Ethnocultural Offenders in Federal Custody: Community Supervision Indicators among Women
Research Highlights: Women of Black and "Other" Ethnocultural Identities were more likely to be released from minimum security and less likely to experience a revocation than White or Indigenous women.
A full PDF is also available for download on the Government of Canada Publications.
Cat. No.: PS83-5/R446E-4-PDF
Research at a Glance: PDF
Why we did this study
The Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) has an ethnoculturally diverse offender population. Study 3 of a three-part study examined community supervision indicators, looking for differences among ethnocultural, White, and Indigenous offenders. This summary focuses specifically on the results for women. It is important to identify differences as they can inform CSC of areas for further examination and action to support a diverse offender population.
What we did
Offenders on their first term releases during fiscal years 2015/16 to 2016/17 with a minimum follow-up period of 8 months were identified (N = 753 women). Ethnocultural groups with over 20 individuals were examined, with the remaining groups combined as 'Other'. For women, due to sample size, this resulted in four groups: White, Black, Indigenous and Other Ethnocultural women offenders. Offender ethnocultural group is based on self-reported data collected as part of an intake assessment.
What we found
Table 1 presents a summary of the differences in results for Black, 'Other' ethnocultural and Indigenous women in comparison to those for White women. Women of Black and 'Other' ethnocultural identities were more likely to be released from a minimum security institution as compared with White women, while Indigenous women were less likely. Black women were more likely to be granted a period of discretionary release than White women and less likely to have a residency condition imposed upon statutory release. Overall, 'Other' ethnocultural women had comparable rates of discretionary release and were less likely to have a residency condition applied to statutory release. Indigenous women were less likely to be granted discretionary release and more likely to have residency condition applied to their statutory release.
Although 'Other' ethnocultural women were more likely to gain a period of employment within 8 months of release, they were less likely than White women to have a positive employment outcome. Black and Indigenous women were less likely to secure employment within 8 months than White women and less likely to have a positive employment outcome. Black and 'Other' ethnocultural women were less like to enroll in community self-management programs within 8 months of release, and less likely to complete such programs when enrolled as compared with White women. Although Indigenous women were more likely to enroll in a community self-management program, they were less likely to complete it.
Fewer than five Black or 'Other' ethnocultural women experienced a revocation, and no women from either group experienced a revocation with offence within 8 months of release. In comparison, 9% of White women and 16% of Indigenous women on discretionary release had a revocation within 8 months of release, as did 24% of White and 46% of Indigenous women on non-discretionary release. Further, 1.5% of White women and 7% of Indigenous women had a revocation with offence within 8 months of release (for any release type).
|Released from Min.||++||+||---||67|
|Residency – SR||†||†||+++||25|
|Any Positive Emp.||---||--||---||37|
|Note. Symbols denote trends in relation to comparison group (White offenders). ○ = +/-2%. - = -2% to -5%. -- = -5% to -10%. --- = -10% or less. + = +2% to +5%. ++ = +5% to +10%. +++ = +10% or more. † = Information suppressed due to n less than 5. Min. = Minimum security. Disc. Release = Discretionary Release. SR = Statutory Release. Emp. = Employment. SMP = Self-Management Program (community).|
What it means
CSC's offender population continues to be increasingly diverse. Understanding differences across various indicators, including those related to community supervision, can identify opportunities for CSC to enhance the support of offenders from different ethnocultural groups.
For more information
Correctional Service of Canada. (2022). Ethnocultural Offenders in Federal Custody: An Examination of Admission, In-Custody, and Community Supervision Indicators (Research Report R-446).Ottawa, Ontario: Correctional Service of Canada.
To obtain a PDF version of the full report, or for other inquiries, please e-mail the Research Branch.
You can also visit the Research Publications section for a full list of reports and one-page summaries.
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