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December 1, 2020 49 min

Warning to listeners: this episode contains descriptions of physical and psychological abuse, self harm, and suicide. The United Nations has declared solitary confinement to be a form of torture, so why do Canadian prisons still employ the practice? Today, Justice Vs. looks at how and why solitary confinement is used within the Canadian criminal justice system and the impact it has on those who are subjected to it. We speak with Noa Mendelsohn Aviv, director of CCLA’s Expression and Equality programs, and Rachel Fayter, a PhD. candidate in the Department of Criminology at the University of Ottawa, who describes her experience being held in prolonged solitary confinement and her academic work investigating it’s particular impact on women and those experiencing mental illness.

The John Howard Society does extensive work advocating for the rights of prisoners as well as offering reintegration services for people leaving the correctional system. For information on volunteer opportunities see:
PASAN is a community-based prisoner health organization which focuses on harm reduction through providing support services and advocacy to prisoners and ex-prisoners in Canada. To find out more, see:
The Canadian Criminal Justice Association seeks to promote more efficient, humane, rational, and equitable justice system. They can be found at:
Elizabeth Fry provides women with counselling services, employment supports, housing services, and more while subsequently advocating for a more inclusive and equitable criminal justice system. To find out how you can help, find them at:

General Info – Segregation  

Cole, David. “Final Report of the Independent Reviewer on the Ontario Ministry of the Solicitor General’s Compliance with the 2013 “Jahn Settlement Agreement” and the Terms of the Consent Order of January 16, 2018 Issued by the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario”. February 2020. Retrieved from: 

Jackson, Michael. “Solitary: A case for Abolition”. West Coast Prison Journal. November 2016. Retrieved from: 

John Howard Society. “Solitary Confinement Factsheet”. 2017. Retrieved from: 

Rachel Fayter 

Fayter, Rachel. “Rachel Fayter Biography”. n.d. Retrieved from: 

CBC Radio. “Former Inmates Re-Invent Themselves as Criminologists”. March 2018. Retrieved from:

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