Contributor(s)Jean-Claude Bernheim / Prison Insider


Canada’s extensive use of solitary confinement has been criticised. Among the 12,919 persons held in provincial and territorial prisons over the 2014/2015 period, a total of 31,765 days were spent in solitary confinement. In January 2015, the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association and the John Howard Society of Canada filed a joint Notice of Civil Claim to have the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) respect the United Nations standard minimum rules on solitary confinement. The federal government is currently studying a bill that would limit to 15 days the time spent in solitary confinement.

A similar claim has been filed by working prisoners to have their daily wage doubled.

Discrimination against Aboriginal Peoples (First Nations and Inuit) persists. These groups continue to be over-represented in prisons: more than 20 % of the prison population is Aboriginal, while the Aboriginal population in Canada is only 4 to 5 %.

The prison administration publishes its statistics as averages over yearly periods of 1 March to 30 April. The periods reported represent 1 March 2015 to 30 April 2016.

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Country population


/ World Prison Brief / Statistics Canada

Type of government

Constitutional monarchy

Human Development Index