Canadian Roundtable on Alternatives to Detention

On 24 October, 2013, the UNHCR office in Canada organized a Roundtable on alternatives to detention held in Vancouver, British Columbia with the participation and support of IDC Director Grant Mitchell and Canadian IDC Members.

Among the topics discussed were a number of positive practice models and key international developments, including a focus on the high compliance rates associated with a holistic case management approach to ATD, including the provision of legal advice and living assistance.

IDC Director Mitchell reported that there is currently no substantial evidence that traditional supervision and reporting enforcement ATD models have higher compliance outcomes than holistic case management, and encouraged the Canadian government to view the IDC’s research on ATD, There are Alternatives when seeking current migration management reforms.

Meanwhile, a number of IDC members and Canadian NGOs, including IDC Advisory Committee member Janet Dench, are undertaking national strategic planning around ATD in the hopes of engaging the Canadian government on practical, rights-based ATD implementation.