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On 27 August Bruce received a second warden’s recommendation for transfer to SHU. This supplemented the first by giving as reasons not only the conviction of the two charges of ‘being in a condition other than normal’ but also gambling, trafficking, enforcement (strong-arming), and threatening violence against other prisoners. It appears that the ‘threatening’ allegation was based on the information of a protective-custody prisoner who was placed on the same tier as Bruce and who stated that he was in fear of him. (It should be noted that any protective-custody prisoner who found himself on a tier with population prisoners, let alone a prisoner of Andy Bruce’s reputation, would be legitimately fearful by virtue of physical proximity to those prisoners, regardless of any overt action on their part.) Pursuant to the new divisional instruction, Bruce was given three days within which to respond to the second recommendation for transfer to SHU. In his response Bruce requested that he be given the facts and evidence upon which the new allegations were based. He pointed out that the allegations referred to his having engaged in these activities during the months of May and June, and asked why they had not therefore been included in the warden’s first recommendation of 9 August. In effect, his response was a request for further and better particulars of the allegations so that he could properly meet the case against him. His handwritten response was sent to the warden through the prison mail system on the morning of 30 August. On 31 August the National SHU Review Committee met in Ottawa and authorized Bruce’s transfer to the SHU in Millhaven. At 5:00 A.M. on 1 September Bruce was awakened and taken in handcuffs and leg-irons to a waiting plane. By evening he was back in a steel-lined cell in SHU. A deputy commissioner informed the press in an interview concerning Bruce’s transfer, ‘we didn’t want to give him an opportunity to arrange for people to interrupt the transfer by attacking the vehicle taking him to the airplane.’

On 2 September Bruce was notified in writing by the chairman of the National SHU Review Committee of the reasons for the transfer:

In your case. the warden of your institution recommended you for transfer to the SHU as you are considered to have become a serious threat to inmates ...It is not intended to supply you with the name of the inmate referred to as being in fear of you. but there is no doubt in my mind and in the minds of the committee that he did genuinely feel threatened. The discovery of cannabis resin in your cell gives me reasonable grounds for believing you to be involved in drugs. whether or not charges are brought in criminal court, and your convictions on the two charges by the independent chairperson supports my belief, in spite of whatever legal process you may wish to launch. I have noted that the 27 July charge was dismissed in warden’s court and have accordingly taken this into consideration. “- With regard to the notification that you were found gambling and that there are reasonable grounds for believing you were involved in drug trafficking, you have been given the opportunity to comment on or about that allegation in your reply to the notification. but have not done so. Also, transfers to the Special Handling Unit are not ordered by the court as a result of criminal charges but rather are part of the transfer process applied in compliance with Commissioner’s Directive’ 274 and Divisional Instruction 718... Finally, I have reasonable grounds also to believe that while in segregation and since you were counselled, your drug activities have not ceased.

As a result of Bruce’s transfer to SHU the adjourned hearing on the contraband charge was never resumed. The charge was simply withdrawn.

On the basis of such allegations and suspicions, without any hearing or process through which he could know and challenge the full case against him, Andy Bruce was again designated a ‘particularly dangerous’ prisoner and returned to the SHU to face his twelfth year of segregation.

Once a prisoner has been transferred to a special handling unit,his case is subject to a review every month by institutional authorities and every six months by the National SHU Review Committee. Prior to December 1980, the commissioner’s directives provided that the decision to transfer the prisoner out of an SHU ‘shall be based upon the inmate’s demonstrated lack of hostility and his adjudged ability to assume responsibility and to associate with staff and other inmates without posing any threat to their safety.’71 The new directive and divisional instructions have added to these criteria two further requirements:

(a) Normally, completion of two years in the first three phases.
(b) A firm conviction by the National SHU Review Committee that the inmate no longer represents a serious danger to staff or other inmates.72

The divisional instruction specifically provides that prisoners must be kept aware of their status and are to be informed of the results of the monthly institutional review in writing by the director of the institution.73 Prisoners are not to be informed of the nature of the recommendations made to the national committee; under the old divisional instruction, the director was required to notify them in writing of that committee’s decision.74 The current directive provides only that the national committee shall notify the prisoner orally of its decision.75

The six-month review by the national committee is intended to ensure that SHU admission and release decisions are not based upon the unprincipled exercise of discretion. The deputy commissioner (security) has provided this description of the national-committee review process:

The review process begins with a detailed study at National Headquarters of the Warden’s last monthly review, and relevant files and reports. In Ottawa the Committee is chaired by the Deputy Commissioner of Security and consists also the Deputy Commissioner of Offender Programmes, Deputy Director, Medical Services, and other officers at the discretion of the Chairman. When it sits in the institution, representatives of receiving regions also attend as do the Warden and Institutional and Regional officers. A representative of the Federal Correctional Investigator also attends throughout.76

Although prisoners are not permitted to attend the monthly institutional review, they are permitted and encouraged to appear before the national committee’s six-monthly hearings. ‘The Committee operates as an administrative board and conducts interviews in a similar manner to a parole hearing. The Committee is brought up to date on the performance of the inmate who is then requested to attend. He is encouraged to make any comments related to his stay in SHU and these are considered by the Committee.’77

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