Evidence of meeting #40 for Public Safety and National Security in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was gps.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

4 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

That's really interesting, but I'm trying to understand, if their behaviour's abnormal, how it can have predictive powers? You're trying to predict when the offender will go outside the circumscribed area of where he's allowed to be. Is that what you're trying to predict?

4 p.m.

Vice-President, Track and Trace Solutions, 3M Company

Steve Chapin

Remember that this is exception-based reporting. Rules are set up that an offender must follow, but that also gives an offender a good deal of latitude to stay within the rules that have been established but do wrong, if you will. If we know an offender is scheduled to be at home and at work and at treatment, and the offender is following that pattern every day right on time, no alerts are set. But if on the way to treatment, for example, we start seeing deviations and perhaps the officer's not looking for those deviations because he's only looking for the violations, we'll look at those and see if they're significant and repeatable and alert the officer to a potential violation or potential problem.

We're trying to save the officer time, and we're also trying to prevent the officer from missing something that would be potentially significant. I'll give you an example. We had an offender several years ago who was 100% compliant, except on his way home from work every day, he was taking a shortcut through a neighbourhood and going around and around the block and then going on. We didn't have the predictive technology then, but we used this case as an example. Our technology will pick up that he's repeatedly going off the prescribed route, and that's an area that requires some special consideration, if you will, by the officer.

4 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

In terms of losing track, it's essentially in areas like urban canyons, as you said. That's what you meant by losing track.

Apparently, the technology doesn't work as well with young offenders. Have you found that?

4 p.m.

Vice-President, Track and Trace Solutions, 3M Company

Steve Chapin

I've not found that to be true.

4 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

That's what I thought we heard.

4 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Kevin Sorenson

The technology or the rehabilitation or—

4 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

In terms of reducing failure to comply or that there was a sense, I recall, that maybe younger offenders were more rebellious of the technology. Did we not hear something like that?

4:05 p.m.

Conservative

Candice Bergen Portage—Lisgar, MB

We heard testimony from the John Howard Society of Manitoba about a pilot project with young offenders who stole cars, but the problem in Manitoba was that there were no repercussions. If they took off the device, there was no penalty or punishment.

4:05 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Anyone who would not have a penalty for taking it off might take it off. That clears that up, thank you.

How many companies are there in your market? I can't imagine a lot of competing companies. It's government driven, and probably two or three big companies are operating in this market in the United States and you're one of them, of course.

4:05 p.m.

Vice-President, Track and Trace Solutions, 3M Company

Steve Chapin

We are one of them. We are the largest in the market worldwide. When I count, there are 10 companies around the world that offer a credible GPS tracking device, and roughly the same number of companies also offer an RF device. But every year some companies say they have a cellphone and they can track offenders, and they want a piece of this government market.

In the United States, there are three, maybe four, credible manufacturers of the equipment.

4:05 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Do you have dealings at the moment with either the Canadian federal government or provincial governments across Canada? Do you have contracts? You may have mentioned them, yes or no, but I didn't catch that. Do you have contracts with the government? Are you seeking contracts with the government?

4:05 p.m.

Vice-President, Track and Trace Solutions, 3M Company

Steve Chapin

Currently we have no contracts for electronic monitoring with the Canadian government, although we would certainly love to be working in partnership with the Canadian government.

4:05 p.m.

Liberal

Francis Scarpaleggia Lac-Saint-Louis, QC

Thank you. I'm done.

4:05 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Kevin Sorenson

All right.

We'll now move to Mr. Rafferty, please, for five minutes.

May 15th, 2012 / 4:05 p.m.

NDP

John Rafferty Thunder Bay—Rainy River, ON

Thank you very much, Chair.

Thank you both for being here.

Mr. Chapin, I'm trying to get an idea of the number of alerts that go out. Would you have any idea, just off the top of your head? If you take one set, a state or a city, or someone who's using this device, would it be possible for you to tell us how many bracelets are out and how many alerts, as a percentage, on a daily basis, would go out on that number of bracelets?