Panel: The future of solitary confinement in Ontario and Canada

The Future of Solitary Confinement in Ontario and Canada:
A Panel Discussion

Thursday, November 22, 2018
4:00pm – 5:30pm
Learning Crossroads (CRX) / 141 Louis Pasteur
Room C020
University of Ottawa

While there is legislation currently before the Parliament of Canada that contains measures that the federal government claims will “eliminate segregation” through the creation of Structured Intervention Units (SIUs), recent reforms to solitary confinement policies and practices in Ontario jails and prisons made prior to the June 2018 provincial election are in limbo with the arrival of Premier Ford in office. Drawing on lived experiences of imprisonment, legal work and research, panellists will discuss what may lie ahead and what is at stake as the future of solitary confinement in both Ontario and Canada grinds forward.

Speakers include:

Yusuf Faqiri (Justice for Soli) – an advocate for criminalized and incarcerated persons living with mental health issues. Since the death of his brother Soleiman Faqiri at the hands of guards while imprisoned in segregation at the Lindsay super-jail in December 2016, he has called for transformative changes to the criminal justice system and imprisonment in Ontario.

Paul Champ (Lawyer, Champ & Associates) – a litigation lawyer whose work focuses on various public interest issues, including human rights behind bars. He represented Christina Jahn in her fight for justice against the Ontario Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services after she was placed in solitary confinement for over 200 days, which served as a lightning rod for reform. His law firm is currently trying to bring forward a class-action lawsuit to seek reparations for prisoners who endured deplorable conditions of confinement at the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre between May 2014 and June 2016.

Rachel Fayter (PhD Student, Criminology, University of Ottawa) – a researcher and activist whose present work seeks to improve the conditions of criminalized and incarcerated women, both inside and outside prison walls. As a former prisoner at Grand Valley Institution, she spent time in segregation.

Justin Piché, PhD (Associate Professor, Criminology, University of Ottawa) – a researcher, teacher and community organizer whose work focuses on penal reform and alternatives to incarceration. Through his scholarship and advocacy as a founding member of the Criminalization and Punishment Education Project, Director of the Carceral Studies Research Collective, and editor of the Journal of Prisoners on Prisons, he has called for the abolition of solitary confinement.

There are no costs to attend the panel,
but donations to the Justice for Soli campaign are welcomed.

Event Sponsors and Organizers:
Justice for Soli
Criminalization and Punishment Education Project
uOttawa Criminology Undergraduate Students’ Association