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Evaluation Report: The Section 81 Agreement between the Native Counselling Services of Alberta and the Correctional Services of Canada; The Stan Daniels Healing Centre

File #394-2-30

Evaluation Branch
Performance Assurance Sector
October 7, 2005


The evaluation team conducted qualitative analyses for open-ended interview questions, through which themes were created. Themes were generated for evaluation objectives where appropriate (relevancy, success, cost-effectiveness, implementation issues and unintended effects). These themes are presented in the Key Findings section.

Quantitative methods were used to profile the Centre's residents, to identify trends and to compare various characteristics with a matched cohort. Specifically, Chi-square analyses were used for within and between group comparisons on categorical variables (static and dynamic levels of intervention) while t-tests were used for similar comparisons on continuous variable (time to discretionary release). Survival analyses[37] were used to examine and compare between group differences where data were censored[38]. Outcome measures examined for between-group analyses were[39]: reintegration potential, positive decisions for discretionary release, length of time out in the community, and returns to federal custody (with and without a new offence). Similarly, within-group analyses comparative/outcome measures were those listed above, plus static and dynamic levels of intervention, criminal history, age at admission, and aggregate sentence.

Cost-effectiveness analyses were used to determine whether the Stan Daniels Healing Centre Section 81 Agreement is a cost-effective approach to achieving results. Cost-effectiveness analysis is a decision-oriented tool that simultaneously considers costs and effects. It is more cost-effective if one operation yields the same level of effectiveness as others for lower cost[40].

[37] Survival analysis is a statistical technique that estimates the time taken to reach some event and the rate of occurrence of that event.

[38] Observations are referred to as censored when the dependent variable of interest represents the time to a terminal event (reconviction), and the duration of the study is limited in time.

[39] Outcome measures are dependent on resident status (inmate, discretionary release, statutory release with residency), thus a positive parole decision was not examined for those already on parole at the time of the analyses.

[40] Levin and McEwan (2000). Cost-effectiveness analysis as an evaluation tool. International Handbook of Educational Evaluation.