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Quarterly detention and alternatives to detention statistics: Second quarter, fiscal year 2023 to 2024

Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA)'s statistical publication provides information on detentions.

General detentions

Table 1.1: Detentions as a percentage of entries, by length of detention and by facility
Quarter Entries by foreign nationals to Canada Total persons detained Total persons in detention (daily average) Detainees as a percentage of entries by foreign nationals to Canada (%) Total detention days Average length of detention Median length of detention Total persons detained in an immigration holding centre
(number and %)
Total persons detained in a provincial facility
(number and %)
Total persons detained in another facility
(number and %)
1 7,872,487 1,568 304 0.02% 27,086 17.3 4 1,214 (68%) 346 (20%) 216 (12%)
2 10,744,943 1,373 256 0.01% 23,013 16.8 4 1,088 (71%) 228 (15%) 218 (14%)

Source: IRCC DWS – Business Reporting CBSADHAA Datamart

Note: The numbers presented in each quarter cannot be added together to equal an annual sum. This is because the quarterly numbers reflect the number of people in detention at a given time, and could include a person who is detained over 2 quarters and carried over. Similarly, changes can take place over the time a person is detained that can lead to double-counting in the total number of people in detention by facility type. Individuals can be transferred between facility types, and could therefore be counted in both. Previous quarter totals may be slightly inflated due to late entry of release date in the system.

Table 1.2: Persons detained by length of detention
Quarter 24 hours or less 25 to 48 hours 3 to 9 days 10 to 39 days 40 to 99 days Over 99 days
1 524 146 274 331 196 121
2 431 143 218 324 181 100
Table 1.3: Persons detained sorted by province
Province First quarter Second quarter
Alberta 59 47
British Columbia 314 292
Manitoba 12 10
New Brunswick 6 5
Newfoundland and Labrador 1 0
Northwest Territories 0 0
Nova Scotia 2 3
Ontario 782 649
Prince Edward Island 1 1
Quebec 409 389
Saskatchewan 7 9
Yukon 0 0

Note: The total number of persons detained by province when added together, is greater than the total number of persons detained in that quarter as persons may be transferred between provinces during their time in detention. In this instance they are counted twice.

Table 1.4: Persons detained by grounds for detention
Grounds for detention First quarter Second quarter
Danger to the public 18 15
Examination 45 40
Identity 86 88
Security certificate 0 0
Suspected inadmissibility on grounds of human/international rights violation 2 2
Suspected inadmissibility on grounds of security 1 2
Suspected inadmissibility on grounds of serious criminality / criminality / organized criminality 35 30
Unlikely to appear / danger to the public 176 146
Unlikely to appear 1,224 1,061

Note: The total number of persons detained by ground for detention, when added together, is greater than the total number of persons detained in that quarter as the same person may be detained on multiple grounds for detention.

Grounds for detention

These grounds for detention may apply to a permanent resident or foreign national who may be inadmissible to Canada. Refer to Section 55 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).

  • Examination (If an officer considers it is necessary to get more information from an individual to complete the examination, that individual could be detained to allow the officer to do so. An examination can be as simple as a few questions, but can also include an examination of the person's personal belongings, more intensive questioning, or personal searches.)
  • Suspected of serious criminality, criminality or organized criminality
  • Suspected inadmissibility on grounds of security
  • Suspected inadmissibility on grounds of human/international rights violation
  • Identity (If an officer is unable to verify an individual's identity, that person may be detained.)
  • Danger to the public
  • Unlikely to appear (A person may be detained if an officer believes the person is unlikely to appear for examination, an admissibility hearing, removal from Canada or at a proceeding that could lead to the making of a removal order.)

Notes

A fiscal-year begins on and ends on . Quarters are broken down as follows: First quarter (Q1): to ; Second quarter (Q2) to ; Third quarter (Q3) to ; Fourth quarter (Q4) to .

Detention days are the number of cumulative days spent in detention for all detainees over the reporting period under the provisions of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act.

Median length of detention represents the middle value (or the average of two middle values) in days when the numbers are listed in numerical order from smallest to largest.

"Detention in another facility" includes other law enforcement agencies (that is, Royal Canadian Mounted Police detachments, local and provincial police cells), CBSA ports of entry and inland enforcement cells. Note that ports of entry and inland enforcement cells as well as other law enforcement agencies' cells are only used for very short periods of time.

More information

Detention, housing, or separation of minors

Definitions

Best interests of the child:
An international principle to ensure children enjoy the full and effective benefit of all their rights recognized in Canadian law and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. It is also a rule of procedure that includes an assessment of the possible impact (positive or negative) of a decision on the child or children concerned.
Minor:
A person under the age of 18.
Accompanied minor:
A foreign national or permanent resident who arrives to Canada accompanied by a responsible adult (parent, guardian).
Detained minor:
A foreign national or permanent resident who is deemed to be inadmissible and is subject to an Order for Detention under A55 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).
Housed minor:
A foreign national, permanent resident or Canadian citizen who, after the completion of a best interest of the child assessment, is kept with their detained parent/legal guardian at an immigration holding centre at the latter's request. A housed minor is not subject to an Order for Detention and is free to remain and re-enter the CBSA immigration holding centre subject to the parent/legal guardian's consent.
Unaccompanied minor:
A foreign national or permanent resident who arrives to Canada unaccompanied by a responsible adult (parent, guardian) and is not effectively taken into the care of such a person.
Separated minor:
All events where a minor is separated from an accompanying parent(s) / legal guardian(s), and are:
  • placed with a family member in the community (other than a parent or legal guardian);
  • placed under the care of a child welfare agency; or
  • placed under the care of a non-governmental organization, etc.
Table 2.1: National overview of housed minors by quarter
Quarter Total number of minors housed in a facility Accompanied minors (by parent/guardian) Average length of time in a facility (days) Median length of time in a facility (days)
1 8 8 3 3
2 1 1 2 1.5

Notes:

  • For more information on the detention or housing of minors, consult the Detention Manual (ENF 20) (PDF).
  • The total number of minors in a facility accounts for all minors (foreign nationals, permanent residents and Canadian citizens).
  • The numbers presented in each quarter cannot be added together to equal an annual sum. This is because the quarterly numbers reflect the number minor in a facility at a given time, and could include a person who is housed over 2 quarters and carried over.
Table 2.2: Housed minors by age, gender and status
Quarter Foreign national Canadian Male Female 0 to 5 years 6 to 11 years 12 to 17 years
1 8 0 7 1 4 3 1
2 1 0 0 1 0 0 1
Table 2.3: Housed minors by length of housing and facility type
Quarter Under 48 hours 3 to 9 days 10 to 39 days 40 to 90 days 91 to 180 days More than 181 days Immigration holding centre Youth centre Other
1 3 4 1 0 0 0 8 0 0
2 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

Note: Housing in other facilities includes CBSA ports of entry and inland enforcement cells, hospital, etc. Note that ports of entry and inland enforcement cells are only used for very short periods of time.

Table 2.4: Housed minors by detention grounds of parent/guardian
Region Exam Suspected of serious criminality, criminality, organized crime Unlikely to appear Identity Total
Quarter 1
Quebec 0 0 1 5 6
GTA 0 0 1 0 1
Pacific 0 0 1 0 1
Quarter 2
Quebec 0 0 1 0 1
GTA 0 0 0 0 0
Pacific 0 0 0 0 0
Table 2.5: National overview of detained minors
Quarter Total number of minors detained in a facility Accompanied minors (by parent/guardian) Unaccompanied minors Average length of time in a facility (days) Median length of time in a facility (days)
1 3 0 3 2.7 2
2 1 0 1 6 3

Notes:

  • For more information on the detention or housing of minors, consult the Detention Manual (ENF 20) (PDF).
  • The total number of minors in a facility accounts for all minors (foreign nationals, permanent residents and Canadian citizens).
Table 2.6: Detained minors by status, gender and age
Quarter Foreign national Canadian Male Female 0 to 5 years 6 to 11 years 12 to 17 years
1 3 0 2 1 0 0 3
2 1 0 0 1 0 0 1

Note: A Canadian citizen cannot be detained but in rare and exceptional circumstances may be housed with a parent/legal guardian in a facility if it is in the best interests of the child.

Table 2.7: Detained minors by length of detention and facility type
Quarter Under 48 hours 3 to 9 days 10 to 39 days 40 to 90 days 91 to 180 days More than 181 days Immigration Holding Centre (IHC) Youth centre Other
1 2 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 1
2 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

Note: Detentions in other facilities includes CBSA port of entry and inland enforcement cells, hospital, etc. Note that ports of entry and inland enforcement cells are only used for very short periods of time.

Table 2.8: Detained minors by detention grounds
Region Exam Suspected of serious criminality, criminality, organized crime Unlikely to appear Identity Total
Quarter 1
Quebec 0 0 1 0 1
GTA 0 0 1 0 1
Pacific 0 0 0 1 1
Quarter 2
Quebec 0 0 1 0 1
GTA 0 0 0 0 0
Pacific 0 0 0 0 0
Table 2.9: National overview of separated minors
Quarter Total number of separated minors Average length of time separated (days) Median length of time separated (days)
1 0 0 0
2 0 0 0
Table 2.10: Separated minors by status, gender and age
Quarter Foreign national Canadian Male Female 0 to 5 years 6 to 11 years 12 to 17 years
1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

Alternative to Detention

Definitions

Community supervision

A program that allows individuals to live in the community and be supported by family, or by a third party service provider that specializes in community service. Community supervision consists of three programs:

  1. Release on a deposit or guarantee to a bondsperson.
  2. Release on reporting conditions.
  3. Release on a Community Case Management & Supervision program.
Deposit:
the person is only released from detention once funds are deposited.
Guarantee:
the bondsperson will need to pay the money that is promised if the person in detention does not respect the conditions of their release.
Conditions:
the CBSA and/or the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada will put in place conditions when a person is released, based on their risk level. See section 4.1 of Enforcement Manual 34: Alternatives to Detention for more information.
Community case management and supervision:
for people who need support and a bondsperson to lower their level of risk when released into the community. The CBSA has contracts with the John Howard Society of Canada, the Toronto Bail Program and the Salvation Army.

Electronic supervision

Electronic supervision provides more options for a person to communicate with the CBSA. It also allows the CBSA to better identify and investigate those who fail to comply.

Voice reporting:
uses biometric voiceprint technology to monitor and confirm that people are following their reporting conditions. Unlike in-person reporting, voice reporting allows people to use cell phones or landlines to report.
Electronic monitoring:

a limited number of people are chosen based on the level of risk they present and are monitored through a GPS and/or Radio Frequency system. The CBSA has partnered with Correctional Service Canada to deliver this technology. Electronic monitoring is meant to be used with community supervision.

* This option is currently in a pilot phase and is only available in the Greater Toronto, Quebec, and Prairie regions.

Active alternative to detention participants

Active alternative to detention participants are the number of people who are on an active alternative to detention program at some point during the selected period. This number of active participants can include:

  • A person whose alternative to detention program began before the selected period and/or ended during (or after) the reporting period.
  • A person enrolled before the official launch of the expanded alternative to detention program on , but who remains an active participant to the program during the selected period.
  • A person who avoided detention and was placed in an alternative to detention program.

Counting the number of participants

The number of active alternative to detention participants at a specific time is not the same as the number of new enrollments. A person can be active in more than one alternative to detention program. This can create times where the person is counted once for each program they were active in. For this reason, it is not possible to add up the number of participants for each program to get the total number of individuals on an alternative to detention program.

A person will be added to the alternative to detention totals in every quarter where they are enrolled in an alternative to detention program. For this reason, the quarters cannot be added together for the total number of active alternative to detention participants in the year to date.

Table 3.1: Total active alternative to detention participants during the selected period
Quarter Community case management and supervision (with mandatory residency) Electronic monitoring Community case management and supervision (excludes mandatory residency) Voice reporting In-person reporting Total active alternative to detention participants
1 27 34 349 1,467 11,460 12,725
2 31 38 344 1,340 11,729 12,841
Table 3.2: Overview of persons released from detention on an alternative to detention condition
Quarter Persons detained Persons released on an alternative to detention Persons released on an alternatives to detention as a percentage of all persons detained (%) Average number of days in detention prior to release Number of persons released from an immigration holding center Number of persons released from a provincial facility Number of persons released from another facility
1 1,568 476 30 29 334 106 36
2 1,373 474 35 28 360 82 34

Notes:

  • Persons may be detained for more than one quarter or they may have been arrested more than once. The percentage of persons released on an alternative to detention is calculated by dividing the number of persons released at that time by the number of person detained at that same time.
  • The number of persons released on an alternative to detention includes Community case management and supervision (with mandatory residency), electronic monitoring, community case management and supervision (excludes mandatory residency), voice reporting, in-person reporting, deposit, guarantee, and other immigration conditions.
  • Another facility includes other law enforcement agencies like the RCMP and provincial police cells. The CBSA ports of entry cells, the CBSA inland enforcement cells, and the other law enforcement agencies’ cells are only used for short periods of time.
Table 3.3: Number of persons released from detention on an alternative to detention sorted by province
Province First quarter Percentage of persons released on an alternative to detention as a percentage of all persons detained (%) Second quarter Percentage of persons released on an alternative to detention as a percentage of all persons detained (%)
Alberta 30 51 19 40
British Columbia 60 19 75 26
Manitoba 5 42 5 50
New Brunswick 1 17 1 20
Newfoundland and Labrador 1 100 0 0
Northwest Territories 0 0 0 0
Nova Scotia 1 50 3 100
Ontario 281 36 249 38
Prince Edward Island 0 0 0 0
Quebec 113 28 120 31
Saskatchewan 1 14 7 78
Yukon 0 0 0 0

Notes:

  • Does not include persons who were enrolled directly in an alternative to detention program without detention.
  • Zero percent means that there were detainees during this period, but no releases on an alternative to detention. If no percentage is provided, this means there were no detainees during this period.
Table 3.4: Number of persons released from detention by alternative to detention and by level of intervention
Quarter Community case management and supervision (with mandatory residency) Electronic monitoring Community case management and supervision (excludes mandatory residency) Voice reporting In-person reporting Deposit or guarantee Other immigration condition
1 8 5 37 7 354 10 55
2 10 6 37 11 349 5 56

Notes:

  • The alternative to detention programs are listed from left to right from requiring the most intervention to the least intervention.
  • People can be released on many alternative to detention programs but have only been counted once in this table according to the alternative to detention program that they’re enrolled in that requires the most intervention. For example, if a person is enrolled in community case management and supervision and voice reporting, they will only appear under the community case management and supervision option.
Table 3.5: Number of new enrollments on alternative to detention by program type
Quarter Community case management and supervision (with mandatory residency) Electronic monitoring Community case management and supervision (excludes mandatory residency) Voice reporting In-person reporting Total
1 9 5 44 79 1,574 1,711
2 10 8 35 68 1,355 1,476

Note: The Electronic monitoring program is available in all regions except Southern Ontario.

Table 3.6: Rate of non-compliance by alternative to detention and overall
Quarter Community case management and supervision (with mandatory residency) (%) Electronic monitoring (%) Community case management and supervision (excludes mandatory residency) (%) Voice reporting (%) In-person reporting (%)
1 18.5 6 10.5 1.5 3
2 23 10.5 10 2 2.5

Notes:

  • The rate of non-compliance is calculated by dividing the number of warrants issued and the number of arrests without warrant executed by the number of active alternative to detention participants during the selected period.
  • Non-compliance does not include all possible violations. This graph only shows the more extreme cases where an active alternative to detention participant fails to comply with one or more of their conditions.
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