“Canadian penitentiaries are becoming the largest psychiatric facilities in the country.”

– Howard Sapers, Correctional Investigator of Canada
For the full article, click here.

One of Catherine Currie’s areas of specialization is defending individuals living with mental illness, intellectual disability and developmental delay. Unfortunately, these individuals often find themselves facing criminal charges largely due to mental health issues, however proper treatment can be found within the mental health, rather than criminal justice system. Catherine is knowledgeable about mental wellness and illness, and familiar with the civil and criminal law relevant to mental health patients.


Mental Health Diversion is a program through which individuals living with mental illness who are charged with relatively minor offences are “diverted” from the criminal justice system into the mental health system. This way, alternatives to incarceration are made available, and access to treatment and a variety of community supports are secured. Catherine is dedicated to helping get these clients obtain approval for a diversion from the criminal justice system whenever possible and appropriate.


Catherine is an advocate for the presumption of innocence for ALL individuals who are facing criminal charges, and when issues of mental wellness or development arise, this presumption can be compromised. She has had a high level of success in getting charges stayed or withdrawn, especially when the accused is an individual living with mental illness.


Catherine has appeared regularly at the Ontario Review Board for individuals who are found not criminally responsible for their offences due to mental illness . She is determined to see that individuals who were suffering from mental health issues at the time of their offence find themselves involved with the mental health system, rather than in jail.