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CRIM 2652
Amanda Glasbeek

Christy (Ka Yik) Leung 210274157 T.A. Christina Hollingshead (Tutorial- 11:30a.m.) Part 1 Sentencing Circle The sentencing circles were first developed in various areas of Yukon, Canada communities. It was intended for community residents and Territorial justice personnel, and judges from the Territorial Court of Yukon to engage in sentencing circles. The participants include defence lawyer, the judge, prosecutor, police officer, the victim and the offenders as well as their families, and community residents, where they face each other sitting in a circle to engage in a discussion. Through the discussions, the ones within the circle will reach a consensus about the best way to dispose of the case. The sentencing circles takes into account of both goals of protecting the community and the rehabilitation and the offender’s punishment. The significant of the sentencing circle is that it is based on traditional Aboriginal healing practice which led to addressing the needs of communities, victims, and offenders through a process of reconciliation/restitution and reparation. Ideally, the sentencing circle’s fundamental principle is that the process used to select is more important than the actual sentence. Sentencing circles are only accessible to the offenders who plead guilty. It relies heavily on the community volunteers for the sentencing circle to succeed. In addition, the sentencing circles are in the best interest of both non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal people (such as offenders, victims as well as the community). Conditional Discharge Conditional Discharge occurs when the offender is place on probation with various conditions such as “to keep the peace and be of good behaviour”. When the offender is of good behaviour, he/she may be discharged from court with no records. Conditional discharges are faced with minimal probation. There are four types of conditional release that are available for inmates who are incarcerated in federal or provincial/territorial correctional institutions. Firstly, temporary absence occurs when the offender is granted by the institution which can also begin after admission and may extend to the end of the sentence. It may also involve ankle brace or some sort of electronic monitoring device. Secondly, day parole is granted by parole boards where it is accessible during the one-sixth point in a sentence; but it all depends on the years of the offender’s sentence. Thirdly, full parole is similar to day parole which is also granted by parole boards but what differs is that it is available at the one-third point in sentence. Fourthly, statutory release is granted to federal inmates by the Correctional Service of Canada and it is accessible at the two-thirds point in a sentence. All in all, these are various types of conditional release at different stages of the sentence but unfortunately not all applications will succeed. Denunciation Denunciation uses sentencing as an expression of moral blaming. It expresses society’s disapproval of an offender’s behaviour. It is one of the sentencing principles of retribution (social aspect). It may also be a possible justification for the nuisance of the offender’s sentence. Denunciation requires deterrence other than retribution to justify more harsh sentences. It is similar to the statements of society’s values. Denunciation is a term used by the civilians to in forms a public officer whose duty is to prosecute offenders who have committed a crime. Also, the conditional sentence provides significant denunciation and deterrence. Denunciation is also the act of accusing another of a crime prior to a prosecutor. It occurs when the sentence is able to notify the public that the offence is serious then stating that the punishment is just. Family Violence Courts/Gladue Courts Family violence courts emerged in the 1900s, where trained prosecutor would assist family members. During that period of time, it was a work product framework which entails that police were making more arrests. The prosecution, arrest and sentencing rates were higher than usual. Criminal justice system began to adapt to women’s needs and accommodation in the system. Essentially, family violence courts focused on the safety of victims (men and women) and sought to address the factors which triggered the offender’s behaviour. Its aim was to break the cycle of family violence by providing programs and services to the offender prior to sentencing. The family violence court was able to produce better result for the victim’s family violence as well as the reduction of family violence to reoccur. Ursel looked at the mandatory charging and zero protocol of direct charging specifically in Manitoba. There were 92% of all reported cases that led to a charge and at the same time Manitoba had the highest rate in Canada. She explained that the more women who goes through the criminal justice system, the more the court adapts to the criminal needs and vice versa. She continued with work culture and how that builds more trusts and the use of the criminal justice system is part of a broader web and set of strategies that women are able to use when dealing with family violence. Gladue Courts are the practices of respecting Indigenous people. The Aboriginal Services of Toronto works with judges to establish some kind of system where the principles are implemented. This expanded since 2000 to two sessions a week and it allows Aboriginal offenders who appear in court to use the court to their advantage. The court will not question whether or not the victim/offender is Aboriginal but themselves. Gladue Courts created a new atmosphere and environment instead of an alienating territory. In addition, the court keeps a list of all Aboriginal Service, communities, and facilities and it mostly focuses on sentencing. It allows Aboriginals to be recognized and treated with more respect. The court also extended itself to bail hearings in light of removing institutional biases. LaPrarie thought that the sentencing law may be very well intended but will have no substantive affects. Her explanation heavily relied on the overrepresentation of Aboriginal people and that the ones who were incarcerated have a tendency to be young, under educated, unemployed and/or poor. Family Violence Court and Gladue Courts have domestic disputes as well as interpersonal cases that deal with victims and offenders. Both are attempting to remove systemic racial bias as well as gender discrimination. YOA/YCJA The Young Offender’s Act (YOA) maintains the idea that young people should be treated separately from adults. There are four principles in the YOA. Firstly, the act should hold young people more accountable for their behaviours. Secondly, it is to promote protection from young offenders. The first couple of principles demonstrate criminal justice system as being too soft on crime. Third principle is to recognize the impact of the criminal justice system on the young people. Fourthly, it is to protect the legal rights of young people. The third and fourth principles draws too much concern dealing with young people. These four principles made significant changes for youths in court. It introduces the idea of alternative measures and stresses on the issue of removing youths from the criminal justice system. Furthermore, the YOA has diversion program court options which may minimize the impact of criminal justice system and it is in the best interest of both youth and society. YOA gives young offenders due process rights such as the right to cautions, legal control and the rights to choosing their parental care. The legal rights for youth are protected and guarded rights that the youth did not have before. “The Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA) is intended to promote the protection of the public by preventing crime by addressing the circumstances underlying the behaviour, rehabilitating and reintegrating young person in society; and providing meaningful consequences for the offence to promote protection of society.” (s.3) Youths should be accountable for their actions but punishments should be less harsh than adults. The YCJA replaced the Young Offender’s Act in April 1 , 2003 where it provides the legislative framework for a fairer and effective justice system for youths. Since YCJA, there was a reduction of cases in youth court. Drugs and criminal offense substantially decreased during the first year. The problem with YOA was that incarceration was overused and Canada had the highest youth incarceration. YOA did not ensure that the young person would be able to reintegrate in the community after the release. The process after the age of 17 would be transferred to adult court which resulted in unfairness and delay. Overall, the YOA does not give enough interests and concerns to the victims. The YCJA contains preamble and a declaration of principles to the youth justice system. Probation/Conditional Sentence of Imprisonment Probation was first used a correctional strategy but it remains mostly used as an alternative to confinement. It is a versatile sentencing option designed to provide supervision for offenders in the community. This may be used in conjunction with a period of incarceration in a provincial correctional facility. Some of the ways that adult offenders can be on probation are as part of a conditional discharge, suspended sentence, intermittent sentence or as a sentence as its own (as it is most common) or following a prison term of less than two years. Probation can include various dispositions such as fine, imprisonment for a term of up to two years less a day, intermittent sentence and/or conditional sentence. The conditions of probation includes: keep the peace and be of good behaviour, appear before the court when asked to do so by the court an
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