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Penal Reform in Canada (From EuroCriminology, Volume 10, P 57-76, 1996, Brunon Holyst, ed. - See NCJ-171167)

NCJ Number
T Grygier
Date Published
20 pages
This article reviews the history of Canada's criminal justice system and efforts at penal reform.
The article reviews Canada's history from when the country was a French colony and its law was French common law, which made no distinction between its civil and criminal variety. After the conquest of Quebec by the English, the Royal Proclamation of 1763 replaced French law with English common law, both civil and criminal. In 1872, with the introduction of the Criminal Code of Canada, Canada became the first jurisdiction of the British Empire to codify its criminal law. The first major reformation was a move toward replacing punishment with social and psychological intervention. The article describes subsequent reversion to the concept of punishment as a natural and inevitable consequence of crime and conviction. While a return to the welfare model of criminal justice is neither possible nor advisable, possible alternative policies may include arbitration, restitution and reconciliation, conditional discharge, deferred sentence and probation, and community service, with medical treatment only if it is medically indicated, and incarceration only as a measure of last resort. Notes