Empowering civic activism toward a culture of peace.
This is a forum connected with the Telecouncil Series "Restorative Justice on The Rise". Please post your thoughts, questions, and comments and the moderator and host will help connect our featured speakers with this page as well. Questions? Email us.
Tonight's (9/13/12) conversation with Prof. Mikhail Lyubansky Resources:
Paper with Dominic Barter: "A Restorative Approach to Interpersonal Racial Conflict":
Article Featured on TIKKUN
"How Super is Superhero Justice"
It was a beautiful and power-filled discussion this morning. I am honored to be with everyone, and to be allowed to share. The emotion was a bit overwhelming for me. I wanted to end with a positive note: Although my struggles in society have endured for most of my life, recently (since ending corrective involvment in Jan. 2007), I have connected with so many who see beyond the labels. Today, I am successfully attending two outstanding universities, and I feel with a purpose in this world. Creator has a way of using the hardships in life to connect human hearts. I am honored and humbled to be with you all in this way. Thank you all for the interest and work you have and do. In Indian Country we have a way of living that recognizes that when one person struggles, we all struggle. In this way, the struggle is a reflection of who we are collectively. Although many of us are taught such independence, we truly are of a collective nature. It is a natural law of the Web of Life that can not be escaped, only ignored. Resisting the truth of our interconnectedness only perpetuates the mass dysfunction across our world; the legacy left for those to come...
Councilwoman Lisa Robin Spider Woman Sanford
It was a great contribution to have your presence and voice with us today. One of the key aspects as Michelle pointed out in connecting us more deeply to one another and to Truth is our ability to be human and real with one another, and to share our story/ies. I was honored that you had the courage to take it to the next level with us today, thank you. One of the primary aspects of justice to me is creating a safe field for people to speak their truth, and for there to be listening that is much more than hearing. I have shared our forum with Michelle and look forward to the continued conversation here and beyond.
All my relations
Molly, it felt extremely safe and respectful in this arena. Thank you. I love that you end your reply with "All my relations." smile... I too, feel that much is transpiring across the nation (world actually), beyond what we can understand or put into words. Creator (God/Spirit) is making all things new, and it is beautiful!
May I ask, do you know of anyone who does restorative justice relative to Indian Law/Treaty Rights and recognition?
Councilwoman Sanford, Thank you for sharing your experience the natural law of the Web of Life. I am so inline with those thoughts. I have a colleague who is a mediator and worked for over 30 years with the US CRS, has now been retired for 5 years. I sent her the link to this conference, if she responds I will connect you. She has worked for many years in the Native American communities and is known for her, "and they pay me to do this" attitude. She is a gem.
Miss Peggy, that would be lovely. I am part of the Cherokees of Idaho. Chief Tw Davis and our Council have been working diligently to establish some sort of recognition (either federal or state) without much cooperation from government officials. We have incorporated our Tribe. All of this, in hopes of purchasing local lands so that we may construct a place for healing and higher quality of living for our People: housing, cultural center. ceremonial grounds, healthcare/wellness facility, education, and so on. We have requested responses in this process from the governor and other officials. Yet, we are continually ignored. We do not understand how to go about the process that we are informed must take place, when the officials will not even acknowledge our calls, written requests, and formal apps. We are not seeking anything more than to be able to have opportunities to provide healing within our community, and sustain our own. Any leads given for those who have knowledge in this matter would be heart welcomed and appreciated greatly.
Please feel free to contact also, Chief Tw Davis at: firstname.lastname@example.org
I will pass this information and question on. I personally do not have any experience or knowledge of this process. Your goals are beautiful and I pray for success.
I so appreciated your comments and suggestions and wondered where that post showed up. I wanted to feature some of the links you provided, and also let you know I attended the Summit in Denver--it feels like we may have briefly met?
One of the greatest resources in a two-legged human being that I know of pertaining to your question, is Kathryn Ssedoga. She is up north in Canada I believe, and I am connected with her on Twitter--but could help connect the two of you through mutual colleagues. She is a student of this as we are all, but a great and wise, connected, person that may have some specific answers for your question.
Thanking you again for your presence.
Thank you! Please do pass along my info. I, and the Cherokees of Idaho, would greatly appreciate any assistance and knowledge shared.
Warrior74Real@aol.com (my e-mail)
Blessings to all....
I loved the forum. Our small non-profit Peace and Justice of La Luz provides voter information to felons, books to jail & recovery houses, hosts a booth at our county fair focused on opening a discussion about the failed War on Drugs, led a forum on Restorative Justice for our local Behavioral Health organization and, as Treasurer of our NAACP branch, we donated Michelle Alexander's book The New Jim Crow to our local library.
We're trying to start citizen/community police review/complaint committees with our local police and sheriff, looking at models provided by the International Police Chiefs website, but we wonder if there are better models to follow. This seems like it could be restorative justice in principle...is it?
I am inspired by your on-the-ground work! Do you have a programming HQ for people to donate books to a central locale that can be distributed to prison libraries nationwide? This is one area I am working on finding more about along with the Prison In-Reach Program of Winter Feast for the Soul and others. I asked my mother who is incarcerated in Idaho if the Librarian had any information on a network of libraries that could be centrally donated to, but she said that they didn't have any info. The result was that I've donated Cultivating Peace, The Last Hustle, and just now The New Jim Crow to singular facilities/prisons.
You ask a great question about the model you suggest--I would look into the working system in New Zealand for the clearest answer--I am trying to get them on this council series asap to share about the Juvenile system they have set up which is a community conferencing model that includes a police officer, community member, etc. You might also look into what Dominic Barter is doing with Restorative Circles. As well as what Heart Phoenix, Jeffrey Weisberg and Dot Maver and staff are doing at The River Phoenix Center for Peacebuilding
Further, as Peggy has suggested, here in Colorado there are powerful implemented models of this type of format of RJ with the Longmont Community Justice Partnership, with the city of Estes Park, and if you go to the Colorado Restorative Justice page it might be a useful hub for more info, as well as the Restorative Justice Online page.
I also highly recommend the work of Sylvia Clute, author of Beyond Vengeance, Beyond Duality, who is coming out soon with a free working model in youth RJ and Unitive practices. She likely will join us later in the Fall to share this on the council.
I hope this is helpful...and look forward to hearing more about your work!
Sorry for the delay getting back to you. I don't have a computer at home & rely on friends or the public library.
Thanks you for all the resources you provided. I look forward to checking them out.
About the books: when my son was in jail and then prison, I discovered what a shortage of books inmates have to read. We talked to our local library and found we could get books cheap, cheap, cheap from books donated to them that they sell in book sales twice a year. We live in a small town, rural New Mexican community 100 miles north of El Paso and our county operates a privately-run, 'immigrant' (undocumented and overflow from our jail) prison close to El Paso, but we have been unable to get books in Spanish and deliver them that far away. We copied "Books Behind Bars" as our project name from some website or inmate support network.
I look forward to learning more and then sharing.