So, we have a new, purportedly progressive government in Canada.
In my own contacts with the Liberals and NDP during the Conservative mandate, I found their Public Safety critics, well, critical of Tory policies. As an example, they found the 2013 cuts to inmate pay and allowances regressive and counter to effective corrections.
This would appear to bode well for policy in the Trudeau era.
Well, not necessarily.
While the Liberals were in power I found them almost as regressive as the Conservatives. They didn’t actually weaken the legislation as the Conservatives have but they showed little or no appetite for legislative or policy improvements. They displayed a public poster of little sympathy for offender rights.
There is little evidence that this worm has turned.
I note that neither the Liberals nor NDP had anything to say on criminal justice during the campaign, except that the NDP pledged to add 500 police officers.
I did not recently fall off the cabbage truck so I know that political parties are hesitant to be perceived as acting contrary to engrained public attitudes, nay biases. I appreciate that subtle changes are the preferred route.
That said, I believe that so much damage has been done to effective rehabilitation and reintegration in Canada that the new Government will have to brave public approbation to make necessary repairs.
Film at 11.