Research Publications

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Collaborative Publications:

Life(r)’s Work: An Historical Analysis and Evaluation of a Program for Life Sentenced People in Canada (2017)

SLSC is proud to have supported the development of Life(r)’s Work: An Historical Analysis and Evaluation of a Program for Life Sentenced People in Canada with the PeerLife Collaborative. This report provides a comprehensive assessment of the LifeLine® program based on an analysis of historical data. It also evaluates work that has been undertaken following the loss of Government funding in 2012, and provides recommendations for building on the strengths of this internationally recognized, award-winning service.

SLSC’s Publications:

Life(r)’s Work: Developing a Modernized Strategy for Life-Sentenced People in Canada (2019)

The objective of this project is to inform an enhanced strategy for life-sentenced people in Canada by building on recommendations identified in an evaluation of the former LifeLine®/Option Vie® program, and, enhancing the capacity of the PeerLife Collaborative (PLC) to provide services to life-sentenced people. This is done to set the stage for supporting countless lifers over the long-term and ultimately facilitate their successful integration into the community. SLSC worked in collaboration with the PLC to provide CSC with an up to date program that can be implemented following the completion of this project. This report details the project work plan, how objectives were met, expected outcomes, and provides additional considerations and recommendations to support policy development and knowledge dissemination activities related to an enhanced strategy for life-sentenced people in Canada. Funding for this project provided from the Department of Public Safety Canada’s Policy Development Contribution Program.

Beyond Custody: Positive Pathways to Housing for Youth in Conflict with the Law (2018)

SLSC and St. Leonard’s Home Trenton worked together to develop Beyond Custody: Positive Pathways to Housing for Youth in Conflict with the Law. This project built on SLSC’s research findings to assist SLHT with developing and improving pathways to housing for young people beyond a custodial sentence, and enhancing strategic partnerships with local stakeholders. The main objective was to undertake a data collection initiative that provided SLHT with a snapshot of the housing trajectories of youth who are exiting their residential program. This project was funded under the Innovative Solutions to Homelessness (ISH) branch of the Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS) at Employment and Social Development Canada.

SLSC Train the Trainer Workshop: Problematic Substance Use,  Consolidated Report (2017)

SLSC has collaborated with the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction (CCSA) and Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) to develop and apply a modified version of SLSC’s 2014 Train the Trainer: Peer Mentoring Workshop for individuals with a history of problematic substance abuse. This is part of a larger initiative co-chaired by CCSA and CSC, Addressing Offenders’ Problematic Substance Use (AOPSU). The AOPSU project is based on the knowledge that problematic substance use (PSU) is a known risk factor contributing to recidivism and a potential barrier to successful community reintegration following release from a correctional institution. The objective of the AOPSU project is to address the risk factors related to PSU by promoting evidence-informed practices that help successfully reintegrate people with PSU into the community.

Social Enterprise and Labour Market Integration for Individuals Exiting the Criminal Justice System – A Synthesis of Pilot Project Evaluation (2015) / Les entreprises sociales et l’intégration au marché du travail des individus qui sortent du système de justice pénale – une synthèse d’évaluation de projets pilotes (2015)

SLSC completed a synthesis of independent evaluations of social enterprises funded through the Federal Horizontal Pilot Projects (FHPP) program. In total, data from five separate organizations’ social enterprise program evaluations were aggregated to inform Employment and Social Development Canada on labour market integration for individuals exiting the criminal justice system. The goals of the evaluations were unique to each organization; however, the success of the program and its usefulness in relation to successful integration was a common factor. The report also highlights limitations, successes, and challenges associated with social enterprises who employ people involved in the criminal justice sector. This project was supported by the Government of Canada’s Homelessness Partnering Strategy.

Literature Summary Promising Practices for Train the Trainer in Peer Mentoring Workshop (2014).

This literature summary on peer mentoring and effective training models focuses on identifying the components seen as critical in providing effective peer-to-peer training. The following three main components were identified: choosing the right trainer, using an effective training technique, and considering appropriate training topics. This summary supported the development of SLSC’s ‘Train-the-Trainer in Peer Mentoring’ Workshop and was funded by Public Safety Canada.

Homes for the Hard to House: Testing the H2H Model Final Report (2014) / Un chez-soi pour les personnes difficiles à loger: Mise à l’essai du Modèle pour les personnes difficiles à loger (PDL) (2014)

The objective of this pilot project was to test the efficacy of SLSC’s Hard to House (H2H) Model. This was achieved by creating a partnership with key stakeholders to implement the H2H model at two existing second stage housing facilities. It measured the outcomes for second stage housing (SSH) based on implementation of the model, and evaluated the model’s ability to enhance outcomes for service providers and their clients. This research project focuses on the SSH site operated by Maison Cross Roads Corporation (MCR) that provides a variety of services to federally sentenced persons. This study focused specifically on MCR’s second stage housing program called Service Oxygène®. This project was supported by Employment and Social Development Canada.

Towards an Integrated Network Second Edition (2013)

This article revisits research that has been conducted regarding the criminalization of people with mental health problems and illnesses. It features updated information and promising practices identified since the original 2008 edition of the report. The report aims to increase community awareness of this issue, support knowledge exchange, make academic resources available, promote cross-sectoral collaboration, and highlight jurisdictional and policy-related issues. Topics covered include: current challenges and concerns for the mental health service delivery network, developing a model community mental health strategy, policies affecting the criminalization of persons with mental health problems and illnesses, and the recommendations from the 2008 Towards an Integrated Network. This project was supported by the Law Foundation of Ontario.

Homes for the Hard to House: H2H Model (2012)

This report outlines promising practices for establishing/improving effective second-stage housing (SSH) programs in Canada. The Hard to House model examines effective strategies related to identifying funding streams, supporting and engaging staff, and prioritizing specific needs of residents. This report was informed by SSH service providers and presents lessons learned and recommendations to support others to effectively approach challenges, program design, and establishing relationships with others in the community. This project was funded by Employment and Social Development Canada.

Homes for the ‘Hard to House’ Research Findings Report (2012)

This report highlights the research that informed the Hard to House Model. Sources included surveys, interviews, and academic literature. The unique needs that various at-risk populations have in relation to housing are discussed. Some of these populations include women, Aboriginal Peoples, and seniors. Promising practices and results from the surveys are provided. This report was produced with support from Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, Public Safety Canada, and Correctional Service of Canada.

Community Connections: The Key to Community Corrections for Individuals with Mental Health Disorders 2010 / L’Engagement communautaire: La clé de services correctionnels communautaires à l’intention (2010)

This report suggests four major principles to consider when working to reintegrate and establish community connections for residents of Community-based Residential Facilities (CBRFs) living with mental health disorders. This includes: 1. accurate diagnoses, treatment, and discharge planning beginning within the prison; 2. successful in-reach efforts between CBRFs and the person prior to their release; 3. successful partnerships between the CBRF, the resident, and at least one mental health partner—inclusive of a mental health agency within the local community; and finally, 4. adequate discharge planning that involves the establishment of a support system that can and will be accessed by clients upon warrant expiry. This report was supported by Public Safety Canada, Correctional Service of Canada, and Law Foundation of Ontario.

Towards an Integrated Network: Working Together to Avoid Criminalization of People with Mental Health Problems (2008) / Vers un réseau intégré: Travailler ensemble pour éviter la criminalisation de personnes aux prises avec des problèmes de santé mentale (2008)

This report reviews existing research and information provided by public service officials and other subject matter experts on the criminalization of persons with mental health problems. The report aims to educate the public about the needs of individuals with mental health issues within a criminal justice context. It also brings different sectors together to work towards effective crime prevention strategies. Additionally, various difficulties individuals with mental health problems face are highlighted. Some difficulties include discrimination, stigma, and finding housing and employment. Finally, a strategy devised by St. Leonard’s Society of Canada and the Canadian Criminal Justice Association on how to reduce the criminalization of individuals with mental illnesses is presented. This project was supported by Public Safety Canada and the Law Foundation of Ontario.

Good Practices Manual: Principles to Practice (2007)

This report discusses what is needed to create a safe and supportive environment for residents of Community-based Residential Facilities. Strategies used to ensure the needs of residents are met are outlined. Programs for various populations including: community-based programs, Aboriginal programs, and women’s programs are discussed. Ways to connect with the community – and the benefits for the neighbourhood and residents in doing so – are described. This report was supported by the National Crime Prevention Centre, specifically, their Policing, Corrections and Communities Fund.