UN Slams Canada's Treatment of Mentally Ill Prisoners

Friday, June 1, 2012

June 1, 2012 - In recommendations released earlier today, the UN Committee against Torture slammed Canada’s treatment of prisoners with mental health issues. The Committee recommends that Canada increase the capacity of mental health treatment centres, abolish the use of solitary confinement for persons with serious or acute mental health issues, and otherwise ensure that solitary confinement is limited and subject to judicial oversight.

The Committee’s findings echo those found in our report, Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading? Canada’s Treatment of Federally-Sentenced Women with Mental Health Issues. The IHRP provided this report to the Committee in advance of its consideration of Canada, while similar concerns were also raised by the Canadian Human Rights Commission in its submissions.

The director of the IHRP, Renu Mandhane, wrote an article in the HuffingtonPost that calls upon the government to act swiftly on these recommendations.  It is available here.  She was also quoted in an article in the June 3rd edition of the Toronto Star, here.