Correctional Service of Canada

Correctional Service of Canada

November 09, 2006 15:32 ET

CSC/Restorative Justice Week: "Creative Partnerships, Collaborative Action"

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 9, 2006) - The Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) is celebrating Restorative Justice Week from November 12 to 19, 2006 by holding events in its institutions and communities across Canada.

Restorative Justice is a unique and collaborative approach to justice that involves all parties affected by crime, including victims, offenders and the community. This year's theme, Creative Partnerships, Collaborative Action celebrates the expression of creativity found within existing partnerships, and challenges us to forge new and stronger ones.

Over the last two decades, CSC has been actively involved in providing leadership in the area of Restorative Justice. "Everything CSC does, in its institutions and in the communities, is fundamentally about public safety," says CSC's Commissioner Keith Coulter. "Restorative Justice increases offender accountability, contributes to healing in victims and encourages citizen involvement in creating healthier, safer communities."

From November 15 to 17, Restorative Justice New Brunswick, with the assistance of the CSC, will present a two-day symposium followed by an evening ceremony recognizing this year's Ron Wiebe Award recipient.

This is the eighth annual Ron Wiebe Restorative Justice Award presentation. This award is presented to Canadians who have demonstrated, through their work or lifestyle, ways of transforming human relationships by enabling and promoting communication and healing between people in conflict, including victims, offenders, colleagues, families, or neighbours.


RESTORATIVE JUSTICE

BACKGROUNDER

- Restorative Justice is a non-adversarial, non-retributive approach to justice that emphasizes healing for victims, meaningful accountability of offenders, and the active involvement of citizens in creating healthier, safer communities.

- As much as possible, restorative justice involves the victim, the offender and the community in a process which attempts to heal the harm caused by crime, and to pave the way for more peaceful and collaborative ways of resolving conflicts in our workplace as well as in the broader society.

- Crime is a violation of people and relationships. Restorative justice works to repair this damage and promote healing and growth.

- The concept of restorative justice has early roots at the Correctional Service Canada (CSC) in its Aboriginal and Chaplaincy divisions. In 1996, CSC established a separate, dedicated unit to explore emerging trends and initiatives in the fields of restorative justice and dispute resolution. The first 'Restorative Justice Week' was also celebrated that year, having evolved through the years as Prisoners' Sunday and Prisoners' Week.

- Restorative Justice Week is celebrated in the community and at institutions all across Canada, including CSC National Headquarters. This year's Restorative Justice Week will take place from November 12-19, 2006. The theme is: "Creative Partnerships & Collaborative Action." This theme celebrates the expression of the creativity found within existing partnerships and challenges us to forge new and stronger ones. These new alliances provide an opportunity to introduce restorative justice principles, values, and initiatives to broader cross sections of Canadians.

- In 1999, CSC established an award to honour the late Ron Wiebe who was the Warden of Ferndale and Elbow Lake minimum-security institution, until his death in 1999. Mr. Wiebe was a pioneer in the field of restorative justice. This award is presented every year during Restorative Justice Week in recognition of Canadians who have demonstrated, through their work and lifestyle, ways of transforming human relationships by enabling and promoting restorative justice and dispute resolution practices.

- The principles of restorative justice can be found in several of CSC's core values, which emphasize individual dignity, respect and potential, as well as those that recognize the importance of community connections and partnerships. The dedicated activities of CSC's Restorative Justice and Dispute Resolution Branch and the related work of other branches, sectors and regions, has established CSC as a prominent player in the restorative justice and dispute resolution movement. Combined with the efforts of the RCMP, the Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness, the National Parole Board and the Department of Justice, CSC's efforts contribute to a tangible federal government leadership in this area.

Contact Information

  • Correctional Service of Canada
    Terry Richardson
    Restorative Justice and Dispute Resolution Branch
    613-996-0373
    or
    Correctional Service of Canada
    Christa McGregor
    Media Relations
    613-947-4815
    www.csc-scc.gc.ca