Kenora's police services board is looking for ways to respond to concerns in the community, as inmates from the district jail are being released into the community, during the coronavirus outbreak. 

"It has been known that these people are being released to victim houses, across the street from victim houses, and the entire decision around this release from custody is causing significant problems and concerns in our community," it says in the meeting agenda.

"We have to manage people in the community, and we have concerns about the people they have released," the agenda note continued.

At this point, duty counsel at the court house work with a justice of the peace on a decision to release those in custody. Police board members have reached out to their counterparts in Thunder Bay, in an effort to mitigate risks to the public. Kenora police board members are told a risk table is convened by their counterparts in Thunder Bay, in order to deal with the potential release of inmates in Thunder Bay, so that partners can assess the risks to victims and the public related to the potential release of a person in custody.

Risk tables are already being used in Kenora. According to the local Canadian Mental Health Association branch, the purpose of the risk table is to bring together diverse service providers to identify situations of acutely elevated risk and prevent negative outcomes from occurring.

When a risk table is called -- the web page continues -- service providers rapidly respond and offer wrap-around services to individuals with diverse needs, who find themselves at risk of criminalization, victimization or harm.  

The province released about 2,000 inmates in April, as the coronavirus outbreak threatened to spread into the inmate population. Earlier this month, two cases were found at the district jail. 

For more information:

Kenora Police Services Board - Agenda for June 25 meeting

CMHA - Risk table

Situation table saving lives