Award-winning restorative justice serves Oak Bay

Province recognizes Victoria-area team for innovative partnerships

Restorative Justice Victoria with the Restorative Justice Memorial Award

The restorative justice team that serves Oak Bay is doing things well, according to the province.

Restorative Justice Victoria, which covers Oak Bay, Victoria, Esquimalt and some work on the West Shore, earned the Restorative Justice Memorial Award during the province’s annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards.

“It’s a valuable recognition I think because for one thing it’s nice the province is acknowledging the work being done by restorative justice programs. There hasn’t always been that recognition,” said Gillian Lindquist, executive director for RJV. “It’s nice that it’s coming from the province and they’re recognizing good restorative justice work out there in the community. Often you get lots of recognition from the community and your community partners, but it doesn’t feel like the province is paying attention.”

The Restorative Justice Memorial Award recognizes commitment to innovative partnerships that have advanced restorative justice.

“Our goal is to walk about and understand what happened,” Lindquist said  “Usually that involves focusing on two things, how to heal the way people have been harmed. That focuses on the victim … but we do work around the offender and address how and why the offence happened in the first place.”

RJV supports those affected by crime through victim-offender conferencing, peace-making circles, victim-offender mediation and referrals to community services. Through years of research and program development, RJV has developed best practices – providing education to citizens; building partnerships with police, Crown counsel and the community; training facilitators and mentors; and developing and implementing an extensive evaluation program.

“What’s awesome about B.C. is it’s by the community for the community, and (the programs are) really responsive to their individual community’s needs,” she said.

Despite the best intentions, the individual community nature of B.C. restorative justice programs sometimes leaves a lack of consistent, quality programs with evaluations in place and reliance on research and evidence-based practices. The awards recognize the extra effort.

“They want programs to keep that grassroots feel and be responsive to their community but want to demonstrate they’re doing safe and valuable restorative justice practices,” Lindquist said.

The provincial awards acknowledge the efforts of volunteers, non-profit organizations and other local public safety partners that are integral to reducing crime, violence and victimization in the community and provide critical support to the efforts of law enforcement and others in the justice sector.

These efforts complement significant investments in the provincial Guns and Gangs Strategy, policing, community safety and victim services, which are supporting safer and stronger communities throughout B.C.

“Each individual and organization we’re honouring through Community Safety and Crime Prevention Awards has set a stellar example – engaging constructively in various ways to build community and help ensure the safety of young, marginalized and vulnerable people,” said Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “By sharing the stories of how much our award winners have done, I’m hopeful we’ll inspire other British Columbians to champion public safety causes in their regions and communities.”

 

Just Posted

Victoria police search for missing senior last seen in James Bay at noon today

Elsie Habbick, 75, is quite mobile, despite suffering from dementia

PHOTOS: 120th Annual Victoria Day Parade

Check out the photo gallery, watch our live feed of the festivities

Reporter gets serious with Tour de Victoria’s 140km ride

Travis Paterson’s training blog for Ryder Hesjedal’s Tour de Victoria on Aug. 18, Volume 1

Victoria Day Parade returns to celebrate 120 years

F18 Hornets to honour #HumboldtStrong with first ever fly past, kicking off parade

Preserving Victoria’s character buildings costly, but worth it

Pemberton and Son recognized for heritage preservation of Promis Block

Oak Bay optometrist challenges community to target 100 for Ride Don’t Hide

Annual event to raise funds, awareness for Canadian Mental Health Association June 24 in Windsor Park

SAR scaling back in Kilmer search, but friends will keep looking

Search for 41-year-old Cobble Hill dad hits six-day mark

Rachel Notley to skip premiers conference to focus on pipeline deal

Kinder Morgan has ceased all non-essential spending on the Trans Mountain pipeline project until it receives assurances

B.C. tech company will power Uber Elevate

Moli and Uber announce research and development partnership.

Olympian sues USA Swimming, saying it failed to protect her

Ariana Kukors Smith alleges her former coach Sean Hutchison began grooming her for sexual abuse at the age of 13

Defence minister thanks troops for B.C. flood relief work

Harjit Sajjan says not only was military response quick, support from locals has been ‘tremendous’

Still no sign of missing father in Cowichan Valley

Search group for Ben Kilmer now stands 40 SAR volunteers and another 100 friends and concerned community members

Couple survives being buried in mudslide on B.C. highway

The couple, from Saskatchewan, were en route to Nelson when a tree fell in their path

‘So grateful:’ Injured Bronco hockey player glad he’s alive, works on recovery

Ryan Straschnitzki was badly hurt in the accident: a spinal injury, broken ribs, a broken collar bone, and punctured lung

Most Read