RCMP Launch New Restorative Justice Program
Prince George, B.C. – The Prince George RCMP is looking for volunteers to take part in a new restorative justice program.
Restorative justice is a non-adversarial, non-retributive approach to justice that focuses on the needs of the victims and the offenders, as well as involvement from members of the community.
Youth strategy and resource coordinator Melvin Campbell with the RCMP’s Community Policing Unit adds it’s been formed to help bolster the Prince George Urban Aboriginal Justice Society.
“We are looking to fill a gap that would enhance their existing program,” he says. “So what we’re looking at doing is having a volunteer based program that will target 13-17 year old youth in an effort to address some of their criminal behaviour in a different manner.”
Under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, he says police have the option of referring youth to existing programs “in an effort to make sure they don’t end up with a criminal record.”
So how can the public help?
“What we’re looking at doing is establishing a volunteer based program that will bring on volunteers that will act as facilitators to run community justice forums,” says Campbell. “So that we can look to address some of the harm done to the community and provide a resolution that the victim feels is satisfactory.”
He estimates volunteers would be required to commit to roughly 15 hours a month, adding “that will be based on the number of referrals we have and the number of volunteers we have.”
Campbell is looking for 20-30 volunteers, and says they are looking for a specific skill set.
“We’re looking for some very knowledgeable, confident volunteers because they’re going to be put in some interesting situations and they have to have very good articulation skills and feel confident in the decisions they make.”
Training for this opportunity will be provided free of charge and will take place July 13-15 with additional training opportunities in the fall.
Those interested should contact Linda Parker by calling 250-561-3319 or by emailing her at email@example.com.
You can also contact Melvin Campbell at 250-277-8958 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.