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CBC: Overcrowding, discrimination identified in review of South West Detention Centre

The CBC is reporting that a review of conditions at the South West Detention Centre in Windsor has identified problems with overcrowding, discrimination and poor management practices. The review was conducted by the Centre for Conflict Resolution International and paid for by the Ministry of the Solicitor General.

Among its findings, the report said senior leaders are either absent or heavy-handed in dealing with workplace challenges, leading to a culture of fear and distrust in leadership. It also noted that the approach leadership has taken to disputes over an increased inmate population, workplace safety and staff shortages is top-down and non-collaborative.

Chad Oldfield, who sits on the ministry-employee relations committee for OPSEU/SEFPO, said the issues are long-standing, adding that resource and staffing issues have been flagged for years. After catching up a bit, difficulties have returned.

“Now we’re significantly short-staffed again right across the board, and morale is way, way down in institutions. This is kind of the cyclical cycle that we’re stuck in,” he said.