Kamloops Regional Correctional Centre is one of B.C.’s prisons for inmates awaiting trial or serving a sentence of less than two years. (Black Press files)

‘Double-bunking’ still a problem for B.C. provincial jails

Staff shortages have caused unit closures at some prisons

The latest audit of B.C.’s prison system finds more inmates sharing living units than the B.C. Corrections set as its target four years ago, with likely effects on safety and rehabilitation.

Inmate crowding is highest at Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre in Saanich, with 66 per cent of inmates “double bunked” as of last summer, B.C. Auditor General Carol Bellringer reported in an update on the situation released Tuesday. When the audit began in 2015, the target was 32 per cent shared living units.

Second highest capacity for male inmates was Fraser Regional Correctional Centre in Maple Ridge, with 56 per cent of inmates in shared units and four units closed due to lack of staff. Kamloops Regional was at 52 per cent, Surrey Pretrial was at 49 per cent, North Fraser Pretrial in Port Coquitlam was at 48 per cent and Prince George Regional was at 36 per cent.

B.C.’s newest provincial prison, Okanagan Correctional Centre near Oliver, was at 22 per cent double-bunking with two units closed, and Ford Mountain in Chilliwack was the only facility for males showing no shared living units.

READ MORE: ‘Honeymoon is over’ at Okanaga Correctional Centre

READ MORE: Wilkinson Road ‘fortress’ marks 100 years of operation

Women’s facilities at Alouette River had four units closed but no inmates sharing. Prince George Regional had 17 per cent of women inmates sharing living units.

The audit also reviewed programs for controlling assaults, escape attempts, drug and weapon smuggling and property damage in B.C. prisons.

One of the 2015 audit’s recommendation was to assess the impact of housing sentenced and pre-trial inmates together, to meet a regulation that they should be separated “where circumstances allow.” The latest audit found no progress in that area.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Sooke council backs nuclear weapons ban

Mayor believes the municipality’s role includes global issues

Artificial reef created off East Sooke

Divers are discovering plenty of new sea life

Vaping a growing problem in Sooke school district

Island’s chief medical officer raises the alarm

VicPD cuts its Crime Reduction Unit in response to budget constrictions

The CRU worked to reduce crime in the downtown core

Man hit by vehicle while sitting on a curb near Our Place in Victoria

Emergency crews cleared the scene shortly before 11 a.m.

VIDEO: Clip of driver speeding past B.C. school bus alarms MLA

Laurie Throness of Chilliwack-Kent says he will lobby for better safety measures

Olympic skier from B.C. suing Alpine Canada after coach’s sex offences

Bertrand Charest was convicted in 2017 on 37 charges

B.C. senior’s car vandalized for more than 18 months

Retired RCMP officer determined to catch ‘tagger.’

VIDEO: Driver doing laps in busy Vancouver intersections nets charges

Toyota Camry spotted doing laps in intersection, driving towards pedestrians

Former Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo to retire

‘Bobby Lou’ calls it a career after 19 NHL seasons

Man charged in crash that killed B.C. pregnant woman

Frank Tessman charged for 2018 Highway 1 accident where Kelowna elementary school teacher died

Province unveils 10-year plan to boost mental health, addiction recovery services

The plan, called A Pathway to Hope, focuses on early-intervention services that are seeing high demand

Rock slide in B.C. river may hinder salmon passage

DFO says it is aware that the slide occurred in a narrow portion of the Fraser River

Most Read