What is an Assessment Unit?

NOTE:  This is a personal blog.  Any views or opinions represented in this blog belong solely to the FedPhoneLine staff.  WE ARE NOT Psychologists or Therapy Professionals, all data and information on these blogs is for informational purposes ONLY.

When an individual is convicted and receives a Federal sentence he/she will first travel from a Provincial Correctional Centre to a Federal Prison Assessment Unit (each Province with a Federal Prison has its own Assessment Unit).

What is an Assessment Unit?

At the Assessment Unit, the inmate is assigned a Parole Officer.  A full appraisal (or assessment) of the individual is conducted.  Including criminal history, mental state, psychological history, psychiatric issues, educational background and work history.

At the Assessment Unit, the privileges to inmates are limited.  For example, usually no open visits or Private Family Visits (PFV) allowed.  Inmates are allowed a TV and Fan to be sent to them).

When assessment is complete (usually between 90-120 days), the Parole Officer and the Case Management Team completes a “Custody Rating Scale”.  This scale outlines the inmates Correctional Plan (see our Correctional Plan blog for more details).

The Parole Officer also writes up an Assessment for Decision of the Inmate Security Classification.  This write up will determine the Security level for the inmate and which Federal Institution he/she will be assigned (known as their ‘Mother Institution’).

What is a Mother Institution?

An inmate’s ‘Mother Institution’ is the Federal Institution an inmate is sent after Assessment.  This is usually the place where he/she will spend most of their sentence.

Once the inmate arrives at their mother institution, they will be assigned a new Parole Officer and can start their Correctional Plan.

The inmate will have 30 days from the day they arrive to receive clothing and other personal items.  Click here and scroll down to see a list of personal items that can be sent to inmates (what you can send depends on the security rating of the institution).

Open visits are permitted in most institutions.  Inmates must wait for at least 6 months before they can apply for PFV.

Please Note:  If you have a FedPhoneLine number and your loved one transfers to a different institution in a different city, you will need a new FedPhoneLine number.  Switching numbers is easy, click here to watch a tutorial video about Changing FedPhoneLine Numbers