Source: (2007) Cleveland State Law Review. 55(3): 269-287.

"The attacks of the early 1970s on the "lawlessness" of indeterminate sentencing, primarily because of the role played by judges' personal views and the resulting extreme disparity of outcomes, and on the failures of rehabilitative sanctions to achieve their goals, eroded confidence in the legitimacy of established practices. ... A decline in Canada's total incarceration rate suggests that the reforms may have gone some way toward achieving the objectives of less reliance on the prison, but further analysis shows significant and troubling variations among different populations, with Aboriginal women being imprisoned disproportionately and at higher rates than in the past. ... It enabled diversion of adult defendants, modified the procedures governing the use of the fine to reduce the risk of imprisonment for default, and created a new sanction--the conditional sentence--which suspends execution of a prison term of less than two years. ... More generally, it articulated the twin purposes of the section as establishing a general norm that imprisonment "should be the penal sanction of last resort," reducing over-incarceration of Aboriginal persons. ... When faced with an Aboriginal woman who embodies what are perceived to be significant criminogenic risk/needs, the sentencing judge is asked to justify a non-carceral sanction in terms of those same aspects of the defendant's context that point to incarceration as necessary to contain and manage her risk of re-offending." (Excerpt).