Willow Cree Healing Lodge Finally Opens

Monday, April 05, 2004 at 13:46



A recently-constructed Aboriginal healing lodge is accepting its first transfer of federal inmates today.


The Willow Cree Healing Lodge is located on the Beardy’s Okemasis First Nation.


It is designed to encourage inmates to reform their lives through the help of First Nations cultural and traditional means.


The facility was expected to commence operations last fall, but couldn’t, because of a number of procedural and structural flaws.


However, James Krause of Corrections Canada says those issues have since been ironed out and everything is ready to go.


The healing lodge is staffed by a minimum of 40 personnel and is just one of a few correctional centres that uses First Nations’ spirituality and traditions as a means to reintegrate offenders back into society.


Krause says all of the inmates accepted are carefully screened first and will only be accepted if they are considered low risk.