State of the Criminal Justice System Methodology Report

State of the Criminal Justice System Framework

Based on the extensive research and feedback from multi-phased consultations with CJS partners, stakeholders, experts and other Canadians, JUS developed the first performance monitoring framework for the Canadian CJS.

Selection of the final outcomes and indicators was done by JUS with the assistance of a performance measurement SME based on careful consideration of all the information gathered from the literature review and consultation activities described above. Ultimately, the decisions to exclude/include indicators were based on an assessment of: data availability; comprehensiveness of the indicator/outcome; practical considerations; maintaining a manageable project; and ensuring an accessible and an easy-to-understand framework. The final outcomes and indicators are as follows.

Canadians are safe and individuals and families feel safe
  • Police-reported crime
  • Crime severity
  • Self-reported victimization
  • Satisfication with personal safety from crime
The criminal justice system is fair and accessible
  • Public perception that the criminal justice system is fair to all people
  • Public perception that the criminal justice system is accessible to all people
  • Approved criminal legal aid applications
  • Clients served by the Indigenous Courtwork Program
  • Pre-trial detention/remand
  • Office of the Correctional Investigator complainants
Canadians understand the role of and express confidence in the criminal justice system
  • Public awareness of the role of the criminal justice system
  • Public confidence in the police
  • Public confidence in the Canadian criminal courts
  • Victimization incidents reported to the police
The criminal justice system operates efficiently
  • Offence clearance rate
  • Case completion time
  • Administration of justice offences
The criminal justice system promotes and supports diversion, restorative justice, Indigenous justice, and tools for community-based resolution
  • Incarceration rate
  • Criminal incidents cleared by referral to a diversionary program
  • Drug treatment court program referrals
The criminal justice system provides persons in the correctional system with services and supports to rehabilitate them and integrate them back into the community
  • Intensive Rehabilitative Custody and Supervision youth cases receiving specialized treatment
  • Mental health services in federal corrections
  • Correctional programs in federal corrections
  • Educational programs in federal corrections
  • Individuals under federal correctional supervision granted parole
  • Successful completion of statutory release without revocation in federal corrections
  • Individuals under federal correctional supervision who secure employment before their sentence ends
  • Community release plan for Indigenous individuals in federal custody
The criminal justice system respects victims’ and survivors’ rights and addresses their needs
  • Victim satisfaction with the actions taken by police
  • Individuals registered as a victim to receive information about an individual who harmed them
The criminal justice system reduces the number of Indigenous individuals in the system
  • Self-reported violent victimization among Indigenous individuals
  • Police-reported homicide victims identified as Indigenous
  • Police-reported homicide accused identified as Indigenous
  • Indigenous adults and youth admissions to provincial/territorial correctional services
  • Indigenous admissions to federal correctional services
  • Indigenous individuals among the total federal offender population
  • Indigenous individuals designated as Dangerous Offenders
The criminal justice system reduces the number of marginalized and vulnerable people in the system
  • Self-reported violent victimization among marginalized and vulnerable populations
  • Police contact among individuals with a mental or substance use disorder
  • Mental health needs in federal corrections
  • Visible minorities in federal corrections

The full Framework is available in Annex A. It includes a detailed description of each outcome as well as the following components for each indicator:

It is important to note that the Framework provides a national picture of Canada’s CJS rather than a provincial and territorial breakdown. Therefore, the data presented by the Framework do not take into consideration the jurisdictions’ unique contexts and realities. Additionally, for some indicators, data for certain provinces and territories are not available and are therefore not included in the national estimate.

It is also important to note that the current Framework is not exhaustive of all relevant indicators that could be used to monitor the performance of the CJS. As new data are collected, statistical standards are developed and consultations with experts continue, it is expected that new indicators will be added to the Framework. JUS will continue to work with partners to further refine the Framework and fill the data gaps it has identified.Footnote 12