We call upon Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale and the Government of Canada to:
Consider our proposal that Canada’s prison farms should evolve toward an ethical and ecologically sustainable model that will contribute to public safety and food security by:
i) Protecting farm and food system infrastructure, including valuable farm land, and ensuring that this land produces food that prioritizes ecological sustainability, human health, food security, and fiscal responsibility;
ii) Providing work and learning opportunities for prisoners that provide education, life skills, and job skills relevant for reintegration into a society that is increasingly concerned with issues of climate change, public health and animal welfare, and where job opportunities continue to grow in sectors such as organic plant production, food services, and animal care;
iii) Providing a coherent model of rehabilitation and therapeutic activity for prisoners that is centred in responsible, responsive, and nurturing relationships with humans, animals, plants, and the environment;
iv) Feeding prisoners with nutritious food grown, processed, and prepared by their fellow prisoners;
v) Enhancing community partnerships with ecologically responsible farmers, food banks, wildlife and ethology experts, public health providers, and local food stakeholders.
Submitted by the Evolve Our Prison Farms coalition based in Kingston, Ontario.