation, testimonials and other relevant documentation?
  • What are the time and legal constraints related to the Indigenous community's participation, or any of its partners' participation, in the proposed agreement?
  • What is the legal ownership of property and land where the facility will be located, if a facility is proposed?

What happens after an Expression of Interest is submitted

Once you have submitted an Expression of Interest, CSC will contact you to discuss the next steps and the application process.

Section 81 agreements is a printable version of this information.

For more information

GL 541-2 Negotiation, Implementation and Management of CCRA Section 81 Agreements contains detailed information about opening a Section 81 healing lodge.

Section 84

Section 84 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (CCRA) applies to offenders who want to serve their eventual conditional or statutory release in an Indigenous community, or in an urban area with the support and direction of an Indigenous organization. It also applies to offenders who are subject to long-term supervision orders (LTSOs). The section dictates that if an inmate expresses an interest in being released to an Indigenous community, CSC must:

  • notify the community of their parole review or their statutory release date
  • give them a chance to propose a plan for the release and reintegration into that community

Early engagement with an Indigenous community is key for successful Section 84 release planning. It permits the community to become actively involved in the offender’s case. The community can identify what the offender must do to gain support and provide guidance to the offender.

Section 84 is part of the release process. The offender is informed of the Section 84 release process at their preliminary assessment stage of the intake assessment process. The purpose of starting the process earlier in the sentence is to allow inmates time and opportunity to get support from their community and/or organizations as soon as possible. Good communication, with the offender’s permission, can help the case management team (CMT) formulate a gradual and structured release plan that will be appropriate for the community and for the inmate.

Path Home: Release Planning Kit - Section 84 of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act outlines the process for Section 84 releases. It explains how it works and who is involved.

Reintegrating Indigenous offenders contains further information about how CSC works with Indigenous communities to take part in the release and reintegration planning process

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