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Re-visioning the restorative justice movement: Getting to the soul of justice.

Eagle, Harley
June 4, 2015

Source: (2011) Revisioning Justice. Restorative Justice Week 2011. Correctional Services Canada.

Several years ago, when I first began working
as a restorative justice (RJ) facilitator in a First
Nations community, I found myself needing to
do some real “soul searching”. As a First Nations
person myself, knowing well the results of the
legacy of colonization, forced assimilation,
forced removal from traditional lands and life
ways, and seeing that I was being asked to facilitate a restorative process in this community, the
question for me was, “Restore people to what?”.
Because of the decades of systemic oppression,
the community was wrought with violence,
dysfunction, corruption, high unemployment and
other negative social issues that have become
common place to most First Nations communities across Turtle Island. I was questioning
being involved with a process whereby even
if folks experienced, to a certain extent, making
things right there was still the question of the
environment and context from which the conflict
arose in the first place. How does a RJ program
or process, community, or society for that
matter, tackle such a huge issue? I believe the
question is the same in whichever community
context we find ourselves in because of the
pervasive systemic injustices that surround
us in this modern world. (excerpt)


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