Monday, January 23, 2017

Amnesty International Canada Report on Making 2017 "A Year for Human Rights"

Amnesty International has released its annual human rights agenda for Canada entitled A Year to Get it Right.

It provides a list of 35 recommendations for the Canadian government including:
  • halting construction of the Site C dam in northeastern British Columbia
  • beginning implementation of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
  • increasing accountability for Canadian extractive companies operating abroad
  • adopting a human rights-based approach to national security
  • and much more on issues ranging from gender equality to refugees and foreign policy
Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada’s English Branch, and Béatrice Vaugrante, Director General of Amnesty International Canada’s Francophone Branch, explained the rationale behind the report in a commentary published this morning in the pages of The Ottawa Citizen:
"There will be much pressure on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to appease new counterparts, south of the border and elsewhere, who have come to power having fuelled discrimination and division. But there can be no room to waiver. Respect for human rights must be at the heart of what Canada seeks to advance around the world, as never before."

"2017 must be a year for human rights."

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Sunday, January 22, 2017

New Publication – Voices: Topics in Canadian Librarianship

The website Librarianship.ca has launched a new publication called Voices: Topics in Canadian Librarianship that will draw attention to experiences that have inspired librarians:
"We are launching this new publication with stories from members of our community about those experiences that were satisfying, gratifying, or grounding to them in a way that made them PROUD to be a library professional."
"It is these stories and memories that are so dear that recalling them can elevate our moods and we find ourselves looking back to them from time to time. They are our Library Happy Places when the world around us is dark and gloomy."

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Thursday, January 19, 2017

Statistics Canada Article on Organized Crime

The Statistics Canada publication Juristat published an article yesterday on Measuring organized crime in Canada: Results of a pilot project:
"Organized crime has long been identified as a government priority and a public safety issue. As a result of high profile incidents in the 1990s and extensive consultations by the government, the Criminal Code of Canada was amended in 1997 to help identify criminal organizations and to protect justice system participants (...) The aim of this and subsequent legislation was to provide law enforcement and justice officials with tools to respond to organized crime, including a clear national definition of a criminal organization (...), broader powers through sentencing guidelines, and the ability to seize property obtained for the benefit of organized crime (... )"
"To address the issue of organized crime, data are needed to inform both resourcing and policy questions related to detection, prevention and officer and public safety. Recent reports have indicated that the complexity of organized crime creates additional resource demands on policing (...). Further, the nature of organized crime is to constantly evolve to adapt and exploit new opportunities—characteristics which, without data and data sharing among law enforcement and those responsible for public safety, make it even more challenging to fight (...). Despite the need for data to inform resourcing and policy, there are currently no standardized data to monitor the nature and extent of organized crime at the national, provincial/territorial or local levels."
"This Juristat article provides an overview of existing measures of organized crime in Canada and raises awareness regarding data availability and the efforts being made to collect national police-reported data through the Uniform Crime Reporting Survey (UCR). The article draws from a pilot project launched to determine best practices in the collection of police-reported data on organized crime."

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Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Supreme Court of Canada: 2016 in Numbers

The Court.ca, the blog of the Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto, has published a statistical overview of the decisions the Supreme Court of Canada delivered in 2016:
"2016 was a fairly quiet year for the Supreme Court.  In total, 60 appeals were decided through 55 individually indexed reasons for judgment.  Some appeals were heard and decided together, accounting for the difference between appeals heard and judgments rendered. Of those 55 reasons, 12 were given orally."
"The number of reasons released in 2016 is down from the 65 reasons given in 2016 (12 orally), and the 76 given in 2014 (21 orally).  Indeed, last year’s activity continues a general downward trend in the number of decisions released annually.  There are many reasons that may help explain this, including an increasing complexity of legal questions at issue before the Supreme Court."
The article looks at applications for leave to appeal, the disposition of the cases heard, the number of unanimous vs. split decisions, the length of the Court's judgments, and also offers stats for each judge.

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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Supreme Court of Canada: New Library Titles

The list of new library titles added to the Supreme Court of Canada collection from January 1 to 15, 2017 is now available on the Court website.

It is possible to subscribe via e-mail to receive the list.

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Freshly Minted Profiles of Library and Information Studies Students and Grads

The website Librarianship.ca has been running a series of profiles called  Freshly Minted since 2013.

The series introduces Canadians who are studying for the Master's program in Library/Information Studies or who have recently graduated and are now working in the field.

The most recent instalment is about Lorisia MacLeod, a student at the School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alberta:
"Is there one aspect of the profession that surprises you that you were not expecting when you started the program? What is it?
I was pleasantly surprised about how accessible everyone in the field is to students. Before starting classes I contacted all of my professors to meet with them and every single one was willing to take time out of their busy day to meet with me. Even beyond that there was directors and managers that when I reached out were very happy to sit down and talk about their training and knowledge base. I guess I thought that as a student, important people wouldn’t have much time for me but I was pleasantly surprised with how supportive the field is of their students."

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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Senator Murray Sinclair's Residential School Reading List

Canadian Senator Murray Sinclair, the former Chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, has produced a Residential school reading list:
"Many of you have asked for a reading list on the topic of residential schools. Ask and ye shall receive. Here’s part of a larger reading list I use."

"There are several related topics of course which I recommend people take a look at such as Genocide, Colonization/Decolonization, Indigenous activism, child welfare and Indigenous children, Indigenous people and the Justice system etc. I also highly recommend all of Vine Deloria’s books, Thomas King’s Inconvenient Indian, Richard Wagamese’s book Indian Horse, all of the Research papers compiled by the Aboriginal Healing Foundation ... and the website of the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation ..."
In 2015, the Commission released its findings after its years-long investigation into the many abuses against Indigenous children at Church-run Indian Residential Schools in the 19th and 20th centuries.

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Upcoming Ottawa Conference on the Charter and Emerging Issues in Constitutional Rights and Freedoms: From 1982 to 2032

The University of Ottawa is organizing a conference entitled Charter and Emerging Issues in Constitutional Rights and Freedoms: From 1982 to 2032 on March 8-10, 2017:
"Our conference will bring together leading constitutional scholars, as well as community leaders and policy makers to discuss and examine the possibilities and challenges for constitutional rights and freedoms over the next 10-15 years. The conference will begin on the evening of Wednesday, March 8, 2017 with a public debate on 'Resolved: The Charter Revolution is Over'. There will be a reception at the Supreme Court of Canada on the evening of Thursday, March 9, 2017."

"The Honourable Mr. Justice Richard Wagner of the Supreme Court of Canada will deliver a keynote address."
The conference is part of the Constitution 150 project, a year-long partnership of the Public Law Group at the University of Ottawa, the Centre for Constitutional Studies, the University of Alberta, and the Université de Montréal.

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Statistics Canada Article on Trends in Remand Over Past Decade

The Statistics Canada publication Juristat yesterday published an article entitled Trends in the use of remand in Canada, 2004/2005 to 2014/2015.

It looks at trends in the number of adults and youth being held in remand (pre-trial detention) in the period from 2004/2005 to 2014/2015.

Among the highlights:
  • In 2014/2015, on an average day, there were more adults in custody awaiting trial than there were convicted offenders serving time in sentenced custody. Provincial and territorial correctional facilities across the country supervised an average of 24,014 adults per day in sentenced custody and pre-trial detention; 13,650 of them, or 57%, were in pre-trial custody (remand).
  • In provincial and territorial correctional facilities, the average daily number of adults awaiting trial in remand has exceeded the number in sentenced custody since 2004/2005.
  • In comparison to ten years earlier, the number of adults in remand has grown almost six times more than the number in sentenced custody. From 2004/2005 to 2014/2015, the average daily adult remand population increased 39%, while the average daily sentenced custody population was up 7%.
  • All provinces and territories saw their adult remand numbers climb between 2004/2005 and 2014/2015. There have been particularly large increases in average daily counts in Nova Scotia (+192%), Northwest Territories (+139%), Manitoba (+134%) and Alberta (+109%).
  • One in four adults (25%) admitted to remand in 2014/2015 were Aboriginal persons (excluding Alberta and Prince Edward Island). This is about 8 times greater than the representation of Aboriginal persons in the overall population (3%).
  • Similar to the situation for adults, on an average day in 2014/2015, there were more youth aged 12 to 17 in pre-trial detention (561 or 56%) than were in sentenced custody (448 or 44%) (excluding Quebec). There have been, on average, more youth in pre-trial detention than sentenced custody since 2007/2008.
  • Unlike the findings for adults, the average number of youth in pre-trial detention has been declining, mirroring the notable drop in the number of youth charged with a crime in recent years.
  • In 2014/2015, more than one-third (36%) of youth admissions to pre-trial detention (in the eight jurisdictions where information was available) was an Aboriginal youth. This was about five times their representation in the general population (7%). In 2004/2005, Aboriginal youth accounted for 21% of admissions to pre-trial detention. In comparison to pre-trial detention, Aboriginal youth accounted for a larger share of admissions to sentenced custody in both 2004/2005 (26%) and 2014/2015 (40%).

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Call for Nominations for Denis Marshall Memorial Award for Excellence in Law Librarianship

The Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) is seeking nominations for the Denis Marshall Memorial Award for Excellence in Law Librarianship:
"This award is an honour bestowed upon a current member of CALL/ACBD who has provided outstanding service to the Association AND/OR enhanced the profession of law librarianship in the recent past. The specific contributions  must reflect the qualities embodied by Denis Marshall:
  • a continued commitment to excellence in law librarianship;
  • a strong service ethic;
  • a commitment to continuous learning;
  • a significant contribution to the scholarship of the library profession;
  • mentoring and encouraging those who seek a profession in law librarianship;
  • the pursuit of innovation and/or innovative solutions;
  • and/or a contribution to leadership in the law library profession. "
The name of the nominated person must be accompanied by two signed letters from colleagues in support of the nominee, with names and signatures of three additional CALL members supporting the nomination.

Nominations should be sent in by April 1, 2017.

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Monday, January 09, 2017

January 2017 Issue of Governance and Recordkeeping Around the World

The Governance and Recordkeeping Around the World newsletter, published by Library and Archives Canada (LAC), highlights issues pertaining to government and recordkeeping practices in the public and private sectors around the world.

The January 2017 issue has just been published.

It includes:
  • news items from Canada and around the world 
  • announcements of upcoming Canadian and international events (meetings, conferences, seminars) 
  • project and product news in areas such as digitization, archives, open source, e-government, access to information and Web 2.0 
  • listings of papers and readings (white papers, presentations, reports)

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Sunday, January 08, 2017

Library-Related Highlights from the Canadian Government's 2015-16 Departmental Performance Reports

Last month, the website Librarianship.ca published Highlights from the 2015-16 Departmental Performance Reports.

Every year, the President of the Treasury Board, a federal Cabinet minister, tables Departmental Performance Reports (DPRs) on behalf of dozens of federal government departments and agencies:
"Departmental Performance Reports are a measure of how well individual organizations met their plans and expected results as set out in their respective annual Reports on Plans and Priorities, including those for internal services."

"Below are some highlights of interest to the Canadian library and information management community as identified by individual departments and agencies."
The article includes excerpts from the DPR of the Supreme Court of Canada that covers IT risks (cyber attacks), electronic case management, the implementation of a new document management system by the Library and Information Management Branch and changes in the Court Records Centre.

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Thursday, January 05, 2017

January 2017 Issue of In Session - E-Newsletter of Canadian Association of Law Libraries


The January 2017 issue of In Session is available online.

It is the monthly e-newsletter of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries (CALL) and contains news from CALL committees and special interest groups, member updates and events.

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Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Supreme Court of Canada: New Library Titles

The list of new library titles added to the Supreme Court of Canada collection in the month of December, 2016 is now available on the Court website.

It is possible to subscribe via e-mail to receive the list.

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Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Supreme Court of Canada Calendar of Upcoming Hearings

The Supreme Court of Canada has published its calendar of appeal hearings for January 2017.

To find out more about any particular case, the Court's website has a section that allows users to find docket information, case summaries as well as facta from the parties. All you need to do is click on a case name.

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