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Restorative Justice Program

In ancient times, justice took place when an offender publicly stood waiting to hear what the victim had decided restitution should be. We have moved away from a victim-centered system and shifted our focdus entirely to the offender, setting up a legal system which doles out punishment, leaving out the victim's needs in the process.

Restorative Justice gives the victim a voice and provides a safe structure for the offender to make amends in a personal and meaningful way. Our hope is to help victims move into the future with some sense of satisfation and restoration of the harms done against them.

Victim Offender Mediation (VOM)

  • Victim Offender Mediation is a process which provides interested victims the opportunity to meet with the offender in a safe, structured setting with the assistance of a trained mediator.
  • Most victims tell us that their number one need is for more information. They need answers. This setting gives the victim the opportunity to ask questions, to share how this crime has impacted them and to be heard by the offender.
  • Offenders are screened for "appropriateness" for meeting with a victim. They must be willing to take responsibility for their actions and behavior and be willing to listen and make amends for the crime they committed.
  • The program is, of course, totally voluntary for victims and there is never pressure for a victim to participate in victim offender mediation.
  • Parents of offenders and the offenders themselves can rest assured that this is a respectful setting for all parties involved and ground rules will be established for everyone in the room.
  • This setting gives the offender the oppotunity to share their story and take meaningful responsibility for the harms they have caused. This is a valuable step to being welcomed back into the community.

Victim Panel

When mediation is inappropriate, PDRC will give the offender an opportunity to meet with a panel of up to three trained community members. The panel will be representing both the victim and the community. The purpose is for offenders to express their understanding of the crime committed and the harm done and to also take responsibility for it. The panel will actively listen and will ask questions to help the offender be more aware of the impact of their decisions in an effort to welcome them back into the community.

Victim Panel are set by appointment.

 

ABC's of Restorative Justice Class

This is a two hour interactive class for offenders. The goal for class participants is to gain an appreciation and understanding of the Juvenile Court System, Beneficial information about learning styles and thinking errors, and an awareness of the consequences of their behavior to themselves and others. Contact Karen Brown at 800.452.8024 or karen @pdrc.org for more information and sign-up for the class.

The next Restorative Justice Class: February 21, from 4:00pm to 6:30pm

Volunteer today!

Please contact our Victim Offender Mediation Coordinator Karen L. Brown for more information on volunteer opportunities! karen@pdrc.org