MCK signs deal with Corrections Canada with hopes for bigger deal down the road

A new deal with Corrections Services Canada (CSC) for supervision of paroled inmates will mean more revenue and more resources for those tasked with the job of reintegrating released inmates back into the community, an MCK chief said.

The new deal with CSC will make Kahnawake and its Public Safety Unit fully responsible for supervising and reintegrating paroled inmates into the community. Through this agreement the Public Safety Unit will be funded integrally in a way it never has been since the community first started supervising paroled inmates in 2006, said Mohawk Council of Kahnawake Chief Ryan Montour.

“We will be funded more in three months than we have been in the last 16 years,” said Montour. The pro-rated deal – which was signed in December and will run through March – brought in $15,000.

That’s a good windfall and will allow the Public Safety to spend more time on parole cases.

“We have a lot of success because there are a lot of support systems for released inmates in Kahnawake. As you know inmates have a right to be released back into their home communities and because there are 1,000 eyes on them here pretty much all the time, we have been successful in reintegrating a lot of people,” Montour said. “Because it’s such a tight-knit community we’re able to give them the support they need.”

The deal will run through March, at which point the MCK is hoping to renew the agreement for up to three more years—and at a higher rate than the $36,000 pro-rated annual rate they are currently working on.

“I think we’re the best in Canada at this, and we are hoping for more revenue in the 2023-2024 and 2024-2025 fiscal years. We know that CSC knows we have had success and it’s significant because we think that can increase the revenue for those years,” and beyond, Montour said.

That interest in renewing the deal is proof positive that Kahnawake has had success in limiting recidivism, Montour added.

“It’s validation of the good job we’ve done and that we will continue to do,” Montour said.

Montour himself is a reformed inmate who has turned his life around and did it thanks to the support of the community.

“I came out of this program and I’m proof that our system works,” he said. “We know this is important work and we will continue to work hard on the file.”

Marc Lalonde, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Iori:wase