Kootenay Restorative Justice (KRJ) is excited to announce their new regional program, encompassing the RCMP detachments of Nelson, Castlegar, Salmo, Nakusp and New Denver.
Recently KRJ received $29,750 from the Civil Forfeiture Crime Prevention Grant program of the federal government. This money will be used to hire a coordinator for a full year of expanding the program, training new volunteers and building capacity in the organization to deliver high quality and effective services to these local communities.
KRJ became a Community Accountability Program back in 2002 and has been in operation since that time. Restorative justice has been used within Canada’s penal system for the past 40 years and has its roots in ancient Indigenous teachings. Restorative justice aims to repair what has been broken after a crime occurs. This process considers the factors that have contributed to the incident of harm. It seeks to find an understanding between the involved parties to fix what has been damaged and implement solutions to restore right relationship and prevent further harm.
Not only does this bring great healing to the people involved it also brings healing to the communities where the crimes take place. Restorative justice is available to first-time youth offenders and sometimes adult first-time offenders, depending on the crime. You can ask the police involved if you would like to resolve a crime in this manner, whether you are the one who caused the harm or the one who has been harmed. Restorative justice works for all parties involved and is a compassionate and humanizing alternative to traditional ways of resolving crimes.
KRJ is looking for a few more volunteers in Salmo, Castlegar, Nakusp and Nelson. If you have a keen interest in Restorative justice and preferably a background in social service work please send an email to KRJCoordinator@kootenayrj.ca.