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cell Count For Prisoners, ex-Prisoners & their families

cell

Count For Prisoners,

ex-Prisoners

cell Count For Prisoners, ex-Prisoners & their families

& their

families

pasan.org

WINTER 2016 - ISSUE #79

FREE

their families pasan.org WINTER 2016 - ISSUE #79 FREE In Memory of Pete Collins, 1962 -

In Memory of Pete Collins, 1962 - 2015

2016 - ISSUE #79 FREE In Memory of Pete Collins, 1962 - 2015 By Joan Ruzsa

By Joan Ruzsa

Pete Collins died on August 13th, 2015 in the palliative care unit at Millhaven, after a long and agonizing battle with cancer. He had requested a compassionate release so that he could spend his last days with his family, but the prison and the parole board chose to make him and the people who love him suffer until the bitter end. Pete served 32 years on a Life 25 prison sentence he received for killing Constable David Utman in 1983. Although he was pain- fully aware that he could never make up for having taken a life, Pete spent the better part of the last 3 decades trying to make amends for the harm and suffering he caused through his actions, and he exemplifies the human capacity for change. He was an idea machine, a prolific artist, writer and musician who was always working on dozens of projects. His work shone a light on corruption and hypocrisy. He was an ed- ucator, an advocate and a warrior for justice. He did more for the prisoners’ rights move- ment and other social justice movements from inside a prison cell than most people could hope to achieve in multiple lifetimes. Pete used his artwork and writing to highlight ongoing scandals and destructive policies within the government and the Cor- rectional Service of Canada, racist policing practices, and has called out community organizations for not living up to their man- dates. He was a staunch advocate for animal rights, as well as being a vegan. He fed the birds at Bath until the staff started killing the pigeons he was feeding, and cared for sick or injured birds and other animals. He painted kids’ faces at socials, donated artwork to local animal rescues for fundraising, created music in protest of Marine Land and other social issues. He supported violence against women campaigns and had done several art pieces and songs about the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. He wrote hundreds of articles, did countless radio interviews, pre- sented at conferences through audio record- ings, created short films and written policy papers. He also made shirts and artwork to commemorate Prisoners’ cont'd on page 6

Bulletin Board - 2 From Inside - 3 News on the Block - 4-5 Remembering
Bulletin Board - 2
From Inside - 3
News on the Block - 4-5
Remembering Pete Collins - 6
Health & Harm Reduction - 7
Resources & About PASAN - 8
43348021

2 // bulletin board

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

  women-identified folks (check out Concrete Blossoms, by the way)!
 

women-identified folks (check out Concrete Blossoms, by the way)!

 

drop-In

If you want to see a worker or attend a program put in a request to the Volunteer Coordinator or the Social Work Dept, or call us toll free at 1-866-224-9978

PASAN Clients Mondays 1:30-3:30pm See you then!

Provincial (ON) Men -

CECC

Groups/1on1: Sign up sheet; Request to Volunteer Coordinator; Call

 

fAMIly VISItAtIon

PASAN

F.E.A.T. for Children of Incarcerat- ed Parents was founded in 2011 to support the needs of the over 15,000 children in the Greater Toronto Area that have a parent in the criminal justice system. The Family Visitation Program Would you like to visit a family mem- ber in prison? F.E.A.T.’s Family Visita- tion Program provides transportation on weekends for you and an adult to correctional facilities in Southern On- tario. During the trip, you will be able to talk to friends and mentors, play games and watch movies. Youth un- der 18 can visit their family member for free! If you are interested in par- ticipating in the program, please call or email F.E.A.T. to register today! For more information or registration

please contact Jessica or Derrick Reid at:

CNCC

Groups/1on1: Sign up sheet; Request to Volunteer Coordinator; Call PASAN

HWDC

Groups/1on1: monthly; Call PASAN

MAPLEHURST

Groups/1on1: Run twice a month; Call PASAN

TEDC

Groups/1on1: Run twice a month; Call for a program on your unit or a 1on1 educational

TSDC

Put a request in with the Volunteer Coordinator or call for a program on your unit or a 1on1 educational

Provincial (ON) Women -

CECC

Call PASAN (no regular programming)

CNCC

Call PASAN (no regular programming)

VCW

1 st and 3 rd Wed – 1on1 Request to Social Work or Healthcare and call PASAN

Federal (ON) Men -

We try to visit each prison at least 3 times a year. We visit: Bath, Beavercreek Min/Med, Collins Bay, Joyceville Min/Med, Millhaven, Pittsburgh and Warkworth. We see people individually or in group settings and talk about HIV/AIDS, Hep C, Harm Reduction and Health Promotion. If you wish to know more or have HIV please contact us to find out when we will be at your institution.

Federal (ON) Women -

GVI

once a month; request to health care and call PASAN

info@featforchildren.org or 416-505-

 

5333

FOR MORE INFORMATION ON ANY OF THESE PROGRAMS CALL PASAN TOLL FREE AT: 1-866-224-9978

 

ContACt nuMberS

HIV+ ClIent SerVICeS

In order to be a client & access these services you need to have confirmed HIV+ status and be a prisoner or ex-prisoner (all times Eastern Standard time)

Phone Hours: Mon – Fri from 9-5, except Tuesday mornings and lunch from 12pm-

1pm

Drop-in – Mondays 1:30-3:30 (except holidays) Good food & 2 TTC tokens (for PASAN members only)

Nurse – 1 st & last Monday 1:30-3:30 every month

ID Clinic – 1 st & 3 rd Thursday 1:00-2:00 every month - for everyone.

Release Funds - $50 (twice a year max)

TTC Tokens – 2 per week Mon during drop- in 1:30-3:30pm.

Harm Reduction Materials – Mon – Fri from 9-5 (12-1pm we are closed), except Tuesday AM (Safer-Crack-Use-Kits, Safer-Needle- Use-Kits, Piercing Needles, Condoms, etc.) - for everyone.

Sometimes we and the phones are very busy so please keep trying!

About Cell Count

PASAN publishes ‘Cell Count’, a minimum of 4 issues per year. It is sent out for FREE to Clients & Prisoners in Canada. If you are on the outside or part of an organization, please consider a donation @ $20 per year. Issue #79 is our first issue after a year because we didn’t have the funds to run it until now. But we’re back with a whole new look and editor! See the PASAN page about who contributed to this issue.

Publisher: PASAN

526 Richmond St E, Toronto, ON M5A 1R3

Circulation: 1700+ - Recirculation: ??? All original artwork, poems and writings are the sole/soul property of the artist and author. Fair Dealing in the Canadian Copyright Act:

Sections 29, 29.1, 29.2: “Fair dealing for the purpose of research, private study, education, parody, satire, criticism, review, and news re- porting does not infringe copyright.”

edItorS note:

WONDERING WHERE THE PEN PAL SEC- TION IS? Don’t worry, it will be back in the next issue. In the meantime, if you would like to place a pen pal ad in the next issue, please send us your ad (2 or 3 lines only please). We may need to make them shorter depending on how many there are and there are no guarantees that your ad will run, it all depends on space. There will be information in the next issue about how to respond to ads. Stay tuned!

MoVIng?

We were getting about 75 Cell Counts sent back to us each mail-out labelled, ‘Not Here’. Please help us reduce our mailing expenses by letting us know of any address change, ASAP! Thank you for the consideration.

WorkloAd

PASAN has been around for 25 years now and over the years our client population has increased dramatically. As a result of this increase in workload, clients may not be able to spend as much time on the telephone with staff as we would like. The staff and volunteers are dedicated and committed and will continue to provide the best care possible. Thanks for your patience and understanding!

CAllIng All ArtIStS, WrIterS (fICtIon, non-fICtIon, SHort StorIeS, etC), IlluStrA- torS, CArtoonIStS, poetS, journAlIStS (AS- pIrIng or otHerWISe), And otHer CreAtIVe typeS:

We want your submissions! We get lots of let- ters from our readers telling us how much they love seeing all your work and they’re hungry for more. Send us your stuff and get published in Cell Count. When you send stuff in, please make sure you write a line in that gives us per- mission to publish your work. Also, let us know if you would like your work returned to you or sent on to someone else! Writers: We get a lot of great work sent in that we are unable to use because of very limited space. Apologies. Please consider the column width & keep articles/poems tight & to the point. Honestly, the first items to go in are the ones that fit nicely and leave space for others – quality and quantity! Also, let us know in writing if it’s ok to edit your work for grammar, spelling and so we can fit it in. We especially want more submissions from

If you are in any Federal/Provincial Inst or

Detention call us only with this #: Toll-free

1-866-224-9978

Cell Count SubS

Support Organizations:

Over the past 13 years this subscription list has grown from 700 to 1700 and all costs have more than doubled during this period. We receive less than 20 paid subs for ‘Cell Count’ from organizations Canada-wide, so we’ve had to pare-down our mailing list so we can get more copies inside where they are much needed. Cell Count may be viewed or downloaded

at pasan.org for free. We urge you to help us out by using this method if you do not need to have a physical subscription. Since we haven’t published anything until now, we may need you to re-send a subscription request. Please write 526 Richmond St E, To- ronto, ON M5A 1R3 or call 1-866-224-9978!

nurSe

A Nurse for PASAN members!

On the 1 st & last Monday of every month, 1:30

– 3:30

• Information and schedules regarding:

o

Medications

o

Nutrition

o

Community Health Resources

o

HIV understanding

o

Complications to HIV (eg Opportunistic

Infections)

• Assessments of emerging health issues

• Management of existing medical conditions or follow up(s)

• Communication with community! Institu- tional health care providers for access

• To clarify or communicate health infor-

mation and to advocate for health service

provisions

• Communicating findings and follow up plans and accountabilities with PHAs and PASAN primary workers (or delegates)

Please sign up at front desk

Id ClInIC

The Partners for Access and Identification (PAID) project opens doors and breaks down barriers for individuals who do not have a fixed

or permanent address.

The ID Clinics are held at PASAN on the 1 st & 3 rd Thursday of each month, 1:00-2:00pm The project operates at various sites across the city of Toronto. The PAID project also con-

nects individuals and families to other services, such as:

- Primary health care facilities

- Sources for housing

- Sources for food

- Legal Aid

We also provide guidance and awareness regard- ing other programs that are available, including community-based support services. For more information, please call: Neighbour- hood Link Support Services at 416-691-7407. Also at the Toronto South D.C. Put in a request to see them.

prISon rAdIo

KINGSTON AREA - CFRC Prison Radio airs every Wednesday evening from 7-8pm on 101.9 FM. CFRC is the Queen's University commu- nity radio station and every last Wednesday of the month, they read messages and do song requests from or to prisoners and their friends and family. CFRC can be heard from Millhaven Institution, Collins Bay Institution, Joycev- ille Institution, Bath Institution, Frontenac Institution, Pittsburgh Institution, and Quinte Detention Centre. MONTREAL AREA – CKUT Prison Radio airs on 90.3 FM on the second Thursday of every month between 5-6 pm as part of the Off the Hour show and on the fourth Friday of every month between 11am and 12pm. It can be heard from Bordeaux, Rivière-des-Prairies, Centre de formation fédéral, Leclerc, Montée St-Francois, Centre de détention pour les immi- grants, Archambault, Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines, and Cowansville institutions. VANCOUVER AREA – Stark Raven Col- lective runs the CFRO Prison Radio show on 100.5 FM as part of Vancouver Co-operative Radio. It broadcasts on the first Monday of each month from 7-8 pm Pacific Time HALIFAX AREA - Dalhousie University's CKDU at 88.1 FM. Listen or call in for poetry and rap on the Black Power Hour, which airs Wednesdays from 1:30-2:30pm , and is co-host- ed by former Halifax poet laureate El Jones. The show focuses on social and cultural issues relevant to Black communities, but is open all listeners.

A petItIon for people WHo VISIt prISonerS

If you're someone who visits people inside, and you're having problems with false positives on ion scanners, please look into the ion scanner petition at change.org. Contact your local MPs and continue to file your grievances with them. Follow or pass along this link to your visitors:

bitly.com/ionpetition

We need your Input!

PASAN is currently working with an arts collective, our clients in Toronto and community partners to create a large mosaic which will will be publicly displayed at the agency. The image for the mosaic will be decided upon collaboratively and we'd love to get input from you! Please send us a sketch or an outline of what images you would like to be part of our mural, themed around prison, health and liberation. We don't want to miss out on input from our readers who can't physically attend the meetings so let us know what you'd want to see. This image is from a past mosaic that was created by community members and the arts collective we are working with.

see. This image is from a past mosaic that was created by community members and the

3 // from inside

Missing my Baby

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

Missing My BaBy

Had a girl who lived on the east side Big house, nice car wit em green eyes Rollin thru the hood wit my gun now One late night, one late night out yeah Shoulda listened to my girl, Shoulda put it down

Pulled the trigger, now I’m looking at life

now

Sittin in my cell wit my head down All alone, hollering at my baby on the phone now

Locked up on my birthday

I thought you loved me

Like you said you did My Birthday is tomorrow And I aint got no letter yet Better yet You got me thinking so much

My hearts to fall out my chest

Id pour my heart out for you

Girl and I had it out for you And if I were to lose you girl

I couldn’t imagine what I’d do Were seven years in

I couldn’t believe it man dat love was true And when I’m feeling down Its cuz my feelings are reaching out for

you

Im locked up in a cell feelin down Everytime I think of you

I wanna be right by your side My love is hard to hide

But lately its been killing me It’s almost broken literally

I pray for it to leave me

Be the suffering and agony

I think about you when in my bed

I stay up so late it’s hard to sleep My birthday Feb 21st Frenchy 22:13 Naresh Jolly

FigHT THE aDDiCTiOn

You feel the steel and its little prick The needle and its contents will make you sick! The addiction to the needle is one Hell of a fight! Hustle all day, to get HIGH ALL

NIGHT!

It will consume you in the blink of an eye!

Till the only thing that matters is getting

HIGH!

My Family says don’t dwell on the past. Get it together and make this time your

last!

But I can’t make any promises, even though they are right. All i can do is stand up and fight

Fight for my freedom and the life I once

had

The one I was given from my Mom and

Dad

Do or Die Make it or Not

I would be Rather HATED FOR WHO

I AM! Than LOVED FOR WHO I AM NOT! Daniel Robert Smith

UnTiTlED

My heart is damaged, a broken soul So full of hatred and stuck in turmoil Battered and bruised deep in a hole MY emotions rattled, lost complete

control

This women i love has no time for me

No longer waiting she’s been set free

A heart that’s locked, she holds the key

Has she moved on or does she wait for

me

The truth be told soon I’ll be able to see Jasson Van Oorschot

sOMETiMEs

Sometime long ago when I was me and I was in you

I always thought that I would have you

forever

but then you left me and never came back

You left without ever saying goodbye or looking back You didn’t even wave or kiss me to show

affection

It made me wonder

Sometimes

Sometime long ago when I was me and I was with you I always thought that maybe we would be forever but then again I left You and I never went back because you hurt me. I left you

Without a goodbye. I left you with scars, some things you will always remember me by.

My sort of affection was a kiss of anger. It made you wonder

Sometimes

Sometime long ago when I was me and

you were you. I brought you into a world you never know. I got you counting stacks that you never thought youèd see.

Now you act like I’m someone you don’t see, How could this be when we use to be

like Jay and B. It makes me wonder.

Sometimes

Sometime long ago when you were you

and I was me. It’s my turn to make you wonder and act like you’re someone I don’t see.

Diamond

January 25 2016 Elora Bruns

THE PErsOn i UsE TO HaTE

How could it be

That I’m Free

In every way, but physically, Mentally and Emotionally Mentally It’s a grind Emotionally I try I find that with time

I think it enough

Everything will be fine Deep down inside Is the place that I cry The tears help keep at bay, the flames

That so often rise to my brian It drive me insane

That I might die in this maze

Smoking patch after patch Doing lines of cocaine

I cry out of sadness, fear and the pain

magazine. I will keep you posted with my new address change. So keep up the superb work, Respectfully submitted, Marcel Allary

POEM 1

I always thought love would

Come with flashing lights And a trumpets blare But much as a serenade or a breath of springtime air You love has entered My heart And ever so gently Whispers there

Poem 2

I don’t know whether Laws be right Or whether laws

Be wrong

All I know is he who be in jail The wall be strong And that each day

Is like a year

A year whose days are long

Wayne Yates Box 2000 Agassiz BC VOM 1AO Fragile Things Eyes look ‘round behind me Robin’s egg falling gently Pauses and Spins, slowly round Waiting for eyes to blin A reflection in the glass All mankind looks back, I pause Seeing my egg shell skin Waiting for time to crack Shards fall slowly to ground Broken images spinning sharply Seven more years of luck Son long ago, time is fragile Earth from space is a marble Balance with care n a pin

Spinning ‘round before me Filled with fragile things Wake up from this dream and see Futures scattered ‘cross the floor Trying not to step on them You know, they break s easy Kris Olson March 2014

nOTEs in PrisOn

Noon in prison

They dry on my face and tis there

I

think about poetry

That their stained

Everything is poetry

Is this my claim to some fame?

Notepad on bed

Putting words on a page

I

scribble down words

Being trap in a cage Trapped with this rage

Words are everywhere New York is far

That I take out on people Still deprives me escape As of late I need a change in my soul

I’m in Canadian prison Everyone is in prison Nas raps on my stereo

Either change in many ways, or I’ll never

I

won’t stop now

make it home \

Everyone hates me

Kyle King

Never getting out

HaPPy nEw yEar CEll COUnT Jan 16

2016

I’m just trying to be free Everyone is free Now that I’m alone

Good afternoon there Minister of Infor-

mation

I am a client here at Regional Correctional

Centre, I have been held captive here since Oct 30th 2015. I will be released Feb 28 2016. Being here on vacation should of had a less that was to be learned. However I only made more mad contacts in the system. I am here because

the Government says I can’t “grow weed.” I was caught with 5 plants over my legal limit. And again that is another day and a half story. I have read one of your summer issues of Cell Count. I was amazed by the in depth info I read in three. Very very interesting. Please feel to publish any of this in your cell count. As I would like to be a subscriber to the

I am connected

To everything

This poem placed third in the Pacific Regional Literacy Awards. I’d love to see

it published in Cell Count. Hopefully that could be possible. The prison theme is

this but there are a lot of broken futures scarred across the prison yard I don’t know why I wrote never get- ting out in the fourth stanza. My release date is actually March 2018. Still prison

is more than just a place - it is a state of

mind.

Kris Olson

HUrriCanE anDrEa

She came into my life, As a gust of wind though not fierce

Subtle warm and uplifting she did seem

But of course that was at first.

I was but a leaf caught in the torment of her updraft, Spinning out of control until it hurt. When everything went dark and I felt

cold,

Then I realized I was laying in the dirt.

No chance Raised up by the streets the way I was stumbling every step

Has filled my life with nothing more than suffering & regrets When I should have been in school with teachers and making friends

I found myself roaming the roads barely a

boy and becoming a man Now as I look back thinking to myself about the chances I never had

I wonder am I the one to blame or is it mom & dad Jessy Rose

rEFOrM?

Powered by more just laws And bourgeois terror,

The capitalist death drive Steamrolls over the picket line Be we now have Softer blankets And our death camp

Is pretty (The Walls

Are bright and the barbed wire Fence lined with colour.)

I hardly even notice anymore The tire tracks On my flaccid penis As I get fist-fucked By the invisible hand Nick Paccione

Jennifer

I cupped your

Searing moonlight And you drank My blood And we danced Drunk in the Devils garden My hand Now cups

A withered heart

But when immortal Evening dies

I still look

At the moon

And whisper Your name Nick Paccione

HUrT

When I was small You seemed very tall You treated my like dirt

Now I’m feeling very hurt

I was an innocent child

Who was gone completely wild You were the one I was supposed to look up to Then I realized that was not true.

I’m so full of rage

That I don’t care if I end up in a cage. Living with this pain

Is driving me insane

Oh Great spirit with your gentle voice

Please help me make the right choice Help me to understand That you are in command Teach us to respect one another Just like a sister or a brother

I want to learn how to forgive

So that I may continue to live Help me to be strong

Especially when things start to go wrong Having this feeling

Is a part of our healing

By Wally Katigakyok and Friend Tim

Carter

 
concrete blossoms
concrete blossoms

A column for self-identified women, gender- queer and non-binary folks.

 

rIgHtS for bC trAnSgender prISonerS

By Gin Marshall Beneficial changes have been

included in the November, 2015 revision of the British Columbia Corrections Branch, Adult Custo- dy Policy. The Policy outlines that Transgender prisoners should now be referred to by their preferred name and gender pronoun verbally and placed in a correctional centre ac- cording to their self-identified gender or housing preference, recognizing that not all transgender prisoners want to be housed according to their self-identified gender. The Policy also

outlines that Transgender prison- ers are allowed to keep personal gender-expression items and are also

allowed to purchase canteen items according to their self-identified gen- der. The Policy states that whenever possible, transgender prisoners will not be segregated, and if they are segregated, it will be for as short a time period as possible. According

to the Policy, Transgender prisoners

who are housed according to their birth-assigned gender are not required to share a cell with another prisoner. For Transgender prisoners who want more information or need support around these issues, the West Coast Prisoner Justice Society’s 2015 pamphlet entitled Transgender* Rights in Federal Prisons contains

the following process for contacting them: Before you contact Prisoners' Legal Services, you must call the

Legal Services Society Call Centre at

1-888-839-8889 for a referral. After obtaining a referral, you may call the Prisoners’ Legal Services for help at 1-866-577-5245. Their telephone lines are open Monday to Friday between 9-11 a.m. and 1-3 p.m.

 

WoMen StAy ConneCted WItH CHIldren

By Shelby Kennedy Women account for 11% of all provincial custodial sentences and most are in prison for the first time. Because women and girls account for 70% of people who live in absolute poverty, there is an increasing number of women who are incarcerated for necessary crimes related to economic

survival. In other words, we are im- prisoning women for doing their best to provide for themselves and their families. Every day, more young wom- en (particularly between ages 20 and 34) are being arrested and incarcerated for shorter, provincial sentences in Canada. Many of these women are

mothers and will be forced to separate from their children. The structure of the prison system in Nova Scotia creates particularly challenging barriers for women inside. Burnside is a maximum security pro-

vincial facility primarily for men. It is also the only provincial institution that Cont'd on page 5

4 // news on the block

 

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

Absurdity of Solitary Confinement Practices Mounts

one to society once they’re incarcerated, the easier it will be to reintegrate them” the introduction of increasing fees for phone calls is a worrying trend 3 .

By Victor Bruzzone

 

charge should be stayed. And those who allowed this to happen must be held to account. Nothing less can compensate for this sickening cruel- ty”, argued the Globe 2 . Sadly, the Capay situation is not entirely unique. As Rachel Browne reported for Vice News, there are currently (as of November 2016) 21 Ontario inmates who have been in solitary confinement for more than

a

year. This seems to be a sharp

 
2016) 21 Ontario inmates who have been in solitary confinement for more than a year. This

The use of solitary confinement in Canadian prisons has recently received increased media attention. Much of this relates to the recent case of 23-year old Adam Capay, a prisoner in a Thunder Bay, Ontario jail. The shocking fact that Capay has spent more than 1,560 days in isolation (that’s more than four years) has recently come to the public’s attention. Capay is currently awaiting trial for allegedly killing a fellow prisoner This situation is unacceptable for a number of reasons. For one thing, The United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners states that eliminating hu- man contact for more than 22 hours

1

.

 

ContrAbAnd deteCtIng toIlet pooH-pooHed

 

Corrections Canada had tendered

a

contract to spend over $266,000 on

special toilets that mechanically sep- arate feces and any potential contra- band. Corrections Canada investigator Howard Sapers was immediately critical of the plan. If Corrections Canada “argues that it doesn't have the resources to, for example, spend more on programming or putting more resources into integration services”, things that help inmates return to the community, “then I would be

really interested in seeing the business case that results in spending more money on this technology”, argued Sapers. Moreover, according to prison statistics there has been no discernible increase in Contraband smuggling that might justify such technology . Thankfully, the plan has been shelved

for now

4

.

increase from 2015, which is kind of ridiculous considering Correctional

Services administration was supposed to be decreasing its use of segrega-

tion 3 .

Despite the warnings about the cruel use of solitary confinement, stopping its use won't be an easy task. The Globe and Mail has reported that

a

day, for more than 15 consecutive

the CSC workers union supports the use of solitary, arguing that reducing the practice will put prisoners and employees at greater risk of harm 4 .

 

days in a windowless room is torture. The psychological harm that solitary

confinement causes is well document- ed.

If

there were any evidence to back

 

ASSISted deAtH In prISonS?

 

this up perhaps such concerns would be worth considering. However, from

   

As Maclean’s journalist Martin Patriquin reported, Correctional Services Canada practices a kind of ‘double talk’ on the topic of solitary confinement claiming Canadian prisons do not practice solitary con- finement, but rather “administrative segregation”. This distinction seems suspect. According to Correctional Services Canada spokesperson Avely Serin, “It is the separation, when specific legal requirements are met, of an inmate from other inmates.” If Capay has indeed been segregated in a windowless room for more than

   
Capay. The Globe and Mail

Capay. The Globe and Mail

Lauren Krugel of The Canadian Press reported on the implications of new assisted death laws for prison- ers. Corrections Canada policy is to

the 2013-14 fiscal year to the present,

a

period in which prisons were man-

dated to reduce their use of segrega- tion, “Figures measuring assaults on inmates and staff, and inmate fights have remained relatively stable”.

 

provide prisoners with the same level of health care as would be received

in

the general population. Now that

assisted death is legally available

A

CBC investigative report by

for patients with terminal illnesses

Jacques Marcoux shows that the use of segregation might also be rather arbitrary depending on the prison and region of Canada. In the report, Marcoux uncovered data that suggests how long a prisoner is likely to spend in solitary depends on the particular prison (See Charts). This suggests that the policies governing the use of segregation are not clear, and that prisons are basically setting their own standards depending on prison culture 5 . "The legislation basically says that [administrative] segregation can be

 

in

Canada this has raised questions

about how this will apply to prisoners. Implementation would need to ensure that prisoners have the means to give their informed consent. Criminal law

expert Lisa Silver wants to see specific amendments to relevant laws to ensure that prisoners have “the same access

22

indication that he was/is), there is no functional difference between solitary confinement and “administrative isolation”. Another outrageous fact with regard to the Capay case is that according to Ontario Corrections policy, every five days of segregation

hours per day (and there is every

to

medical and legal advice in making

their end-of-life decisions” as those

in

the general population. Formal

recommendations are expected in the coming year 5 .

ACCountAbIlIty for prISonerS At rISk WItH neWS of SAperS’ reSIg- nAtIon

is supposed to lead to an internal review. Moreover, prisoners spending

used for any reason related to the se- curity of the penitentiary or the safe-

 

Are your complaints being heard?

2015 article by Craig W. J. Minogue

30

days in segregation should auto-

ty of any person. Those are both very broad categories and they allow a lot of discretion on the part of prison officials," explained Lisa Kerr, As- sistant Professor of Law at Queen’s University. This is a troubling finding that should hopefully lead to action on clarifying policy surrounding the use of segregation.

As of Novemeber 8th 2016, the Toronto Star reported that federal corrections services investigator Howard Sapers will head a com- prehensive review of the Ontario Corrections system, with particular emphasis on solitary confinement.

 

A

matically trigger notifications to se-

nior officials at Ontario Corrections Services. Therefore, there is good

reason to believe that prison officials have been reminded monthly about Capay's situation, and have spent four years choosing not to take action. In light of this appalling situation,

is reassuring to see the Globe and

Mail run an editorial condemning the Capay situation, “The inhuman treat- ment of Adam Capay defies catego- rization. He must be released from solitary and given medical care – by the end of this week. His murder

it

published in the Journal of Prisoners on Prisons highlights the significant problem of prison staff and manage- ment not understanding the law or proper administrative decision making

The review will focus on “finding ways to reduce the use, duration and conditions of solitary confinement,

proposing other options — especially for those with mental health issues — and boosting training for staff, among

other concerns

6

.”

Browne, R. (2016, November 4). 21 Ontario

3

Inmates Have Been Held in Solitary Confine- ment for More Than a Year. VICE Canada.

4

reduce segregation put prison safety at risk, union warns. The Globe and Mail.

5

White, P. (2016, October 13). Measures to

Macoux, J. (2016, October 20). Where you’re

processes. Minogue, who has been imprisoned in Australia since 1986 has previously brought his com-

plaints to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights,

claiming that the Australian Ombuds-

Patriquin, M. (2016, November 2). Why

1

Adam Capay has spent 1,560 days in solitary. Macleans

locked up determines how much time you spend in solitary confinement. CBC News

man's Office (the sole accountability mechanism for prisoners in Australia)

6

Rushowy, K. (2016, November 8). Howard

was not effective in ensuring prisoners rights or responding to their com- plaints. Minogue reveals that often in

2

The Globe and Mail. (2016, October 24).

Sapers to head segregation review | Toronto Star. The Toronto Star.

Ontario’s sickening mistreatment of Adam

What's New in Prison News?

 

for changes to the way prisons manage family visitation and communication procedures. The second most frequent internal complaint by inmates reveals flaws “with technology that is meant to ease their communication with loved ones”, reported Zoe Todd of CBC News. Many such complaints relate to inconsistent telephone function and the replacement of in-person meeting

spaces for virtual video calls. As Sapers argues, “family contact is a very, very important part of the safe and timely return to communities”. Sapers will be outlining his concerns in his annual

report

2

.

Bill Graveland of the Canadian Press recently reported on the steadily increasing fees that Canadian prisoners have to pay to make phone calls. Mani- toba prisons recently introduced a $3 fee for calls of up to 15 minutes. In addi- tion, Alberta prisoners pay $1.25 plus 25 cents per minute for long distance calls. These fees coincide with the introduc- tion of Texas-based Synergy Inmate Phone Solutions as private contractor tasked with managing the phone systems at prisons in Manitoba, Alberta, and Sas-

katchewan. Prisoners' Justice advocates

Australia, prisoners complaints are "re- defined" by the Ombudsman's office, reframing the initial issue out of con- text, to a matter of procedure. Often complaints are also handled with bias, initially judged to have occurred with "good reason" by corrections officials. Canada's equivalent to Australia’s Ombudsman is the Correctional Investigator for Canada, which is currently headed by Howard Sapers. Sapers has led numerous studies on Canada's federal prisons, and has high- lighted similar troubles with the CSC's accountability. A disturbing example surrounds the CSC's failure to proper-

ly

report on deaths which occurred in

Compiled by Victor Bruzzone and Kira Hogarth-Davis

 

rights issue. Sapers “points to poverty,

the history of colonialism and lingering effects of the residential school system as reasons why so many aboriginal people suffer from alcoholism and other problems that land them in the justice system.” Kim Pate, executive director of the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry Societies expressed little surprise at the numbers and expects to see these numbers rise to as much as 40-50 percent should no action be taken 1 .

AborIgInAl populAtIon In CAnAdIAn prISonS groWS

Efforts to curb the high percentage of aboriginals in Canadian prisons are failing according to Corrections Canada investigator Howard Sapers. As CBC News reported, people with aboriginal ancestry now make up 25.4 percent of the federal prison population (including Adam Capay). The numbers for female prisoners is even higher at over 36 percent. Sapers expressed alarm over the dramatic year over year increases and sees it at as a potential human

CAllS for prISon VISItAtIon reforM

 

unreASonAble InCreASed pHone CoStS

worry that prisoners will lose connection with family and friends because of the burden of paying fees. Since,“research shows us the closer you can keep some-

prison. In a study released in August 2016, Sapers revealed that reports re-

Correction Services Canada inves- tigator Howard Sapers’ recently called

 

cont'd on page 5

5 // news on the block

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

 

Keeping in Touch with Books

Trump so blatantly abhors. The power of American culture and politics rests in its ability to seep into the ethos of other nations. This begs the question:

How will Trump’s presidency affect the prison system here in Canada? While Canada holds the internation- al reputation of being a multicultural, peacekeeping country, it is no secret that our leaders have (covertly) shared Trump’s carceral vision. Quiet as its kept, Canada is undergoing the largest prison expansion in North America, with an estimated $2 billion going to- wards new beds and facility expansion over the course of five years. Trudeau’s opinion on Trump’s more egregious platform promises could be described as moderate at best, however the cur- rent prison project undertaken during his time as Prime Minister speaks vol- umes. The nature of a nation’s justice system speaks to the core values its leaders possess. The prison expansion occurring in Canada is in alignment with the mores found at the heart of Trump’s campaign. Canada’s relationship with the U.S. during Trump’s presidency is likely to only exacerbate the existing issues in our prison and justice system. Cur- rently, the legal maximum wage an inmate can earn is $6.90, one in every five inmates commit suicide and the Black inmate population has increased by 69% (between 2005 and 2015). Trump’s presidency spells critical times for these two North American nations and whether or not Canada's leadership is prepared to mitigate the damage remains to be seen.

Concrete blossoms cont'd from page 3

inside have the opportunity to choose

a

book and have the members of BBB

houses women. Women serving sen- tences in other provinces would have access to minimum or medium security depending on their charge, but that is not the case in Nova Scotia. Most of the programming available at Burn- side is designed for men and fails to recognize the needs of women. Simply put, women on the inside are grossly

under-served. On top of this, some

record them reading it aloud. BBB will then mail a copy of the record- ing, along with the storybook, to the

woman’s family/children. Kids are able to follow the story along with their moms, grandmas, or aunties, even at a distance. I had the chance to speak with an ex-prisoner from Burnside who

is

a former BBB program user. She

women are incarcerated hours away from their homes and families. This can make visits difficult as traveling takes time and money that some people just do not have. Books Beyond Bars (BBB) is a small collective of roughly 10 people that do work around prisoner justice issues, particularly issues faced by women imprisoned in Nova Scotia. BBB, an abolitionist organization, was formed

in 2005 after a talk on the living condi- tions of women in prison delivered by ex-prisoner Ann Hansen. Their work involves public education and services for women inside. At the foundation of these services

described these services as “invaluable” to women on the inside. While inside, she was frustrated over the lack of educational programming relevant to post-GED studies. Due to this gap in programming, books were essential to her ability to expand her knowledge and skills. BBB was the only pro- gramming she recalls having access to during her time at Burnside. But as with a lot of other programming, if the prison was on lockdown or she was in the hole there was absolutely no access to basic human needs, nevermind pro- grams. She also shared her experiences of being able to maintain connections

is

the library program. Every two

with BBB since being out and the ways

weeks, BBB goes into Burnside with a lending library for the women. Aside

from the existing library, prisoners have

in which that has positively affected her life. Members of Books Beyond Bars were able to help support her proposal

a

choice in what they read by submit-

ting requests for specific books/au- thors/subjects. Anything from the legal thrills of author John Grisham to the biography of Cher. After every visit in- side, BBB will post the list of requests to their various platforms and work hard to locate the requested books. In some cases, if funding is available the collective will purchase the books if they are unable to get it on donation. Another way BBB assists women with maintaining their connections to the world outside is through the “Read Aloud” program. During their visits, members of BBB bring in a selection of children’s books. Women on the

for a peer-support program by helping with writing the proposal and by offer- ing space to hold the program. Due to capacity, BBB only offers services for provincially-sentenced women imprisoned in Nova Scotia. But feel free to take whatever you can from this. If you already have access to

library program such as this, consider

speaking to folks about organizing something like the “read aloud” pro- gram. If you do not have a library pro- gram, the folks at Books Beyond Bars recognize the value of these programs and are willing to chat with people on the outside about how to establish these types of programs elsewhere.

a

they would be willing to hire a current or former prisoner, to which over 90% responded positively.

Despite these optimistic results, the future of the prison farm program is still undecided. The results of the consultation will be used to make a decision in the future, and currently only Joyceville and Collins Bay are being considered. Like many decisions made by the government, the fate of the prison farms may come down to economics. Back in 2010 the farm program generated $7.5 million, but ran at an operating cost of $11.6 million: a loss of $4.1 million annually.

Source: Release of Results of CSC Penitentiary Farms Public Consultation 2016-11-09 http://www.csc-scc.gc.ca/consult/index-en.shtml

during this time supporters of migrant justice took to the streets in Regina, Ottawa, Toronto and Peterborough. In Goodale’s hometown, Indigenous land defenders at the Colonialism No More camp showed up again and again at Goodale’s offices and public appear- ances until he met with them. Solidarity messages and letters of support flooded in. Hundreds of us called, emailed and tweeted at Minister Goodale. Goodale spoke, not because of the goodness of his Liberal heart, but because we – all of us, but most impor- tantly immigration detainees – pres- sured him to do so. And it wasn’t easy. Goodale tried to ignore us, and tried to dismiss our pressure with a public blog full of lies and misrepresentations. Now, let us examine the announce- ment. $138 million will be used to renovate or rebuild two (of the three) immigration prisons in Canada, in Laval, Quebec and Vancouver, British Columbia. $10 million of these funds will be allocated to mental health sup- ports. Consultations will take place at some point, likely by invitation, to make further changes. We do not expect radical transfor- mation from any government body, but we asked ourselves: Would these changes have kept Melkioro, Francisco, Abdurrahman or anyone else alive? Would these changes mean that individ- uals would not be jailed in maximum security prisons? Would these changes mean that individuals and families and children would not be jailed indefinitely without charges or trial? The answer to all of the above is a resounding No. In fact, the Liberals’ only response to the hunger strike denouncing gross human

rights violation in detention is to pour money into detention centres. This level of cynicism is disgusting. To answer yes to those questions, the Federal Liberals would have to pass laws, or propose regulations, or at least make policy changes that end indefinite detention, that end the detention of children, that end the maximum secu- rity imprisonment of detainees. The entire process by which detainees are detained would need to be revised. That hasn’t happened – and so our work is far from done. Just last week, we were in court with Alvin Brown, who was imprisoned without charges or trial for over five years. We used a creative, and never-tried-before legal strategy, to get the Ontario provincial courts to rule on a federal immigration matter. While we were expect the ruling to come in a few weeks, CBSA was up to its dirty tricks. Alvin Brown was deported in the middle of the litigation, suspiciously timed to ensure that case law favourable to immigration detainees wouldn’t be created. His lawyers are still seeking damages. Over the next few months, we will be in the streets, the courts, in MP offices, and on social media raising hell, and seeking your support to end immigration detention. But know this, the fight is far from done. Re-printed with permission from the End Immigration Detention Network (End Immigration Detention Peter- borough, End Detentions Vancouver, Fuerza Puwersa and No One Is Illegal

Toronto.) Please note: The original article added fur- ther notes to this article, however, due to space constraints, we could not re-print these.

Hunger strike forces announcement on

detentions

On August 15, the Federal Public Safety

Minister Ralph Goodale pitched a new national immigration detention strategy.

Before we share our analysis of this announcement, let us first discuss the context within which the announce- ment was made. Melkioro Gahungu, Francisco Astorga, and an as-yet unidentified man, died in immigration detention in the last six months. Three deaths under Goodale’s watch, and not a single word of apology, accountability or responsi- bility from the Federal Liberals. The silence was broken only when dozens of people put their health and lives at stake. On July 11th, around 50 immigration detainees began a hunger strike in two Ontario prisons. The strike grew to over 60 detainees by Day 2. The hunger strike lasted 19 days and

Will Trump Win Affect Canadian Prison System?

19 days and Will Trump Win Affect Canadian Prison System? By Charlene Grant With every presidential

By Charlene Grant

With every presidential campaign, the American political sphere ushers the voting public (and international specta- tors) into a period of partisan passion. Fear and excitement seems to swell the ground each candidate treads, and one’s alliance with either party warrants appraisal of an ominous moral com- pass. Nevertheless, it is a phase where the stakes are high and fortune favours the elected candidate. Donald Trump’s recent ascension to U.S. presidency has brought profound realities of racial friction and Neo-Liberal ambition into focus. Both issues are primary factors in

the expansion of the Prison Industrial Complex and the privatization of feder- al prisons across North America. The U.S. imprisons more of its population than any other nation on earth. Trump’s victory as Republican electoral candidate will only strength- en this tradition through his virulent support of prison privatization and intentions to crack down on America’s “out of control” crime rates. With the scales of incarceration already tipped to place minorities at a disadvantage, one can only imagine what will happen during to the marginalized populations

Hope for the Canadian Prison Farm Program

By Kira Hogarth-Davis

On November 9th 2016 the Federal government released a report reviewing the closure of the CSC penitentiary farms. Before the closure of the 6 farms in in Alberta, Saskatch- ewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick, up to 700 prisoners were employed in the program annually. The decision to close the farms was highly controversial, with supporters arguing that the farms taught essential skills and built connections with the surround- ing community. Prisoners employed on the farm worked on farm mainte- nance, feeding cattle, operating milking machinery, grain cultivation, as well as plowing, harvesting, tilling and planting crops. The new Liberal government is now studying the possibility of reopen-

ing the farms, with initial interest focus- ing on the Kingston area of Ontario. Over the summer the government conducted consultations and surveys which asked for public opinion on re-establishing the farms. The results of the consultations revealed that there is great interest in the farms, receiving over 6000 responses from Canadians nationwide. Of these respondents, 88% agreed that the prison farms were mutually beneficial to both the CSC and the community. The community also believed that employment working on the farms would be beneficial for prisoners, with a staggering 98.3% indicating that the farms played an im- portant part of prisoner rehabilitation. The same survey also asked agricultural business owners and farm operators if

Correctional Investigator Exits

Accountability cont'd from page 4

leased to families of deceased prison- ers contained evidence of non-compli- ance with policy, including censorship and completely changing the context of information provided. The findings of Sapers echo the disturbing study by Minogue, clearly in- dicating that accountability mechanisms are lacking for prisoners on a global scale. The findings of the August 2016 report are troubling in light of recent news of Sapers’ resignation. Sapers will be leaving his federal position in January 2017 and will begin to work solely for the province of Ontario. His replace- ment has yet to be announced, but it is crucial that the Liberal government must bring in someone who is willing to work as tirelessly to improve CSC conditions and accountability.

1. CBC News. (2016, January 14). Prison watchdog

shocked at number of aboriginal inmates. CBC News.

2. Todd, Z. (2016, September 25). Canada’s federal

prison visitation system hard on families of inmates, critics say. CBC News

3. Graveland, B. (2016, October 27). Increased

phone costs and additional punishment for prison inmates. CityNews

4. Burke, D. (2016, October 5). Prison watchdog

pooh-poohs $266K toilet-buying plan to collect

inmates’ waste. CBC News.

5. Krugel, L. (2016, June 16). Medically assisted

death: Can Canadian prison inmates now ask to die? | Global News. Craig W. J. Minogue (2015). Effective Accountabil-

ity Mechanisms Overseeing Corrections in Australia and Beyond: Are Ombudspersons a Vital Element in the Rule of Law or a Forlorn Hope?. Journal of Prisoners on Prisons, 24(1). http://www.jpp.org/back_issues.htm Prison Watchdog Howard Sapers Fears Death Reports Are Being Censored By Michael Tutton, The Canadian Press

08/02/2016

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2016/08/02/study-

suggests-federal-prisons-blacking-out-errors-in-

death-reports-ombudsman_n_11303468.html

In the Dark: An Investigation of Death in Custo-

dy Information Sharing and Disclosure Practices in Federal Corrections Final Report August 2, 2016 http://www.oci-bec.gc.ca/cnt/rpt/pdf/oth-aut/

oth-aut20160802-eng.pdfl

6 // remembering pete collins

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

6 // remembering pete collins CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER CORRECTIONAL CARTOONS 10) One of those Decades; 2003

CORRECTIONAL CARTOONS 10) One of those Decades; 2003 Just a play on the "one of those days" complaints that we all throw around. It popped into my head when a guard was walking through our range com- plaining to anyone who would listen about what a tough day he was having.

Pete Fought for Change

Pete Collins cont'd from page 1 Justice Day for 31 years. In an environment that is designed to crush people’s spirits and dehuman- ize them, Pete maintained his sense of self, his integrity, his humour, his creativity, his kind and loving nature, and his drive to make change in the world. Despite his daily experiences of cruelty, arbitrary exercises of power, censorship, retaliation, dishonesty and outright torture at the hands of CSC, he was always looking beyond his own struggle, and using his experience to raise awareness and fight for systemic change. He ceaselessly stood up for what he believed in, even when it came at great personal cost. There was never any other option for him. In a system that demands compliance, he resisted until the very end. He was the strongest person I’ve ever met. His death is a huge loss and he is missed every day, but he lives on through his work, and in the hearts and minds of those who love him and were inspired by him.

and minds of those who love him and were inspired by him. CORRECTIONAL CARTOONS 12) Wanted

CORRECTIONAL CARTOONS 12) Wanted Cartoonist; 2003 (Previously 001) The vehemence that the CSC has gone after me & my artis- tic/political expression has underlined the old adage that the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has gone to try and silence my dissenting views.

the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has
the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has
the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has
the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has
the pen is mightier than the sword. I am amazed at the lengths the CSC has

7 // health and harm reduction

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

5 STEPS TO Prevent Overdose SAVE A LIFE In Toronto 1 SHAKE & SHOUT at
5 STEPS TO
Prevent Overdose
SAVE A LIFE
In Toronto
1
SHAKE & SHOUT
at shoulders
their name
2
911
CALL 911
if unresponsive
3
INJECT NALOXONE
1 ampoule (1mL) into
arm or leg muscle
4
CHEST COMPRESSIONS
or full CPR and/or rescue
breathing as trained
5
IS IT WORKING?
?2nd
If no improvement in 3-5 minutes
dose
repeat steps 3&4
STAY!
Stick around until EMS arrives
in case they still need help
PH1601SS625
A pharnacist or The Works can train you to use Naloxone
  SIGNS OF SIGNS of
 

SIGNS OF

SIGNS of

Prevent Overdose

In Toronto

OPIOID OVERDOSE & OPIOID OVERDOSE RECOVERY POSITION + RECOVERY POSITIO

OPIOID OVERDOSE &

OPIOID OVERDOSE

RECOVERY POSITION

+

RECOVERY POSITIO

OVERDOSE

Avoid mixing drugs or using with alcohol. Try to use one at a time and use drugs before alcohol.

PREVENTION

Know your tolerance, if you haven’t used for a while, (3 days or more) your body can’t handle the same amount as before. Start as if you have never used before.

Do a tester and ask around with a new supply or dealer. Taste it, smoke it, use a little and see what others are saying.

Use with a friend but avoid injecting at the same time in case one of you needs help.

Have a plan, talk about overdose before it happens and with people you trust.

SIGNS OF

• Can’t wake the person up

• Breathing is very slow, erratic or has stopped

OPIOID

• Deep snoring or gurgling sounds

OVERDOSE

• Fingernails or lips are blue or purple

• Body is very limp

• Pupils are very small

RECOVERY POSITION

Head should be tilted back slightly to open airway Place their hand under their head
Head should be tilted back
slightly to open airway
Place their
hand
under their head
for support
Bend knee forward to prevent
body from rolling onto stomach

Put person in recovery position if:

• Unconscious and breathing

• You have to leave the person unattended

The Works 277 Victoria St. Toronto, Ontario 416-392-0520

• You have to leave the person unattended T h e W o r k s
• You have to leave the person unattended T h e W o r k s

From Mobb Deep Rapper, A Cookbook For Healthy Eating — In Prison

By Tove Danovich NPR.org It’s hard enough to eat healthy even when you have access to grocery stores, sharp knives and refrigerators. But for those in prison, it can be almost impossible. Behind bars, it often takes ingenuity, a hodgepodge of commissary items and food shipped from loved ones to even approximate a proper diet. This is what Albert “Prodigy” Johnson, of the influ- ential hip-hop duo Mobb Deep — you might remember their '90s hit single Shook Ones, Part II — discovered after he was sentenced for illegally possessing a firearm in 2007 in the United States. Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook, is written by Prodigy and journalist Kathy Iandoli. In the book, Prodigy describes how his lifelong battle with sickle cell anemia made him hyper-conscious of what he ate while incarcerated. “I couldn’t afford to get sick in prison,” he writes. “My sickle cell is no joke, so I couldn’t eat poorly or not ex- ercise. And everything in jail is designed to do the exact opposite.” This is just a hint of what sets Commissary Kitch- en apart from other books in the genre — it’s about Prodigy’s experience of prison as much, if not more than, about the food itself. Unlike most cookbooks, there will also be an audio version read by Prodigy — recipes included. While the prison menus did change, he writes that there was only one green vegetable that made it onto his cafeteria

tray — green beans — and it was served only once a week. Even though he tried to eat healthy, readers of the book will notice the recipes are a far cry from anything Gwyneth Paltrow would whip up in her kitchen. “It’s not all healthy stuff,” Prodigy told NPR in an interview. “There’s a lot of butter and seasonings — it’s as healthy as I could get in the prison system.” Just because inmates have access to the prison cafeteria doesn’t mean that they have enough to eat. Prison meals are often so cheap, meager and bad that they’ve incited riots, caused starving inmates to supplement their diets with “toothpaste and toilet paper,” and sparked investigations from human rights organizations, according to the Marshall Project, a criminal justice advocacy nonprofit. Those who try to cook during allotted times to avoid prison fodder might have to use a knife so dull that “it only works as a stirrer,” Prodigy writes. Some inmates try to save can lids — “the sharpest object you can get” — because they can be held sideways to chop food. Only correctional officers can access refrigerators. But despite this, Prodigy managed to make curry gravy, macaroni and tuna salads, baked seafood with vegetables and sweet potato pie – all recipes that are available in the book. In addition to wanting to eat better food, there’s another reason cooking is such a popular pastime in prison. “It’s just relaxing and you almost forget

where you’re at for an hour or two,” Prodigy says. “It helps people get along, too. Sometimes if you’ve got a group of people in there that are cool with each other, we’d order a chicken [from the commissary] together or make a dinner.” The most important part of prison cooking, Prodigy writes, is the season- ings. Luckily, the commissary offered a lot of them: hot sauce, soy sauce, sugar, mayonnaise, ketchup, barbecue sauce and honey. He could also get spices like Goya Sazón and Adobo, as well as garlic, onion and curry powders. Ramen seasoning packets were popular behind bars, he says, but because each packet contains about 1,000 mg of sodium, he stayed away. Prodigy credits the success of his prison recipes to an inmate from the Virgin Islands who had been a chef on the outside. Prodigy and others gave this inmate food to cook, and soon the chef started explaining how to do things like debone canned fish or create a sauce. “He was showing me different tech- niques and eventually I started making up my own recipes and cooking them,” Prodigy writes. “I found that prepara- tion is everything when you cook.” Unlike most cookbooks, this food is not about beautiful recipes or seasonal ingredients. Prodigy writes that “in a world where prisoners are treated like animals,” preparing food made them feel human. This article was edited due to space constraints

HIV

HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) attacks the immune system (needed to fight off infection and sickness) and makes it weak. There is no vaccine or cure for HIV and the only way to tell if you have it is to get tested through a simple blood test.

HIV is passed through blood, genital fluids (like semen (cum and pre-cum), vaginal secretions (pussy juice) and anal fluids (ass juice)) and breast milk. To get HIV, the virus in one of these fluids must come into direct contact with your bloodstream or the moist lining in the vagina, ass, foreskin or pisshole of the cock. This usually happens through sharing injection equipment and through vaginal and anal intercourse without a condom, and, very rarely, cock sucking. HIV cannot be passed through other body fluids (like sweat, tears, spit or piss) because they don’t hold enough of the virus to infect a person.

When you inject a hit, you make a direct, open path to your bloodstream. This means there is a very high risk of HIV infection. Whether you are HIV positive or HIV negative, you can lower your risk by following these steps:

• Avoid sharing, lending or borrowing works!

• Use new equipment every time. Go to your local needle exchange to get new works.

• Don’t handle or hold other people’s works and don’t let them handle or hold yours.

people’s works and don’t let them handle or hold yours. • If you don’t have access

• If you don’t have access to enough new needles, mark yours clearly so there is no confusion. You can mark your needle by burning or breaking off a tiny piece of the plunger or mark it with a pen.

• Use a latex condom every time you fuck (that goes for anal sex too).

• Get tested for HIV. If you know your status, you can take steps to be healthier and safer.

Contact any Community Health Centre or needle exchange near you to get free condoms and water-based lube (ask about how to use them properly!), and to find out where you can get tested for HIV.

If You Can’t Get New Works

The ideal way to protect yourself from HIV and hepatitis C (Hep C) is to use new works every time you inject and to never share. However, there are many people who do not have access to new needles. For example, there are no needle exchange programs in prisons or in remote areas. If you can’t get new needles (from a needle exchange or pharmacy) it’s important to know how to clean and sharpen your own needle in case you ever need to reuse it for yourself.

It’s very important to clean your own used needle properly before you inject with it.

your own used needle properly before you inject with it. Cleaning properly WILL NOT kill Hep

Cleaning properly WILL NOT kill Hep C and MAY NOT kill HIV, but it’s safer than doing nothing at all.

How to clean your equipment

Needles:

Step 1: Draw cool, clean water up into the syringe and shake for 30 seconds. Squirt the water out. Do this again, using new water.

Step 2: Repeat Step 1, but this time use fresh household bleach instead of water. Don’t forget to shake both times for 30 seconds (it takes at least this long for bleach to attack HIV).

Step 3: Repeat Step 1 again, using new clean water from a different container or from the tap.

Cookers: You can also clean your spoon/cooker with bleach by rinsing it with water and letting it soak for 30 seconds in straight bleach, then rinse and repeat the process. Rinse it with water once more before using it.

the process. Rinse it with water once more before using it. 2 x water. 30 seconds

2

x water. 30 seconds

process. Rinse it with water once more before using it. 2 x water. 30 seconds 2

2 x bleach. 30 seconds

process. Rinse it with water once more before using it. 2 x water. 30 seconds 2

2 x water. 30 seconds

Source: Sharp Shooters: Harm Reduction Info For Safer Injection Drug Use. CATIE | Queen West Community Health Cen- tre, 2014

8 // resources & about pasan

CELL COUNT//ISSUE 79//DECEMBER

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150 Bentinck St, Sydney, NS, B1P
1G6 902-567-1766
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700-251 Bank St, Ottawa, K2P
1X3 613-238-5014 (Collect) or Toll
Free (ON & QC only) 1-2800-461-2182
AIDS COMMITTEE of THUN-
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Accept collect calls
574 Memorial Ave, Thunder Bay,
1675 Bedford Row, Halifax, NS, B3J
P7B 3Z21-800-488-5840, 807-345-
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al, H2L 3T81-877-847-3636, 514-495-0990
COALITION des ORGANISMES-
COMMUNAUTAIRES QUEBE-
COIS de LUTTECONTRE le SIDA
(COCQSIDA)
Accept collect calls
1 est, rue Sherbrooke, Montréal, H2X
3V8 514-844-2477
COMITÉ des PERSONNES AT-
TEINTES du VIH du QUEBEC
1516 (Collect)
POSITIVE LIVING NIAGARA
844-A Princess St, Kingston, K7L
1G5 613-545-3698 (Collect)
ONTARIO ABORIGINAL HIV/
AIDS STRATEGY
Accept collect calls
844-A Princess St, Kingston, K7L
1G5 613-549-7540 (Collect)
PEEL HIV/AIDS NETWORK
Accept collect calls
160 Traders Blvd, Unit 1, Mississauga,
47
Janeway Place, St. John’s, NL, A1A
(CPAVIH)
T5G 0B1 1-877-388-5742
KIMAMOW ATOSKANOW FOUN-
DATION
Accept collect calls
RR 1, Site 1, Box 133, Onoway, AB,
T0E 1V01-866-971-7233, 780-913-9036
NINE CIRCLES COMMUNITY
HEALTH CENTRE
705 Broadway, Winnipeg, MB, R3G
0X2 1-888-305-8647
PLWA NETWORK OF SAS-
KATCHEWAN
1R7 1-800-563-1575
1-800-927-2844
Accept collect calls from registered
clients
(Recommend that you get a case
manager to get registered with
AIDS NEW BRUNSWICK
2075 rue Plessis bureau 310, Montreal,
them)
No collect calls
Box 7123, Saskatoon, SK, S7K 4I1 306-
65 Brunswick St, Fredericton, NB, E3B
H2L 2Y4 1-800-927-2844
111 Church St, St Catharines, L2R
L4Z 3K7
1-866-896-8700, 905-361-0523 (Collect)
PETERBOROUGH AIDS RE-
SOURCE NETWORK (PARN)
Accept collect calls
302-159 King St, Peterborough,
K9J 2R81-800-361-2895, 705-932-
373-7766
1G51-800-561-4009, 506-459-7518
3C9 905-984-8684 or toll free 1-800-
ontArIo
AIDS PEI
Take collect calls
773-9843
2-SPIRITED PEOPLE of the 1ST
NATIONS
Accept collect calls
ANISHNAWBE HEALTH AIDS
PROGRAM
No collect calls
PRINCE ALBERT METIS WOM-
EN’S ASSOC.
No collect calls
2-375 University Ave, Charlottetown,
PE, C1A 4N4 902-566-2437
AIDS SAINT JOHN
Don’t accept collect calls
9110 (Collect)
54 10th St E, Prince Albert, SK, S6V
145 Front Street East Suite 105 Toron-
255 Queen St E, Toronto, M5A
to, Ontario M5A 1E3 416-944-9300
115 Hazen St, NB, E2L 3L3 506-652-
AIDS COMMITTEE of TORON-
2437
TO (ACT)
HEALING OUR NATIONS:
1-800 565 4255
3-15 Alderney Dr, Dartmouth, NS,
B2Y 2N21-800-565-4255, 902-492-4255
MAINLINE NEEDLE EX-
CHANGE
543 Yonge Street, 4th floor, Toronto,
ON. M4Y 1Y5 416-340-2437 (Please
note, they do not accept collect
calls)
AFRICANS in PARTNERSHIP
AGAINST AIDS
No collect calls, call PASAN
1S4 416-360-0486
ASIAN COMMUNITY AIDS SER-
VICE
Don’t accept collect calls right now
(they will in 2-3 months)
When prisoners call, they offer them
STREET HEALTH CENTRE
Accept collect calls
Hepatitis C Treatment Program235
Wellington St, Kingston, K7K 0B5 613-
549-1440 (Collect)
THE AIDS NETWORK (TAN)
Don’t accept collect calls
101-140 King St E, Hamilton, L8N
0Y5 306-763-5356
RED RIBBON PLACE
(ALL NATIONS HOPE AIDS
NETWORK)
Calls from within Nova Scotia are free
Don’t accept collect calls
526 Richmond St E, Toronto, M5A
5511
Cornwallis St, Halifax, NS, B3K
1B3 902-423-9991
SHARP ADVICE NEEDLE EX-
1R3 416-924-5256
AIDS COMMITTEE of CAM-
BRIDGE, KITCHENER,WATER-
LOO & AREA
Accept collect calls
Have a toll-free number
2B-625 King St E, Kitchener, N2G
4V4 519-570-3687 (Collect), 1-877–
small bursaries to cover their calling
fees
107-33 Isabella St, Toronto, M4Y
2P7 416-963-4300 (Collect)
BLACK COALITION for AIDS
PREVENTION
Accept collect calls
1B2 905-528-0854 toll free 1-866-563-
Call Leona Quewezance to confirm
next week
2735 5th Ave, Regina, SK, S4T
0L2 1-877-210-7622
STREET CONNECTIONS
0563
No collect calls
THE WORKS
Accept collect calls
705 Broadway Ave, Winnipeg, MB,
R3G 0X2 204-940-2504 WOMEN: 50
277
Victoria St, Toronto, 416-392-0520
Argyle, Winnipeg, MB, R3B 0H6 204-
(Collect)
TORONTO PWA FOUNDATION
943-6379
WeSt CoASt
20 Victoria St, 4th Flr, Toronto, M5C
Accept collect calls from clients
CHANGE
2N8 416-977-9955 (Collect)
200 Gerrard St E, 2nd Flr, Toronto,
AIDS VANCOUVER ISLAND
Accept collect calls
CANADIAN HIV/AIDS LEGAL
NETWORK
Accept collect calls
M5A 2E6 416-506-1400
150
Bentnick St, Sydney, NS, B1P
prAIrIeS
6H1 902-539-5556 (Collect)
SIDA/AIDS MONCTON
1240 Bay St #600, Toronto, M5R 2A7 416-
Accept collect calls as long as they’re
HIV related
770–3687
595-1666 (Collect)
HIV COMMUNITY LINK
Accept collect calls
Accepts collect calls. 713 Johnson
St, 3rd Flr, Victoria, V8W 1M8 250-
384-2366 or 1-800-665-2437
PLBC - PRISON OUTREACH
PROJECT
AIDS COMMITTEE OF GUELPH
FIFE HOUSE
80 Weldon St, Moncton, NB, E1C
Accepts collect calls
110-1603 10th Ave SW, Calgary, AB,
T3C 0J7 403-508-2500
1107 Seymour St, Vancouver, V6B
5S8 Toll Free: PROV - 604-525-
5V8 506-859-9616
QuebeC
CACTUS
Accept collect calls
1300 rue Sanguinet, Montreal, H2X
3E7 514-847-0067
CENTRE for AIDS SERVICES
Accept collect calls, prefer that peo-
ple use their
89 Dawson Rd, Unit 113, Guelph, N1H
3X2 1-800-282-4505; 519-763-2255
(Collect)
AIDS COMMITTEE of NORTH
BAY and AREA
Accept collect calls
201-269 Main St W, North Bay, P1B
490 Sherbourne St, 2nd Flr, Toronto,
AIDS SASKATOON
8646 FED - 1-877-900-2437 (#’s ap-
M4X 1K9
1143 Ave F N, Saskatoon, SK, S7L 1X1306-
416-205-9888
242-5005 1-800-667-6876
proved by institutions and are NOT
Collect Calls)
HIV & AIDS LEGAL CLINIC OF
ON. (HALCO)
Accept collect calls
CENTRAL ALBERTA AIDS NET-
WORK SOCIETY
No collect calls
65 Wellesley St E, Toronto, M4Y
4611 50th Ave, Red Deer, AB, T4N
1G7 1-888-705-8889
3Z9 403-346-8858
POSITIVE WOMEN’S NET-
WORK
614-1033 Davie St, Vancouver, V6E
1M7 Toll Free: 1-866-692-3001 (BC
Only)
STAFF
PASAN is a community-based AIDS Service organiza-
tion that strives to provide community development,
education and support to prisoners and ex-prisoners
in Ontario ON HIV, Hepatitis C (HCV) and other harm
reduction issues. PASAN formed in 1991 as a grassroots
response to HIV in the Canadian prison system. Today,
PASAN is the only community-based organization in
Canada exclusively providing HIV and HCV prevention,
education and support services to prisoners, ex-prisoners
and their families.
Sena Hussain
Outreach & Education
Eveline Allen
Editor-in-chief
Prison Education Programs:
PASAN conducts HIV prevention education programs in
many adult and youth institutions in the southern Ontario
region. This program includes a Peer Educators Group,
whereby ex-prisoners living with HIV are educators for
current prisoners.
PASAN conducts free training for those working with
prison-affected and drug using populations. Training
topics include:
Mooky Cherian
Field Supervisor
Janet Rowe
Cell Count Supervisor
Simona Babiak
Editor & Contributor
Support Services
▪ HIV & Prison
▪ Harm Reduction
Individual Support Services:
▪ The Impact of Segregation
Students from York University's Prisoners' Jus-
tice Course, supervised by Marcus Syrus Ware
& Jin Haritaworn:
▪ Individual support & counselling
▪ Stigma & Discrimination
▪ case management
Systemic Advocacy
Victor Bruzzone
▪ pre-release and post-release planning
Writer
▪ referrals
Since our beginnings in 1991, PASAN has always
▪ advocacy for medical services
maintained a focus on systemic issues of HIV/AIDS and
Charlene Grant
▪ housing supports
prisons.
Some has been involved in many systemic
Writer
▪ phone support through collect calling
advocacy efforts including:
▪ Prison Needle Syringe Project (2014/15)
▪ emergency financial assistance (limited budget for fees
Kira Hogarth-Davis
▪ Advocacy against the use of segregation
related to identification and prison release. Application
Writer
requirements exist)
▪ Presentation to the Canadian Human Rights Commis-
sion (2001)
Shelby Kennedy
Writer
Community Support Services:
▪ Advocacy for male-to-female transsexual/transgendered
prisoners and HIV (1999)
PASAN also provides support AIDS Service Organizations
and community groups across Ontario. This includes:
▪ Presentation to the Presidential Advisory Council on
HIV/AIDS in Washington DC (1998)
Gin Marshall
Writer & Subscriptions Entry
▪ resources & educational materials
▪ training
▪ Presentation to the Parliamentary Subcommittee on
AIDS (1996)
▪ assistance to set up prison outreach and support
projects
Zina Mustafa
Resources & Copy Editor
▪ HIV/AIDS in Youth Custody Settings: A Comprehensive
Strategy (1996)
▪ strategies to develop referral “hubs” for HIV positive
prisoners
▪ Organization of the first National Workshop on HIV/
AIDS in Prison (1995).
▪ networking for the development of a continuum of care
for prisoners transferred between regions
▪ HIV/AIDS in Prison Systems: A Comprehensive Strate-
gy (1992)
Regional Prison In-Reach Coordinator
Eveline has worked at PASAN for 17 years, providing prisoners in
Toronto with harm reduction education, HIV & HCV prevention,
transmission and treatment information. If you are incarcerated
at the Toronto South Detention Centre (TSDC) or the Toronto East
Detention Centre (TEDC) and would like a harm reduction program
on your unit or a private one on one educational please call 1-866-
224-9978 Ext. 238
Simona Babiak
Placement Student
Kerrigan Beaver
Treatment Access Coordinator
Kerrigan works with clients for pre & post release planning. It’s
about reintegration back into their community. This includes con-
necting clients up with healthcare, social and community supports.
Mooky Cherian
Program Manager
Zachary Grant
Federal Hep C Program Coordinator
Seth Clarke
Federal Community Development Coordinator
Trevor Gray
Community Programs Coordinator
Sena Hussain
Communications and Resource Development Coordinator
Sena is the new editor of Cell Count, and looks forward to getting
the newspaper out to you more regularly again!
Lindsay Jennings
Provincial HepC Program Coordinator
Janet Rowe
Executive Director
Cherisa Shivcharran
Provincial Community Development Coordinator
Keisha Williams
Women’s Community Program Coordinator
At work, she enjoys supporting Women and Trans people to make
informed choices (in other words ‘have all the facts’) about their
health and wellness and likes finding creative ways to make it fun!
Contributors: Marcel Allary, Elora Bruns, Tim
Carter, Pete Collins, Wally Katigakyok, Kyle
King, Naresh Jolly, Jason Van Oirschot, Kris
Olson, Nick Paccione, Jessy Rose, & Daniel
Robert Smith