Indigenous inmate takes prison security tests to the Supreme Court

Friday, 13 October 2017, 02:46:31 PM. The Supreme Court of Canada will hear the case Thursday of a Métis inmate who says the tests that help determine prison security level and parole decisions discriminate against Indigenous offenders.
The Supreme Court of Canada will hear the case Thursday of a Métis inmate who claims the tests that determine prison security level and parole decisions discriminate against Indigenous offenders. Jeffrey Ewert, who is serving a life sentence for second-degree murder and attempted murder, has been in the federal system for 30 years in prisons across the country. He says the tools used to measure potential risks for violence are unreliable for Indigenous prisoners, affecting their liberty and breaching their constitutional rights. According to documents filed with the Supreme Court, the appellant says relying on test scores that are not scientifically known to be accurate for Indigenous inmates does not afford them "equal protection and benefit of the law." Corrections Canada failing younger inmates, report finds "While there is no evidence that Correctional Service Canada's use of these tools is unreasonable in respect to non-Aboriginal inmates, their use in respect to Aboriginal inmates overshoots the objective because unreliable tests likely result in unreliable public safety risk assessments," the records state. Assessments called valid The correctional service argues the assessments are used regularly by psychologists in the private and public sectors around the world to expertly determine risk. "There are no empirical studies concluding that these tools are unreliable or invalid for use with Indigenous offenders," a document filed with the court reads. Data provided to...Read more
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