Elizabeth Parkinson Receives the
2014 Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award

For Immediate Release

OTTAWA, November 13, 2014 – Today, Mr. Howard Sapers, Correctional Investigator of Canada, is pleased to announce that Ms. Elizabeth Parkinson, long-time legal advocate with the Prisoners' Legal Services of British Columbia, has been presented with the 2014 Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award.

Mr. Sapers acknowledged Ms. Parkinson's long and distinguished career in support of social justice, human rights and due process in corrections.  "For the better part of 35 years, Beth Parkinson has relentlessly advocated for and defended human rights in prisons in British Columbia with impacts that reach across Canada," said Sapers.  "Her ability to develop positive relationships with correctional administrators and to work with even the most difficult of clients is truly remarkable." 

Ms. Parkinson's work is associated with some of the leading cases in Canadian prison law and she is recognized as one of the country's foremost experts in sentence calculation. Ms. Parkinson has developed learning materials and courses for prisoners and has taught inmates how to use legal principles to effectively resolve issues behind bars.  In an extraordinary career guided by conviction and compassion, Ms. Parkinson has won accolades from her colleagues, the legal community, correctional administrators and inmates alike.

The Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award was established in honour of Mr. Ed McIsaac, who served as Executive Director of the Office of the Correctional Investigator for 18 years.  Each recipient of the award receives a reproduction of a sculpture by Ms. Audrey Greyeyes, a Cree artist from Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, entitled Medicine Man. It symbolizes wisdom, clarity of thought, and leadership, traits reflecting Mr. McIsaac's character and career.

The award will be presented during a ceremony this evening in Surrey, British Columbia.  It is the sixth time that the Ed McIsaac Award has been presented since it was first established in December 2008.

Details on nomination procedures for the Ed McIsaac Human Rights in Corrections Award are available on the Office's website at www.oci-bec.gc.ca .

For more information contact:
Ivan Zinger, J.D. Ph.D.
Executive Director and General Counsel
Office of the Correctional Investigator
Tel: (613) 990-2690
Ivan.Zinger@oci-bec.gc.ca

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