I'd heard the horror stories about prison. I'd seen the TV shows, movies, and news reports about the rampant violence, race-based wars, and sexual abuse that occurs behind the walls. I heard the advice from friends on how to survive in jail. Some say to find the biggest guy on a range what inmates call a cell block and pick a fight with him immediately.
Some say to keep your head down and stick to yourself. Some say to go into protective custody. But above all, don't drop the soap. So when I spoke to my lawyer for the first time and heard I was facing over two years in prison, I was scared—two years and over in Canada means time in a federal penitentiary. I was 5'9", weighed less than pounds, and was overall a very docile person. I didn't know how I'd make it two years in the pen. The Crown offered me an olive branch and I turned it down because, above all, there was the cardinal rule—don't snitch.
The Crown argued that since the police were still looking for more accomplices, and that I mainly worked unsupervised from a company truck for my job, there was a risk I could compromise the police's investigation. During my time there, EMDC gained a lot of public notoriety, and became the subject of a class-action lawsuit full disclosure: I'm a member of the suit for civil-rights violations and deplorable living conditions. It was a place where no cameras existed this has changed since my time, thoughand lockdowns were a near-daily occurrence.
For the first four weeks I sat in the exact same spot day-in and day-out, staring at the reflection through a cell-door window to make sure nobody would sneak up behind me. I was out of my element—a nerdy-looking, brown-skinned year-old whom everybody believed was in for some petty crime. Nobody talked to me except to measure me up and see if they could try and punk me. Until they found out I was in for doing a home invasion on an alleged drug dealer and that, no matter what, I was going "down below," as the inmates say in reference to federal time.
Then the former pen-timers took notice and took me under their wing. They liked me because I was quiet, respectful, and didn't get involved in anybody's business. They told me that the pen was full of guys like me—mature men who just want to do their own time. They told me that nobody ever really gets raped in jail because the general population looks down on it like they look down on a man raping a woman—except the victim would probably get beat down too.
They told me that, typically, the "heavies" prison versions of bullies don't last in the pen because nobody will tolerate them. They told me to have the utmost respect for lifers because they have nothing to lose, but not to trust them either for the same reason. They told me if I could stay out of trouble, my time would fly by.Thinking of your experience with tvo.
The smell of brewing coffee fills my nose and jolts me out of bed. I slip on my brand new Nike Flyknits, stretch my arms over my head and crack open the window to let the cool breeze and the smell of the lake inside. From outside, the sounds of adult men talking and the crunch of gravel under their feet fills my room. I make my bed, organize the schoolwork I have scattered on my desk, and walk out my six-by-ten-foot living quarters into the common area. For many people, this is what morning life in a penitentiary is like.
They fix themselves coffee, wish each other a good morning, get ready for work by storing lunches in Tupperware containers, and do last-minute chores. In reality, life in prison is not full of despair. Yet in the eight and a half years I served, I learned its limits in rehabilitating inmates. I wipe off the greasy mouthpiece and call my son, Markus.
A guard in a jet-black Corrections Service Canada uniform sometimes greets me. Then I head to work. Ten students sit in a semi-circle around a gold-haired teacher who has wrinkles around her mouth from decades of smoking. At lunchtime I again go through metal detectors, this time getting a pat-down because I forgot to take my keys out of my pocket. One more metal detector on my way to the mess hall and I finally get to eat.
I wear my own clothes. I bought my own TV to keep in my room for times when I need to be alone, and I read novels and play chess. I can go to school or work full-time. I actually smile — really smile — a lot. For me, prison is much safer than the streets I came from.During these challenging times, we guarantee we will work tirelessly to support you. We will continue to give you accurate and timely information throughout the crisis, and we will deliver on our mission — to help everyone in the world learn how to do anything — no matter what.
Thank you to our community and to all of our readers who are working to aid others in this time of crisis, and to all of those who are making personal sacrifices for the good of their communities. We will get through this together. Updated: April 2, References. If you have been sentenced to federal prison, you will become the property of the Bureau Of Prisons commonly known as BOP. If you have been given a federal sentence, it is likely that you'll be spending several years behind bars; but if you know what to expect right away, your life in prison will be much easier.
Together, they cited information from 13 references. Learn more Explore this Article Getting Ready for Prison. Surviving in Prison. Tips and Warnings. Related Articles. Article Summary. Part 1 of Bite your tongue. If the judge doesn't allow you to self-surrender to the prison where you have been designated, you will be handed over to the U.In the course of assisting her clients over the years, she has compiled an essential guide to managing jail.
Below is her list she has very generously allowed us to post for the benefit of a wide audience and in particular, those knowing that they will be spending time in an Ontario jail. To learn more, you can contact Ruth directly at When an accused is sentenced to custody they will be serving their sentence in either a Provincial or Federal institution.
Sentences of two years less a day will be served in a Provincial facility. Sentences of two years or more will be served in a Federal penitentiary. Federal inmates are under the auspices of Corrections Services Canada.
This pamphlet is intended as a guideline only.
How to Survive Prison or Jail if You Are Asian
For more detailed information, contact the institution where you will be starting your sentence. Inmates in Provincial jails are permitted to have a canteen account.
You should check your balance in this account before having someone send in or drop off additional funds. Inmates at Provincial jails are permitted to have visitors.
Visitors are required to show two pieces of identification. Contact the institution for more information about visiting hours, and regulations. A social worker will meet with you after you have been sentenced, for classification to determine where you will serve your sentence. If you wish to work whilst you are serving your sentence, speak to your social worker or classification officer. You will be able to call collect from the Institution. Remember that all communication with people inside and outside jail is monitored.
This includes telephone calls. The ONLY exception to this is communication with your lawyer. At your sentencing, the Judge may order that you not communicate with certain people whilst you are in custody. This order remains in place until your sentence has been completed. Inmates in Federal penitentiaries are permitted to have a canteen account.During these challenging times, we guarantee we will work tirelessly to support you. We will continue to give you accurate and timely information throughout the crisis, and we will deliver on our mission — to help everyone in the world learn how to do anything — no matter what.
Thank you to our community and to all of our readers who are working to aid others in this time of crisis, and to all of those who are making personal sacrifices for the good of their communities. We will get through this together. Jail and prison are two different institutions. Prisons are operated by the state and federal government and hold people convicted of crimes and sentenced for more than one year. Both institutions provide specialized services, but depending on where you end up, those services will differ.
The list could go on and on, but what is certain is that some basic preparation will help you in either situation.
Think of yourself as an anthropologist, learning the rules of a new society. If you can do this and keep your cool, you can make your time served easier for yourself. Preparing for jail involves finding out about how things work in your jail and getting in the right state of mind.
You should also ask about what educational, religious, and work programs your prison offers, so you can make the most of your time. Jail can be stressful, but plan to distract yourself by working out and learning new things. For more tips from our Legal co-author, including how to get your finances in order before you go to jail, read on.
Did this summary help you? Yes No. Log in Facebook Loading Google Loading Civic Loading No account yet? Create an account.Nearly people have died in Canadian provincial jails over the past five years. Two-thirds of them were legally innocent.A Day in Jail
While the growing population of prisoners awaiting trial has been well documented, the disproportionate death toll in provincial jails has not.
Provincial governments declined to identify the dead, citing privacy concerns. Interviews, inquest documents and news reports, however, show the deceased prisoners awaiting trial ranged from young parents who had breached bail conditions to people with chronic mental illness jailed for uttering threats; from accused murderers to addicts jailed for theft or drug-related charges.
Reuters examined deaths in provincial jails from January through July for seven of 10 Canadian provinces. Of the remaining three, one had no deaths and the other two did not provide data broken down by custodial status.
The review found that people died in provincial jails while awaiting trial, compared to 80 who died while serving sentences. These figures are high even when one takes into account the disproportionate number of pre-trial detainees in jails: People awaiting trial comprised 56 per cent of all inmates in these provinces over that time period, but 65 per cent of the dead.
All the provinces Reuters spoke with said inmate and officer safety are their top priority and that they take all in-custody deaths seriously. Prisoners awaiting trial accounted for 59 per cent of the total number of inmates in provincial jails inup from 27 percent inaccording to Statistics Canada. By comparison, people who have not been convicted make up about 20 per cent of inmates in state and local institutions in the United States, according to the U. But the president of the Canadian Association of Crown Counsel, which represents prosecutors, disputes that.
The governments of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia told Reuters they were reviewing their penal systems in an effort to reduce the number of people locked up while awaiting trial. Several said they were also trying to improve jail procedures to ensure better care of prisoners. Manitoba, which launched a review after a spate of deaths at a pre-trial detention center last year, is the only province investigating deaths among prisoners awaiting trial.
In neighboring Saskatchewan, each in-custody death is reviewed on a case-by-case basis, Justice Ministry spokesman Noel Busse wrote in an email.
What It’s Really Like to Spend Time in a Canadian Prison
Seventy-five per cent of deaths in custody in Saskatchewan over the past five years have involved prisoners awaiting trial, the Reuters review shows. A nurse evaluated Reed and did not deem him a suicide risk, according to inquest documents. Only hours after being arrested, Reed was found hanging from his cell door. Reed, who was an alcoholic, had said if he ever went back to jail he would take his life, his godmother Suzanne Lajambe told Reuters. We believed that. Until that happened.
In response to the inquest, the jail implemented a new suicide screening procedure, a spokesman for Ontario Corrections Minister Marie-France Lalonde said. Almost as many people died in Ontario jails in the first half of this year 13 as died in all of the last year 14provincial data shows.
All but two were prisoners awaiting trial. Reuters traced the causes of death for of the cases through inquests, government data interviews and news reports.So we must learn to unfortunately survive winter in Canada! I get my period every month, and complain about that too. In all fairness, there are some wonderful things about winter in Canada: those mornings when you look outside and the world seems still, the frost has lined the branches of the trees and everywhere is sparkling.
The crisp air that means I need lots of blankets — and I happen to have LOTS of blankets — and peppermint hot chocolate are amazing. Having an excuse not to go out on a Friday night is great sometimes, too. Some things about winter are wonderful. Here are some tips to help you survive winter in Canada, but disclaimer: these are not tips on how to start a fire, dig yourself out of a ditch or actual survival tips!
These are simply pointers on how to make the upcoming season tolerable and only mildly inconvenient.
What I Learned From My Time in Canadian Prison
We all know that with cold weather comes drier skin. But why? This lower humidity essentially rips the moisture out of our skin through osmosis and distributes it to the air. Sore, red, flaky hands? No thank you!
Not today, low humidity! Possibly the most inconvenient thing about the snow is how much longer commutes become. Make sure to give yourself extra time to travel. Plan for delays in every mode of transportation, such as public transit, roads, and even walkways… except for bobsleds.
Who has some snow dogs? Yes, I know, snow boots are bulky and very few actually look stylish. But ladies and gents, this is not the time to worry about looking good. Although warmth and coziness are important qualities for your boots to have, even more important is that they have traction.
Obviously I try to avoid ice at every possible chance. I will even cross the street if there is too much ice on one side. So, having shoes that might help me stay upright as long as possible when faced with my archenemy is very important to me. The thicker, the better.
This is the quickest way to becoming friends with people in college…FOOD.