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Showing 10 posts filed under: Victim [–] [Show all]

California's victims restitution fund running on empty

from the article by Jim Miller in The Press-Enterprise:

California's fund to help victims of crime is teetering on insolvency, with state officials this week scheduled to consider several cost-cutting moves to keep the account from going broke by next year.

The state restitution fund is the payer of last resort for crime victims and the oldest such program in the country. It has covered more than $2 billion worth of doctor's bills, burial costs and other expenses from hundreds of thousands of claims since it began in 1965.

....Victims advocates point to other causes for the fund's troubles: money taken by other parts of state government.

Feb 21, 2011 , , ,

Redeeming the Wounded: New book features new vision for victims’ justice

B. Bruce Cook, Redeeming the wounded: A prison Chaplain's journey into crime victims advocacy, Xulon Press, 2010.

from the press release at  PRWeb.com:

In 2008 approximately 16,262 people were murdered in the U.S., leaving family and friends to grieve the loss. (Source: NCVRW Resource Guide) Many faith-based organizations want to help but do not know how. Due to budget cuts, funding for rehabilitation and educational, faith-based counseling programs for prisoners and crime victims has suffered in almost every locality. A new way to handle these problems is discussed in Redeeming the Wounded by Rev. Dr. B. Bruce Cook (www.xulonpress.com and www.cvaconline.org under “crime victim resources”). Cook’s new vision of victim justice involves a concept of fair and equal treatment for crime victims and prisoners based on principles of restorative justice and restitution.

....Cook’s call to action includes: 

Feb 18, 2011 , , ,

Victim Support chief addresses restorative justice conference

from the organization's website:

Victim Support describes itself as "the independent charity for victims and witnesses of crime in England and Wales. We were set up 35 years ago and have grown to become the oldest and largest victims' organisation in the world. Every year, we contact over 1.5 million people after a crime to offer our help."

Speaking at the Restorative Justice Approaches conference on Thursday 27 January, Javed [Khan] said: “We have for many years supported restorative justice projects up and down the country. We know that one of the greatest benefits of restorative justice is to victims of crime and that satisfaction rates among victims are particularly high when it is victim led.”

Welcoming the government’s commitments to restorative justice he added: “I want to make sure that these are more than just warm words and that restorative justice becomes a right for every victim who wants it.”

Feb 17, 2011 , , , , , ,

Awesome things happen when people come together

by Lynette Parker

Recently, I met with representatives from Prison Fellowship Italy  (PF Italy) visiting the Washington, DC area. In early 2010, a colleague and I had visited Italy to train members of the new organisation in the Sycamore Tree Project® so I was really looking forward to hearing about their experiences and the lessons learned. I wasn’t prepared for the awe inspiring stories that they told.

The Sycamore Tree Project® is an in-prison restorative justice programme bringing together unrelated victims and prisoners for a series of six to eight sessions. Through the sessions, participants explore the impact of crime, taking responsibility, confession, repentance, making amends, forgiveness and reconciliation.  PF Italy worked quickly to implement this programme in Italian prisons but faced a few obstacles. In the end, the prison administration allowed them to start but with the proviso that the first group consist of prisoners who were mafia members convicted of committing murder and survivors of victims of such mafia activity.  I remember receiving that news and thinking, “That’s not where I would want to start.”

Feb 14, 2011 , , , , ,

Interview with Debbie, a rape victim of Robert Power

from the interview by Ines Aubert:

Ines Aubert was a pen pal of Robert Powers who had been sentenced to death for the rape and murder of a 12-year-old girl. She discovered over time that Robert had changed profoundly and that he wanted, among other things, to extend an apology to any of his victims who wished to receive that. 

This took on some urgency at the end of 2010 as Robert neared the end of his life (he died of cancer on December 3). Ines contacted restorative justice consultant and RJOnline Correspondent Lisa Rea for assistance, but they were unable to find a way to reach out to Robert's victims. Lisa wrote about this in an earlier blog entry on RJOB.

Commenting on an article about Robert's death in a Florida newspaper, Ines wrote that he had wanted to apologize before his death but had been unable. Another reader -- one of Robert's victims -- replied to Ines that she had forgiven Robert. The two were able to connect, and Ines recently interviewed Debbie about her experience as a victim and the reasons for her forgiveness. The following is a short excerpt of an answer Debbie gave to Ines' question about how she felt when she learned that Robert had a pen pal.

Feb 11, 2011 , , , , , , , ,

Laura's Law: Remembering the victims of violence

by Lisa Rea

Considering gun related violence and its impact on the victims, I remember the courageous work of Amanda and Nick Wilcox in Northern California in the name of their daughter, Laura. A recent press piece describes what they have done to fight violence since the shooting death of their daughter at the hands of Scott Thorpe on January 10, 2001.  

Feb 08, 2011 , , , ,

The promise of restorative justice: New approaches for criminal justice and beyond

John P.J.Dussich and Jill Schellenberg, eds. (2010) The promise of restorative justice: New approaches for criminal justice and beyond. Boulder CO and London: Lynne Reiner Publishers. 275pp. ISBN 978-1-58826-723-8. Price: US$59.95

Reviewed by Martin Wright

It is becoming increasingly clear that the principles of restorative justice can be used, as the editors say, outside the formal criminal justice system, and this book bears witness to that. Half is about criminal justice, and half about other applications in schools and elsewhere. The contributors reflect the book’s origins among a group at Fresno Pacific University in California, but other chapters come from Bulgaria, Canada, Hong Kong and the United Kingdom. 

Jan 28, 2011 , , , , , , , , , , , ,

1000th Sycamore Tree - Restorative Justice programme changes prisoner’s lives

from the press release by Prison Fellowship, England and Wales:

Prison Fellowship’s restorative justice programme Sycamore Tree achieves a milestone today (14th December) when the 1000th programme is completed. 

Over 30 Prisons and Young Offenders Institutions in England and Wales offer the programme and around 2,000 learners participate every year. The 1000th Sycamore Tree is being offered at HMP Wayland, Norfolk.  

Sycamore Tree raises the awareness of the impact of crime on victims and teaches the principles and application of restorative justice.

Dec 28, 2010 , , ,

Against my will

by Radha Stern

Radha Stern's son Christopher was murdered in 1996. This is her story of how meeting with prisoners, and eventually with the man who killed her son, has helped her find relief and comfort.

Getting into a prison is intimidating.  Accompanied by my prison escort, I went to the first gate, presented my ID to a guard who carried a gun.  I signed in, was approved and went to the next gate to meet another armed guard and pass through a metal detector.  After that gate, I went to another entrance with a guard and gun, signed in, was checked in and approved by the computer, was scanned with a hand-held metal detector, and stamped under the left wrist with the daily stamp.  Then I went into a Sally port   a large cell – where a huge door slams shut with a resounding “clank.”  I was held there until the opposite door opened with another loud “clank,” and I entered another Sally port, which then unlocked and allowed me access into a large open quad.

Dec 17, 2010 , , ,

A lesson in manners

from the editorial in Aldergrove Star:

The following is a letter written by a few teenagers, who recently used Facebook to hurt someone, intentionally. Having the letter printed in the local paper, The Agassiz Harrison Observer, is one way they are working on their restitution, through Chilliwack's Restorative Justice Program.

We have chosen to run the letter in its entirety. By law, the teens cannot be named.

Dec 14, 2010 , ,

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