- Showing 9 posts filed under: Region: North America and Caribbean [–], Country:USA [–] published between May 01, 2010 and May 31, 2010 [Show all]
At this prison graduation, the focus is on knowing the effects of their crimes
....During this season of high school and college graduations, 16 men received a very different kind of diploma Monday at Columbia Correctional Institution, a maximum security prison.
Over three months, the inmates voluntarily completed a 30-session course on restorative justice, a curriculum meant to help them understand how much they'd harmed their victims, the community and themselves. For some of them, Monday's graduation ceremony was the first time they'd done anything worthy of even minimal praise.
"I've been in all sorts of programs and always been kicked out," said Darren Morris, 33, whose peers voted him class speaker.
Ann Arbor schools need to move to a restorative justice model of discipline
from the guest column by Joe Summers:
Over the past year, the children of two sets of friends have gotten into trouble giving me a chance to watch our current system in practice. In one case, I heard teacher after teacher testify that the youth had been exceptional, and never caused harm, only to be astounded to hear a panel of principals and vice principals rule that the youth should be permanently expelled from Ann Arbor's school system.
MHA salutes Dennis Wittman
Dennis Wittman said Tuesday he didn't do anything special in his 25 years of leading the county's Genesee Justice program.
People who attended the Mental Health Association of Genesee County annual meeting heard a different recounting of Witman's career. Wittman received the Constance E. Miller Award, given to a person who shows a strong commitment to mental health treatment in the community.
...."I believe he has gone above and beyond. If you know Dennis Witman, you know that he's excellent," said Kathy France, former board member with the Mental Health Association, the organization that presented Wittman with his award.
What's next for Minnesota's ex-cons?
What does it really take to keep a person from going back to prison? Let's see. Resources that work, perhaps faith and prayers, a change in peers or environment, and, most important of all, the willingness and commitment of the offender to do what it takes to make that change.
....Given that up to 95 percent of offenders eventually return to society, we need to do better. According to one major study, two-thirds of offenders are arrested again within three years of their release. In Minnesota, up to 36 percent of offenders are sent back to prison for a felony within three years of release, pretty much mirroring the national situation.
....Minnesota's Comprehensive Offender Reentry Plan (MCORP) was devised five years ago and funded three years ago to help cut the recidivism rate.
Restorative Justice and Campus Conduct Administration
In March, Eastern Mennonite University hosted a symposium exploring the use of restorative practices in college campus conduct administration. These short YouTube videos feature two of the participants describing their experiences with using restorative practices to respond to student misconduct.
Josh Bacon, the director of Judicial Affairs at James Madison University in Virginia, describes how implementing restorative practices rejuvenated his career.It gives him the opportunity to interact with students and community members.
Local program helps youth offenders repair harm done in communities
The Seward Longfellow Restorative Justice Partnership offers first-time youth offenders an alternative to going to court through participation in a restorative conference.
The program accepts youth ages 10 or older who live or commit a crime in the 55406 zip code. Their typical crimes include trespassing, graffiti, shoplifting and fifth-degree assaults.
Being a trustworthy person and a trustworthy non-profit.
I was listening to MN Public radio and caught a quick statement about trust. One of the guest speakers said that trust depended on two things, if the agency or the person was 1.) well-intended and 2.) competent about the matter at hand.
Twilight for campus legal codes? Talking circles aid the aftermath of destructively drunk students and more.
After more than a decade of ushering misbehaving students at James Madison University (JMU), Harrisonburg, Va., through hearings, sanctions and other legalistic steps, Josh Bacon wanted a change.
"I went into educational leadership and student affairs because I cared about young adults and their futures," he says. "But that’s not how they perceived me—they saw me as the 'bad guy,' somebody there to enforce the university's rules, somebody who wasn’t on their side.'
Seeking a fresh approach, Bacon signed up for a restorative justice course at Eastern Mennonite University, Harrisonburg, taught by an internationally recognized pioneer in the restorative justice field, Howard Zehr.
Text of Virginia legislation concerning victim visits with prisoners
from the new statute:
The Department shall promulgate a policy to assist a person who was a victim of a crime committed by an offender incarcerated in any state correctional facility to visit with such offender. Such policy may include provisions necessary to preserve the safety and security of those at such visit and the good order of the facility, including consideration of the offender's security level, crime committed, and institutional behavior of the offender. The Department shall make whatever arrangements are necessary to effectuate such a visit. This subsection shall not apply to juvenile victims.