Institutional Security

CSC provides a safe and secure place where offenders can focus on changing their behaviour and becoming law-abiding citizens.

Searching and Drug Prevention

Preventing and reducing the number of contraband items and illicit substances in correctional institutions is a priority for CSC.

As such, thorough search procedures are in place at all CSC institutions across the country. Staff members, contractors, visitors, volunteers, and delivery people are all searched using different methods, which may include metal detector, ION scanners (which detect drugs), x-ray machines, drug detector dog teams, and visual inspections. Cell searches and offender drug testing are also carried out regularly within the institution, while vehicle searches and regular perimeter patrol are used outside.

To make searches easier on everyone, visitors should make sure that any bags or purses brought into the institution are as free from clutter as possible.

Tips from the public about contraband can be made by speaking with correctional employees or by calling the CSC tipline at 1-866-780-3784.

Looking for more information? Watch the Don’t Risk It! Keeping Drugs Out video or consult the Commissioner's Directives on Searching of Staff and Visitors, Searching of Inmates or the Detector Dog Program.

Security Intelligence

The Security Intelligence Program is the heart of CSC's intelligence and information network. The program allows all levels of the organization to receive and share vital information with partner agencies, provincially, nationally and internationally. This provides correctional managers with timely, accurate and relevant information which helps them make strategic decisions and adjustments to address threats and risks before they turn into a crisis.

Drug Prevention

Preventing and reducing the use of illicit substances by offenders in correctional institutions is a priority for CSC.

Correctional officers at the main entrances of institutions use metal detectors and ION scanners to ensure no drugs or drug paraphernalia enter the institution. Trained drug detector dog teams are also used. Cell searches and offender urinalysis testing are carried out regularly to help eliminate drugs in institutions.

Looking for more information? Consult the Commissioner's Directive on the Detector Dog Program.

Dynamic Security

Interaction between staff and offenders (dynamic security) is an important part of preventing violence. Ongoing observation and interaction let staff members gauge the climate of the institution and notice changes in offenders' behaviour. They develop a level of trust and confidence that make it easier for offenders to share intelligence information with them.

Looking for more information? Consult the Commissioner's Directive on Dynamic Security.


Offenders are generally placed in segregation as a precautionary safety measure. It is used to protect the segregated offender or to protect someone else in the institution.

Segregated offenders are given the same rights as other offenders, except where the security requirements or the limitations of being in a segregation unit make it impossible. Segregated offenders interact with staff, visitors and peers during their time out of their cell. Once the risk to the individual or the institution is no longer present, the offender can be returned to the general population.

Looking for more information? Consult the Commissioner's Directive on Administrative Segregation.

Offender Property

Depending on the level of security, some offenders are allowed to keep various items in their cell. Some examples include stationary, artwork and literature. To ensure the safety of the public, staff and offenders, as well as the security of the institution, all items entering or leaving the institution are thoroughly searched for contraband.

Items can be confiscated if they are used in a way that could jeopardize the safety of any person or the security of the institution.

Looking for more information? Consult the Commissioner's Directive on the Personal Property of Offenders.