To encourage inmates to maintain and develop family and community ties through written correspondence and telephone communication, consistent with the principle of protection of the public, staff members and offenders.
Normally, letters to and from inmates shall not be read. However, pursuant to subsection 94(1) of the Corrections and Conditional Release Regulations, the Institutional Head or designate may, in writing, authorize a staff member to read correspondence when he or she believes on reasonable grounds, that:
the correspondence between the inmate and the member of the public contains or will contain evidence of an action that
would jeopardize the security of the penitentiary or the safety of an individual; and
interception of the inmate's correspondence with the member of the public is the least restrictive alternative available
in the circumstances.
When letters are intercepted and read, this reading and the reasons for it shall be recorded. The inmate shall be promptly advised, in writing, thereof and given the opportunity to make representations, except in situations where the information would adversely affect an on-going investigation. In this case the inmate would be advised of the reasons and given an opportunity to make representations once the investigation is completed.
When letters are read, the Institutional Head or designate shall authorize the following measures to be taken, as applicable:
letters considered unfit for delivery shall normally be returned to the sender;
the original letter or a copy may be retained by the institution, depending on the circumstances;
any retention shall be duly recorded and the reason for it stated. When prevented from communicating with a person, the
inmate shall be promptly informed, in writing, of the reasons, and shall be given the opportunity to make representations. The
sender shall be notified and advised of the reason, unless the purpose of the retention would be thwarted.
Correspondence between an inmate, or the person or group representing him or her and a person listed in Annex "A" is privileged and shall be forwarded unopened to the addressee.
The Institutional Head or designate may authorize the correspondence to be opened and read in accordance with the considerations of paragraphs 9 and 10 if he or she is satisfied that there are reasonable and probable grounds to believe that the communication will not be or is not properly the subject of a privilege, and if conditions as outlined in subparagraphs 8 a. and b. exist. The person intercepting the privileged correspondence should treat the information contained therein as confidential.
National Headquarters shall be responsible for the selection, installation and maintenance of a national inmate telephone system.
Access to telephones, through an inmate telephone system, should be provided, on a fair and consistent basis, to help maintain family and community ties and to provide a direct link with families in the event of an emergency. To ensure consistency, standards for inmate access to telephones and the use of an inmate telephone system are provided in Annex "B".
Telephone calls between inmates and members of the public may be intercepted (interception is defined as the listening to and/or recording of a conversation by some mechanical devices) if both of the criteria outlined in subsection 94(1) of the Corrections and Conditional Release Regulations are met, and in accordance with Commissioner's Directive 575, entitled "Interception of Communications Related to the Maintenance of Institutional Security".
The telephone monitoring system provides the Institutional Head or designate with the ability to manage, supervise and control inmate access to the inmate telephone system and its use for communication with members of the public.
Telephone communication is a part of the overall program of reintegration into the community, similar to visits and temporary absences.
Telephone calls for humanitarian purposes, such as illness, death in the family, or birth of a child, shall normally be provided without delay.
An inmate may be prevented from communicating with members of the public by mail or telephone when:
the Institutional Head or designate believes, on reasonable grounds, that the safety of any person, both in the institution
and the community would be jeopardized; or
the Institutional Head or designate is satisfied that the intended recipient of the communication, or the parent or guardian
of an intended recipient who is a minor, does not want to receive communications from the inmate.
Where an inmate's application to have a telephone number added to his or her call allow list is disallowed or an approved telephone number is blocked, pursuant to paragraph 20, the inmate shall be promptly advised of the reasons, in writing, by the Institutional Head or designate, and shall be given an opportunity to respond.
Telephone calls to those identified in Annex "A" as authorized privileged correspondents, shall normally be granted. Such calls shall be provided, subject to operational constraints, during normal business hours. Inmates are required to provide reasonable notice, of no less than 24 hours, of their wish to communicate by telephone with privileged correspondents. However, the Institutional Head or designate may decide, depending on the circumstances, that the reasonable notice is not required.
Calls between inmates and privileged correspondents are normally confidential. They may however be subject to interception if both of the conditions stipulated in subsection 94(2) of the Corrections and Conditional Release Regulations are met and in accordance with Commissioner's Directive 575.
Should the Institutional Head or designate determine the need to restrict access to telephone communication with privileged correspondents, he or she shall communicate the rationale for the decision in writing to the inmate and to the person concerned. Copies shall be forwarded to Regional and National Headquarters.
Inmates or the recipients of the calls shall normally be responsible for the cost of telephone calls.
The Institutional Head or designate may authorize the use of government telephone network lines by inmates for emergency situations such as serious family illness or death, or for any other special circumstance.