Canada in Brief, Oct. 18-24

October 18, 2018 Updated: October 18, 2018

Feds table bill to transform prisoner segregation

The Trudeau government tabled legislation on Oct. 16 to transform the way it separates inmates in federal correctional institutions from the general prison population.

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said the bill is the result of recent court decisions on administrative segregation as well as recommendations from a coroners inquest into the 2007 death of teenager Ashley Smith, who died by self-strangulation after spending more than 1,000 days in segregation.

Administrative and disciplinary segregation—which involve separating an inmate from others for safety or security reasons—will be eliminated.

Instead, new “structured intervention units” will be created to allow offenders to be removed from the general inmate population while maintaining their access to rehabilitative programming, interventions, and mental-health care, among other changes.

Half of homeowners polled say pot use will hurt property values

More than half of Canadian homeowners say they would be less likely to consider a property if they knew cannabis had been grown inside, according to a poll released Oct. 16.

Real estate listings company Zoocasa, which commissioned the study, found that 52 percent of homeowners would think twice about buying a home that had been used to grow even a legal amount of marijuana.

The Cannabis Act, which came into effect on Oct. 17, permits the consumption and purchase of the drug and allows Canadians to grow up to four plants for personal use inside their homes.

But Zoocasa said those involved in the survey generally expressed negative sentiments toward consuming, cultivating, and living in close proximity to cannabis use.

Fifty-seven percent of those polled believe even growing the legal amount would devalue property values.

Meanwhile, only 15 percent of all respondents indicated they would consider growing cannabis in their homes. The survey also found that nearly half of respondents dont want to live near a cannabis dispensary either.

Feds on verge of selecting design for $60B warships

Canadas most expensive military project is about to enter a new phase, as the government is on the verge of picking its preferred design for the countrys $60 billion fleet of new warships.

Defence insiders say the government wants to decide on the favoured design by the end of the month from among options submitted by three companies vying for the lucrative work.

After that, the government will sit down with the winning bidder to hammer out the final cost and other details.

Halifax-based Irving Shipbuilding, which the government has already picked to actually build 15 warships over the next two decades, will be involved in those talks.

With files from The Canadian Press