Yasir Naqvi Attorney General has said “Ontario’s criminal justice system must work to protect the interests of all people — victims, the public and the accused — while keeping our communities safe. We are working on all fronts to ensure that cases get to court faster so that we have a fairer criminal justice system. Our investments in Sudbury and the surrounding region will help make it possible for vulnerable, low-risk people to be safely released in the community with the supervision and support they need.”
Glenn Thibeault MPP for Sudbury said that “Adding these valuable resources will help make a more efficient criminal justice system, allowing Ontario courts to be faster and fairer, while still keeping our communities safe. Working closely with Indigenous communities helps to provide culturally appropriate bail services to address the needs and desires of the community.”
Ontario is rolling out its plan to make the criminal justice system faster and fairer by implementing programs to help reduce time-to-trial and improve the bail system in northeastern Ontario.
The plan will enhance public safety by making it possible to resolve criminal cases faster and by making more supports and supervision available to vulnerable, low-risk individuals who come in contact with the law.
In northeastern Ontario, the province is:
Hiring two new assistant Crown attorneys in Sudbury to help reduce time-to-trial. These new resources may be assigned to assist other court locations as needed to address delays.
Working with Indigenous communities, Indigenous friendship centres, Grand Council Treaty #3, and Nishnawbe-Aski Legal Services Corporation to develop Indigenous Bail Verification and Supervision Programs in Cochrane, Timmins and Manitoulin Island and to develop bail liaison positions in First Nation communities. This work will allow people to receive culturally relevant services in their own communities, delivered by Indigenous service providers.
Working with the Elizabeth Fry Society to establish a brand new Bail Verification and Supervision Program in North Bay to increase supervision and support available to low-risk individuals before their trial.
Expanding the existing Bail Verification and Supervision Program delivered by John Howard Society in Sault Ste. Marie to Elliot Lake, and enhancing the existing services by increasing eligibility and providing support for mental health services.
Enhancing the existing Bail Verification and Supervision Program delivered by the Elizabeth Fry Society in Sudbury by increasing eligibility for services, support for mental health services and weekend and statutory holidays court.
In addition, of the 13 new judges announced in December 2016, Chief Justice Lise Maisonneuve of the Ontario Court of Justice has indicated that she will assign one judge to Gore Bay.
Improving Ontario’s criminal justice system is part of our plan to keep communities safe and help people in their everyday lives.