Thunder Bay

Adam Capay 'treated like an animal', says Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day

Ontario's Regional Chief says his visit with Adam Capay at the Thunder Bay District Jail last week showed him just how broken the province's correctional system is.

Capay an example of Ontario's 'broken and unbalanced' correctional system, Day says

Ontario Regional Chief Isadore Day visited with Adam Capay at the Thunder Bay District Jail last week. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)

Ontario's Regional Chief says his visit with Adam Capay at the Thunder Bay District Jail last week showed him just how broken the province's correctional system is.

Capay is the 24-year-old from Lac Seul First Nation whose four years in solitary confinement have recently sparked a public outcry.

"Clearly the situation Adam is dealing with...being treated like an animal, is going to have an impact on him physically and psychologically," Day said after visiting with Capay last Thursday.

Day said approximately 80 per cent of people held at the Thunder Bay District Jail are Indigenous people and said he wanted to visit with Capay because he represents so many others.

"It's a very broken and unbalanced system," he said.

He agrees with many critics who say the Thunder Bay District Jail needs to be replaced, but adds that First Nations need input in any new facility.

A new institution should employ more Indigenous staff, find "real ways to rehabilitate offenders" and include a connection to the land, Day said.

During his visit with Capay, the regional chief was able to conduct a traditional Anishinaabe ceremony but "it was in a cage on a slab of concrete," he said. "There's certainly something wrong with that."

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