Transforming Federal Corrections (Bill C-83)

Classification: Unclassified

Branch/Agency: CSC

Proposed Response:

If pressed:

Financial Implications:


On October 16, 2018, the Government of Canada introduced Bill C-83, An Act to amend the Corrections and Conditional Release Act and another Act. It received Royal Assent on June 21, 2019 and provisions came into force on November 30, 2019 to eliminate administrative and disciplinary segregation and to implement a new correctional interventions model.The reforms in C-83 also strengthen health care governance; better support victims in the criminal justice system; and consider the specific needs of Indigenous offenders.

Structured Interventions Units (SIUs)

SIUs allow inmates to be separated from the mainstream inmate population—providing the opportunity to maintain their access to rehabilitative programming, interventions, and mental health care. Inmates in an SIU:

Structured interventions and programming are available to inmates to address their specific risks and needs, with the goal of facilitating their reintegration into a mainstream inmate population as soon as possible. It is expected that SIUs will enhance correctional outcomes, as well as assist in reducing the rate of institutional violent incidents, resulting in a safer environment for staff, offenders and visitors.

Independent External Decision Makers (12)

Have been appointed by the previous Minister of Public Safety to decide cases of inmates placed in SIUs. The creation of these new positions respond to feedback received from stakeholders about the importance of external and independent oversight of the new SIU approach.


To prepare for the opening of the initial sites, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) recruited and hired operational and interventions staff to meet the needs of the SIUs. Recruitment continues to ensure that CSC will have the necessary staff to open additional SIUs in the future.

Considering Factors Unique to Indigenous Offenders

Bill C-83 introduced a legislated requirement for the CSC to ensure that systemic and background factors unique to Indigenous offenders are considered in all correctional decision-making.

Enhancements to Health Services

All inmates authorized for transfer to SIU will be referred for a health assessment. The assessment will focus on the inmate’s health status, and consideration of a referral for health services.

The health assessment process includes:


An evaluation of existing infrastructure within the ten proposed SIU sites was conducted. Most of the re-fits ranged from minor to moderate were necessary.

Majority of the work was carried out in the lead up to the opening of the SIUs on November 30, 2019. For some sites, there is work outstanding and mitigation plans are in place to ensure that the SIUs are operational.

The re-fits included additional yards, program, interview, and intervention space in order to permit the operation of SIUs to meet the legislative requirements for time out of cell and meaningful contact.


Prepared by: Jessica Martineau, Officer Parliamentary Relations, 613-943-1726

Approved by: Kirstan Gagnon, Assistant Commissionner, Communications & Engagement, 613-995-6867

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