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Corrections and Conditional Release Act (S.C. 1992, c. 20)

Act current to 2024-06-19 and last amended on 2022-06-23. Previous Versions

Corrections and Conditional Release Act

S.C. 1992, c. 20

Assented to 1992-06-18

An Act respecting corrections and the conditional release and detention of offenders and to establish the office of Correctional Investigator

Her Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Corrections and Conditional Release Act.

PART IInstitutional and Community Corrections


Marginal note:Definitions

  •  (1) In this Part,


    Commissioner means the Commissioner of Corrections appointed pursuant to subsection 6(1); (commissaire)


    contraband means

    • (a) an intoxicant,

    • (b) a weapon or a component thereof, ammunition for a weapon, and anything that is designed to kill, injure or disable a person or that is altered so as to be capable of killing, injuring or disabling a person, when possessed without prior authorization,

    • (c) an explosive or a bomb or a component thereof,

    • (d) currency over any applicable prescribed limit, when possessed without prior authorization, and

    • (e) any item not described in paragraphs (a) to (d) that could jeopardize the security of a penitentiary or the safety of persons, when that item is possessed without prior authorization; (objets interdits)

    day parole

    day parole has the same meaning as in Part II; (semi-liberté)


    Indigenous, in respect of a person, includes a First Nation person, an Inuit or a Métis person; (autochtone)


    inmate means

    • (a) a person who is in a penitentiary pursuant to

      • (i) a sentence, committal or transfer to penitentiary, or

      • (ii) a condition imposed by the Parole Board of Canada in connection with day parole or statutory release, or

    • (b) a person who, having been sentenced, committed or transferred to penitentiary,

      • (i) is temporarily outside penitentiary by reason of a temporary absence or work release authorized under this Act, or

      • (ii) is temporarily outside penitentiary for reasons other than a temporary absence, work release, parole or statutory release, but is under the direction or supervision of a staff member or of a person authorized by the Service; (détenu)

    institutional head

    institutional head, in relation to a penitentiary, means the person who is normally in charge of the penitentiary; (Version anglaise seulement)


    intoxicant means a substance that, if taken into the body, has the potential to impair or alter judgment, behaviour or the capacity to recognize reality or meet the ordinary demands of life, but does not include caffeine, nicotine or any authorized medication used in accordance with directions given by a staff member or a registered health care professional; (substance intoxicante)

    long-term supervision

    long-term supervision means long-term supervision ordered under subsection 753(4), 753.01(5) or (6) or 753.1(3) or subparagraph 759(3)(a)(i) of the Criminal Code; (surveillance de longue durée)

    mental health assessment

    mental health assessment means an assessment of the mental health of a person conducted by a medical professional with recognized specialty training in mental health diagnosis and treatment, such as a psychiatrist, psychologist or psychiatric nurse or a primary care physician who has had psychiatric training. (évaluation de la santé mentale)


    Minister means the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness; (ministre)


    offender means

    • (a) an inmate, or

    • (b) a person who, having been sentenced, committed or transferred to penitentiary, is outside penitentiary

      • (i) by reason of parole or statutory release,

      • (ii) pursuant to an agreement referred to in subsection 81(1), or

      • (iii) pursuant to a court order; (délinquant)


    parole has the same meaning as in Part II; (libération conditionnelle)


    penitentiary means

    • (a) a facility of any description, including all lands connected therewith, that is operated, permanently or temporarily, by the Service for the care and custody of inmates, and

    • (b) any place declared to be a penitentiary pursuant to section 7; (pénitencier)


    prescribed means prescribed by regulation; (Version anglaise seulement)

    provincial parole board

    provincial parole board has the same meaning as in Part II; (commission provinciale)


    sentence means a sentence of imprisonment and includes

    • (a) a sentence imposed by a foreign entity on a Canadian offender who has been transferred to Canada under the International Transfer of Offenders Act, and

    • (b) a youth sentence imposed under the Youth Criminal Justice Act consisting of a custodial portion and a portion to be served under supervision in the community subject to conditions under paragraph 42(2)(n) of that Act or under conditional supervision under paragraph 42(2)(o), (q) or (r) of that Act; (peine ou peine d’emprisonnement)


    Service means the Correctional Service of Canada described in section 5; (Service)

    staff member

    staff member means an employee of the Service; (agent)

    statutory release

    statutory release has the same meaning as in Part II; (libération d’office)

    unescorted temporary absence

    unescorted temporary absence has the same meaning as in Part II; (permission de sortir sans escorte)


    victim, in respect of an offence, means an individual who has suffered physical or emotional harm, property damage or economic loss as the result of the commission of the offence; (victime)


    visitor means any person other than an inmate or a staff member; (visiteur)

    working day

    working day means a day on which offices of the federal public administration are generally open in the province in question. (jour ouvrable)

  • Marginal note:Exercise of powers, etc.

    (2) Except as otherwise provided by this Part or by regulations made under paragraph 96(b),

    • (a) powers, duties and functions that this Part assigns to the Commissioner may only be exercised or performed by the Commissioner or, where the Commissioner is absent or incapacitated or where the office is vacant, by the person acting in the place of the Commissioner; and

    • (b) powers, duties and functions that this Part assigns to the institutional head may only be exercised or performed by the institutional head or, where the institutional head is absent or incapacitated or where the office is vacant, by the person who, at the relevant time, is in charge of the penitentiary.

  • Marginal note:Acting on victim’s behalf

    (3) For the purposes of this Act, any of the following individuals may act on the victim’s behalf if the victim is dead or incapable of acting on their own behalf:

    • (a) the victim’s spouse, or if the victim is dead, their spouse at the time of death;

    • (b) the individual who is or was at the time of the victim’s death, cohabiting with them in a conjugal relationship, having so cohabited for a period of at least one year;

    • (c) a relative or a dependant of the victim;

    • (d) an individual who has in law or fact custody, or is responsible for the care or support, of the victim; and

    • (e) an individual who has in law or fact custody, or is responsible for the care or support, of a dependant of the victim.

  • Marginal note:Exception

    (4) For the purposes of this Act, an individual is not a victim, or entitled to act on a victim’s behalf, in relation to an offence, if the individual is the offender.

  • 1992, c. 20, s. 2
  • 1995, c. 42, s. 1
  • 1997, c. 17, s. 11
  • 2000, c. 12, s. 88
  • 2002, c. 1, s. 171
  • 2004, c. 21, s. 39
  • 2005, c. 10, s. 34
  • 2008, c. 6, s. 56
  • 2012, c. 1, ss. 52, 160, 196
  • 2015, c. 13, s. 45
  • 2019, c. 27, s. 1

Marginal note:Application to persons subject to long-term supervision order

 A person who is required to be supervised by a long-term supervision order is deemed to be an offender for the purposes of this Part, and sections 3, 4, 23 to 27, 55 and 56, subsections 57(2) and 66(3), sections 68, 69, 76, 77 and 79 to 82, paragraph 87(b) and sections 90 and 91 apply, with such modifications as the circumstances require, to the person and to the long-term supervision of that person.

  • 1997, c. 17, s. 12

Purpose and Principles

Marginal note:Purpose of correctional system

 The purpose of the federal correctional system is to contribute to the maintenance of a just, peaceful and safe society by

  • (a) carrying out sentences imposed by courts through the safe and humane custody and supervision of offenders; and

  • (b) assisting the rehabilitation of offenders and their reintegration into the community as law-abiding citizens through the provision of programs in penitentiaries and in the community.

Marginal note:Paramount consideration

 The protection of society is the paramount consideration for the Service in the corrections process.

  • 2012, c. 1, s. 54

Marginal note:Principles that guide Service

 The principles that guide the Service in achieving the purpose referred to in section 3 are as follows:

  • (a) the sentence is carried out having regard to all relevant available information, including the stated reasons and recommendations of the sentencing judge, the nature and gravity of the offence, the degree of responsibility of the offender, information from the trial or sentencing process, the release policies of and comments from the Parole Board of Canada and information obtained from victims, offenders and other components of the criminal justice system;

  • (b) the Service enhances its effectiveness and openness through the timely exchange of relevant information with victims, offenders and other components of the criminal justice system and through communication about its correctional policies and programs to victims, offenders and the public;

  • (c) the Service uses the least restrictive measures consistent with the protection of society, staff members and offenders;

  • (c.1) the Service considers alternatives to custody in a penitentiary, including the alternatives referred to in sections 29 and 81;

  • (c.2) the Service ensures the effective delivery of programs to offenders, including correctional, educational, vocational training and volunteer programs, with a view to improving access to alternatives to custody in a penitentiary and to promoting rehabilitation;

  • (d) offenders retain the rights of all members of society except those that are, as a consequence of the sentence, lawfully and necessarily removed or restricted;

  • (e) the Service facilitates the involvement of members of the public in matters relating to the operations of the Service;

  • (f) correctional decisions are made in a forthright and fair manner, with access by the offender to an effective grievance procedure;

  • (g) correctional policies, programs and practices respect gender, ethnic, cultural, religious and linguistic differences, sexual orientation and gender identity and expression, and are responsive to the special needs of women, Indigenous persons, visible minorities, persons requiring mental health care and other groups;

  • (h) offenders are expected to obey penitentiary rules and conditions governing temporary absences, work release, parole, statutory release and long-term supervision and to actively participate in meeting the objectives of their correctional plans, including by participating in programs designed to promote their rehabilitation and reintegration; and

  • (i) staff members are properly selected and trained and are given

    • (i) appropriate career development opportunities,

    • (ii) good working conditions, including a workplace environment that is free of practices that undermine a person’s sense of personal dignity, and

    • (iii) opportunities to participate in the development of correctional policies and programs.

Correctional Service of Canada

Marginal note:Correctional Service of Canada

 There shall continue to be a correctional service in and for Canada, to be known as the Correctional Service of Canada, which shall be responsible for

  • (a) the care and custody of inmates;

  • (b) the provision of programs that contribute to the rehabilitation of offenders and to their successful reintegration into the community;

  • (c) the preparation of inmates for release;

  • (d) parole, statutory release supervision and long-term supervision of offenders; and

  • (e) maintaining a program of public education about the operations of the Service.

  • 1992, c. 20, s. 5
  • 1997, c. 17, s. 13

Marginal note:Commissioner

  •  (1) The Governor in Council may appoint a person to be known as the Commissioner of Corrections who, under the direction of the Minister, has the control and management of the Service and all matters connected with the Service.

  • Marginal note:National headquarters

    (2) The national headquarters of the Service and the offices of the Commissioner shall be in the National Capital Region described in the schedule to the National Capital Act.

  • Marginal note:Regional headquarters

    (3) The Commissioner may establish regional headquarters of the Service.

Marginal note:Penitentiaries

  •  (1) Subject to subsection (3), the Commissioner may, by order, declare any prison as defined in the Prisons and Reformatories Act, or any hospital, to be a penitentiary in respect of any person or class of persons.

  • Marginal note:Idem

    (2) Subject to subsection (3), the Governor in Council may, by order, declare any place to be a penitentiary.

  • Marginal note:Provincial approval

    (3) No prison, hospital or place administered or supervised under the authority of an Act of the legislature of a province may be declared a penitentiary under subsection (1) or (2) without the approval of an officer designated by the lieutenant governor of that province.


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