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Re-claiming Justice and Community: The Community Council Project of Toronto

Proulx, Craig
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) Ph.D. dissertation, McMaster University, Canada

Aboriginal peoples, particularly urban Aboriginal peoples, are discriminated against and over-represented throughout the Canadian Criminal justice system. I review specific colonial and postcolonial actions that lead to Aboriginal over-representation and explore how the diversion program of the Community Council Project (CCP) provides justice for the Aboriginal peoples of Toronto. This research aims to investigate the under-researched intersection between alternative justice practice, individual and community healing, and identity in an urban Aboriginal community. The CCP appropriates a non-Aboriginal diversion format and combines it with culture-specific Aboriginal restorative justice traditions, and pan-Aboriginal discourse, to assist clients in the process of healing. This research illustrates how community based justice restores and/or transforms the identity of Aboriginal clients. I indicate how individuals are healed, and how they are reintegrated into the Aboriginal community of Toronto. Subsequently, I discuss how healthy individual and community identities can be fostered through CCP justice philosophy and practice. Finally, I delineate the role of the CCP in how Aboriginal “communityâ€? is conceived of and practiced in Toronto. Author’s abstract.


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