5 Things to know about Long-Term Supervision Orders
- Kate Mitchell
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In certain circumstances, individuals who are convicted of a criminal offence (or offences) can be subjected to a Long-Term Supervision Order (“LTSO”). An LTSO can be made if an individual has committed an offence and it would be appropriate to impose a custodial sentence of 2+ years. There must also be a substantial risk that the individual will reoffend, but a reasonable possibility of eventual control of the risk. The criteria is set out in section 753.1 of the Criminal Code.
LTSOs can be made for a period of up to 10 years. During this time, the individual is under supervision in the community. Here are a few things to know about LTSOs:
- Individuals with LTSOs are supervised in accordance with the Corrections and Conditional Release Act. The Parole Board of Canada and Correctional Service Canada both play roles in supervising those on LTSOs.
- Prisoners with LTSOs are eligible for conditional release. They can apply for temporary absences and parole, and they may be released on statutory release if no detention order is sought.
- The Board can impose conditions on those serving LTSOs after warrant expiry, including a residency condition. Some conditions are required for all individuals on LTSOs (e.g. report as required, remain in Canada, etc.). Other conditions are optional, such as residency conditions. Optional conditions are only to be imposed if they are deemed reasonable and necessary to protect society and facilitate the successful reintegration of the individual. There is a process that allows those on LTSOs to request relief from certain conditions.
- There can be severe consequences for breaching any conditions put on an LTSO. Those who fail or refuse to comply with long-term supervision, without lawful excuse, can be charged with a criminal offence that carries a sentence of up to 10 years’ imprisonment.
- Individuals on LTSOs can be suspended and apprehended. A suspension can occur if the individual breaches a condition or local instruction, or if necessary and reasonable to prevent a breach or protect society. The individual can be committed to a community-based residential facility, mental health facility, or even a jail or prison until the suspension is cancelled, new conditions are established, or the individual is charged under 753.3 of the Criminal Code. The period of commitment is limited to 90 days. The Board must review the case and either cancel the suspension or recommend an information be laid to charge the individual under section 753.3.