Public safety and the use of advanced technology are top of mind as BC Corrections selects Buddi Ltd. as the successful proponent for a new electronic supervision program, subject to contract negotiations and finalization.
Following a review of North American best practices, a number of advancements are planned to B.C.’s current system as part of a new contract, including:
- GPS capabilities, allowing for no-go zones
- Collection of client location information
- Vibration alerts directly to the client
- Increased mapping and reporting capabilities
With these expansions, BC Corrections will be able to program ankle bracelets worn by offenders to monitor compliance with court-ordered area restrictions. The hybrid radio frequency and GPS system will be used by BC Corrections staff to supervise offenders in the community – with all data stored in Canada. An alarm will sound at the central monitoring unit if the offender goes into a restricted area.
These are progressive measures that build on the other tools that BC Corrections and police use to monitor clients, such as home visits, curfew checks, assessments and programming.
In the coming months, BC Corrections will be finalizing the contract with the proponent, testing the equipment and training staff to support the transition to the new provider. In the interim, the existing contractor will continue providing electronic supervision services during the transition period – with full-implementation of the new program expected by Nov. 1, 2015.
Buddi Ltd. provides supervision equipment throughout the world, including in Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.
Placing someone on electronic supervision:
- In B.C., offenders are placed on electronic supervision by order of a provincial or Supreme Court judge. BC Corrections does not have the ability to require an offender be placed on electronic supervision on its own.
- Once a judge is considering electronic supervision, a BC Corrections staff member assesses the suitability for the client to participate in the program.
- An electronic device is attached to suitable clients and monitored by the BC Corrections central monitoring unit.
- BC Corrections is dedicated to adhering to high standards in research, program development and evaluation, and technology – and this new system reflect these goals.
- BC Corrections has used electronic supervision since 1987.
- Currently, the most common use for electronic supervision in B.C. is to monitor house arrest and curfew orders through the use of radio frequency for people living in the community who have court-ordered conditions.
- That said, electronic supervision isn’t foolproof – it cannot stop someone who is intent on committing a crime.
To access British Columbia Justice and Public Safety Sector: Technical Assessment of Electronic Supervision – a report written to help inform the Request for Proposals – please visit: http://www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/corrections/docs/BCCorrections_Technical_Assessment_of_Electronic_Supervision.pdf