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Saturday 30th of May 2020

Documentation Center

Learning from Nelson Mandela: A report on the use of solitary confinement and pepper spray in Manitoba Youth Custody Facilities

Manitoba Advocate for Children and Youth


Two years ago, after receiving a number of complaints about the uses of segregation, solitary confinement, and pepper spray in youth custody facilities in Manitoba, the independent offices of the Ombudsman and the Advocate determined there was a need for an independent investigation.

The Ombudsman’s focus, as he explained a few moments ago, was to examine existing legislation, regulations, policies, and procedures, and to determine whether they were being appropriately followed by custodial staff and administrators. The focus of my office was to look at whether the use of pepper spray and segregation in youth populations is justified and whether the justice system is reflecting the best interests of youth while they are responsible for their care. In addition, my team analyzed the data against the backdrop of human rights and specifically the protected rights of children.

This report presents clear evidence that methods such as segregation and pepper spray do not make the public safer. It is indisputable that therapeutic approaches work, can lower re-offending, and increase public safety.


North America - Canada

Year Language

2019 English

Category Type

Grey Literature Report


Detention, Justice, Juvenile



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  • International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO). Belgian Public Utility Foundation

    All rights reserved

  • Head Office: Rue Armand Campenhout, nº 72 bte 10. 1050. Brussels. Belgium

    Phone: 00 32 262 988 90. Fax: 00 32 262 988 99. oijj@oijj.org

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