RJ fostering the social…

Nov 28, 2015

 Association des services de réhabilitation sociale de Québec – La Porte ouverte
Une approche différente: la justice réparatrice / restaurative 

Here’s a treat for you!  This edition celebrates RJ week with an entire edition dedicated to the subject.  While mostly in French, the edition does have its key article in English:  Restorative justice as a means to fostering social and community reintegration by Raoul Lincourt, President, Center for Services in Restorative Justice.  The article helps move us beyond the notion that RJ is simply an alternative to prison by focusing on the community http://www.asrsq.ca/fr/salle/porte-ouverte/1502/index.php

Prison Reform Trust (PRT) (UK) – Shona Minson, Rebecca Nadin and Jenny Earle
Sentencing of mothers: Improving the sentencing process and outcomes for women with dependent children 

This is a discussion paper prepared in response to the startling fact that two thirds of women in prison have children under the age of 18.  PRT has been promoting a new look at the disruption and needless social damage caused when mothers are sentenced to jail time for petty crime in particular and is urging a review of the both the sentences and the consequences.  http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/sentencing_mothers.pdf?dm_i=47L,3UGWN,6JSCMH,DV34R,1  (Link is a 28 page downloadable pdf)

Prison Reform Trust (PRT) – UK
Information booklet for people on licence for a sex offence

In the UK, sexual offenders may be released from prison ‘on license’ which details their conditions for return to the community before sentence completion, much like parole.  PRT is offering the guide to the practice of license saying it may be as helpful to offenders, to community agencies providing support, and potential employers as well.  http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/sex%20offender%20information%20booklet.pdf?dm_i=47L,3UGWN,6JSCMH,DV34R,1

Ottawa Citizen – Jim Bronskill, Canadian Press
Supreme Court defines human smuggling in two key judgments

The Court has made two rulings which will impact on human smuggling; one, that those who merely help in tasks for the care of those smuggled cannot be excluded under the provisions of the Immigration and Refugee Acts or charged with smuggling; two, the Court ordered new trials for four previously convicted for organizing and providing services to refugees in a different incident saying they were convicted under an unconstitutional provision.  http://ottawacitizen.com/news/supreme-court-defines-people-smuggling-in-pair-of-key-judgments

Globe and Mail – Sean Fine
Anti-apartheid hero urges Canada to rethink solitary confinement in prisons

The article presents Albie Sachs, a white man, who went to prison in South Africa in the apartheid days and later became part of the legal team that designed the country’s constitution and a judge on the first Multiracial Constitutional Court.   Now retired, Sachs urges Canada to follow up on Trudeau mandate letter to the justice minister to end the practice of solitary confinement.  http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/anti-apartheid-hero-urges-canada-to-rethink-solitary-confinement-in-prisons/article27519574/

Ottawa Citizen – Lee Berthiaume 
The Syrians you’ll see soon: a refugee primer

Refugee workers think that 8-10,000 Syrians refugees will arrive in Canada by Dec. 31 and Berthiaume offers a guide about how to respond to their needs, distinguishing between government and private sponsorship, the current focus being on privately sponsored since many resettlement groups have already been waiting some time for new Canadians.  http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/the-syrians-youll-see-soon-a-refugee-primer   Related article: Ottawa Citizen – Kirstin E. Endemann      What to do this weekend and beyond    http://ottawacitizen.com/entertainment/local-arts/what-to-do-this-weekend-and-beyond-29

The Thompson-on-line (MB) – Monika Gul
Province to build 5 new restorative justice hubs; Mayor Fenske hopeful Thompson will get one

The Restorative Justice Act recently passed in Manitoba is starting to make its presence felt in the opening of five RJ hubs across the province, part of the five year government strategy for implementation.  The centres have not yet been chosen but “the strategy also includes funding new and expanded mental health and drug courts, establishing a restitution recovery program to help victims collect court ordered payments, improving training and building awareness, and identifying supports for chronic, low-risk offenders.”  http://thompsononline.ca/the-thompson-local-news/165364

New York Times – Op Ed – Ned Blackhawk
The Struggle for Justice on Tribal Lands

History has been a hard master for tribal sovereignty in the US.  Once, only a federal court had jurisdiction to punish non-Indian offenders.  Then, in 2013 the US Congress passed the Violence Against Women Act which allowed tribal courts to prosecute a growing lawlessness on the tribal lands by non-Indians.  This concern grows out of an effort to deal with a manager of the Dollar Corporation who sexually exploited a 13 year old boy and was excluded from tribal land and sued civilly.  Now the Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal from the Dollar Corporation.  http://www.nytimes.com/2015/11/25/opinion/the-struggle-for-justice-on-tribal-lands.html?mwrsm=Email&_r=0

TalkPoverty.org – Rebecca Vallas & Billy Corriher
Criminal Justice Reform Will Fall Short If We Fail to Invest in Civil Legal Aid

The authors offer some of the problems confronting those released from prison and the consequent difficult of accessing legal aid to avoid pitfalls that will bring them back into prison, even though legal aid does not defend in criminal matters.  The article weaves a fascinating path through the legal system and its pitfalls for the poor.  http://talkpoverty.org/2015/10/27/criminal-justice-reform-will-fall-short-fail-invest-civil-legal-aid/