|Canadian Prison Marketing Program Closed|
|By CBC News|
The federal government has shut down a telemarketing program using prisoners to sell vacation packages.
The Canadian Survey Research Council (CSRC) demanded the government halt the program out of fears prisoners were gaining access to people's personal information.
Three prisons were participating in the job training program - a medium-security institution in Dorchester, New Brunswick, and two prisons in Ontario. Corrections Canada created the program to prepare prisoners for life in the outside world.
The council fears the program is training potential telemarketing scam artists and giving inmates private information about potential victims.
'No one would consider training convicted pedophiles in the art of daycare management, so why would anyone think it is a good idea to teach prisoners how to obtain information from Canadians about their lives?' said Peter Greensmith of the CSRC when it lobbied the government to stop the program.
At the time, former Solicitor General Lawrence Macaulay said the prisoners were carefully screened and would not have access to personal information.
Conservative MP Bill Casey says that problem surfaced. Casey says prisoners wound up with people's names, phone numbers, credit card numbers, and possibly when their homes were going to be empty.
Newly-appointed Solicitor-General Wayne Easter says an investigation has been launched.
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