(Update) Changes to Correctional Facilities Visits to Prevent COVID-19

The Covid Chronicle

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Correctional Facilities Take Further Acton to Prevent Covid-19
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​ To help further prevent COVID-19 from impacting inmates and staff at correctional facilities, 41 people who are serving intermittent sentences in the province’s four adult correctional facilities will be released on temporary absence.

An intermittent sentence is ordered by a court and allows a person to serve a sentence in small blocks of time – usually on weekends – instead of all at once.

The person serving the sentence continues to live at home and work in the community most of the time so they can work and fulfill family obligations. Under the Criminal Code, a judge can impose an intermittent sentence if the term of imprisonment is 90 days or less.

This health protection measure is being made with the guidance and advice of public health officials. This measure is allowed under the Nova Scotia Correctional Services Act, and is in effect until further notice.

On March 15, Correctional Services closed its facilities to all visitors until further notice.

Correctional Services works closely with public health officials to ensure plans are in place at all times to mitigate the spread of any contagious virus or disease in the province’s correctional facilities.

Additional Resources:
Provincial Government Public Health Website: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus

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Update: JUSTICE–All Visits to Correctional Facilities Suspended to Prevent COVID-19
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In the interest of the health and safety of inmates, their families, Correctional Services staff and the public, Nova Scotia’s correctional facilities will be closed to all visitors until further notice, effective immediately.

Lawyers who need to speak with their clients, who are in custody in correctional facilities, should contact the facility after noon on Monday, March 16, to arrange alternative methods of communication.

During this time, inmates will be able to make extra phone calls.

These public health safety measures apply to the Nova Scotia Youth Centre in Waterville, and the province’s four adult correctional facilities: the Cape Breton Correctional Facility in Sydney; the Central Nova Correctional Facility in Dartmouth; the Northeast Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Priestville, Pictou Co. and the Southwest Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Yarmouth.

These safety measures are being made with the guidance of public health officials and will be reassessed on a daily basis. Nova Scotia Correctional Services works closely with public health officials to ensure plans are in place at all times to mitigate the spread of any contagious virus or disease in the province’s correctional facilities.

Additional Resources:
Provincial Government Public Health Website: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus

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Changes to Correctional Facilities Visits to Prevent COVID-19
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In the interest of the health and safety of inmates, their families, Correctional Services staff and the public, Nova Scotia’s correctional facilities will be closed to volunteer organizations until further notice, effective immediately.

Family and friend visits to inmates will also be restricted to non-contact visits effective immediately. Non-contact visits mean that an inmate and the person visiting are separated by a glass partition and use a phone system to talk to one another.

During this time, inmates will be able to make two free phone calls each week to their friends and family.

These public health safety measures apply to the Nova Scotia Youth Centre in Waterville, and the province’s four adult correctional facilities: the Cape Breton Correctional Facility in Sydney; the Central Nova Correctional Facility in Dartmouth; the Northeast Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Priestville, Pictou Co. and the Southwest Nova Scotia Correctional Facility in Yarmouth.

There are no changes, at this time, to the protocols for visits by lawyers.

These safety measures are being made with the guidance of public health officials and will be reassessed on a daily basis. Nova Scotia Correctional Services works closely with public health officials to ensure plans are in place at all times to mitigate the spread of any contagious virus or disease in the province’s correctional facilities.

Additional Resources:
Provincial Government Public Health Website: https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus

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