What is Section 84?
Section 84 is part of the Corrections and Conditional Release Act and reads as follows:
84. Where an inmate who is applying for parole has expressed an interest in being released to an aboriginal community, the Service shall, if the inmate consents, give the aboriginal community
(a) adequate notice of the inmate’s parole application; and
(b) an opportunity to propose a plan for the inmate’s release to, and integration into, the aboriginal community.
84.1 Where an offender who is required to be supervised by a long-term supervision order has expressed an interest in being supervised in an aboriginal community, the Service shall, if the offender consents, give the aboriginal community
(a) adequate notice of the order; and
(b) an opportunity to propose a plan for the offender’s release on supervision, and integration, into the aboriginal community.
Does Section 84 apply to me?
Section 84 applies to all Aboriginal inmates working on parole plans and it does not necessarily mean that you must return home to your home community. Sometimes the homes community where you spent your time is no longer an option for a variety of reasons.
What Section 84 is not
(The FACTS Verses the Myth)
A Special Type of Release
– No, Section 84 is not a special type of release. In fact, all the standard forms of release are still applicable including Day Parole, Statutory Release, Warrant Expiry and Work Release. You must be able to qualify for some type of Release. To qualify for release and be successful in obtaining it also means that you should have completed the majority of your correctional plan and thus gained support from the institution for your release.
Section 84 gets me released from jail sooner
– No, again, Section 84 consultation can occur with the community in any time throughout your sentence but you still must be able to qualify for some type of release in order to get out of jail. So Section 84 does not get you out of jail sooner – YOU GET YOU OUT OF JAIL SOONER by completing your correctional plan and working in a good and healthy way towards your release. Section 84 consultations support you in the process of moving through the system.
Section 84 is a Release to my Community
– YES and No – Section 84 may develop into a release to your community if a private home placement is available however, you are still accountable to the Correctional Service of Canada for the remainder of your sentence. So if you are unable to secure a private home placement in your community and you have a condition of residency as part of your release – you will spend time at a Community Resident Facility like Circle of Eagles Lodge in Vancouver and plan the remainder of your return to your community from there. So NO – Section 84 is not a release to your community without proper plans in place to accommodate your living arrangements in that community.
My Participation in Section 84 is a YES or NO Answer
-No Section 84 is not just your YES to participate in the process – Section 84 is a commitment to yourself, the community and National Parole Board that your will continue to work on yourself and whatever issues you might have at the community level with the guidance of the Aboriginal Community. Aboriginal Communities in this process take their commitment to help very seriously as they recognize that the time spent with you in turn help everyone.
How Can I Apply for Section 84 and what is the Process?
If you make the decision that Section 84 is a process that your want to participate in there is a means by which you should apply;
1. If you are at a federal institution – please complete a letter to your community – telling them who your are, where you are and a little bit about yourself including your long term plans. – Remember not all of us can write great letters so if you are one of those that can’t, please ask the native Liaison at the institution, staff at the CRF or ask to see the Aboriginal Community Development Officer – Laura Baird. Anyone of these people can help you with your letter.
2. Once your letter is complete – You should contact the Aboriginal Community Development Officer – Laura Baird through your Native Liaison, Elder or Institutional Parole Officer. She will then come and get your letter and present it in most cases in person to your community. You must also have signed a Disclosure of Information Form – so that the Aboriginal Community Development Officer has your permission to discuss you in the community.
3. You are responsible for getting a copy of your letter to your institutional Parole Officer which he or she will keep on file.
4. Once your Section 84 letter has been presented to the Community or the appropriate Section 84 Committee – A decision will be made as to whether or not the Community can enter into a Section 84 consultation with you. If they can they will advise you in writing and prepare a community plan as per the Section 84 Act and present that to you in person for your review.
5. Once your have signed the Community Plan it is placed on OMS as a Section 84 Community Assessment and clearly documents what services, support and programs you will be expected to participate in at the Community level. The Section 84 CA is also used for all release planning documentation at the present time and in the future if your chose to continue Section 84 at a later time.
6. Section 84 Community Plans include programs, services and expectations to participate in Aboriginal Community Programs that are regarded to be of the same merit as CSC programs. Your Commitment to these programs is just as important once you get to the Community.
7. Once you make plans to appear in front of the National Parole Board
– Your Section 84 Community Plans will be included in your paperwork for review. So it is important to remember to ask someone from the community to appear at your hearing even if it is just as an observer.
For More Information Contact:
Aboriginal Community Development Officer
Section 84 – Vancouver/Area