Ground-Breaking Roundtable on Restorative Justice and Gender-Based Violence in BC

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We are thrilled to announce that the results of our project “Restorative Justice and Gender-Based Violence: Revisiting the Conversation in British Columbia” are now available!

Just Outcomes was privileged to partner with the Ending Violence Association of BC to design, coordinate and facilitate a round table of restorative justice, gender-based violence, and Indigenous and immigrant leaders from across the province, along with two subject matter experts from outside BC. Funded by Justice Canada’s Policy Centre for Victims’ Issues, this influential group of leaders explored the use of restorative justice approaches in Gender-Based Violence while acknowledging ongoing barriers and concerns. As a result of this dialogue, eleven themes emerged, including:

  • The Need for Community Resources and Supports
  • The Need for Justice Options Within and Outside of the Criminal Justice System
  • Key Barriers and Concerns in the use of Restorative Justice and Gender-Based Violence Cases
  • Importance of Screening to Address Victim/Survivor Safety Concerns
  • Importance of Assessment and Enhancement of RJ Program Capacity and Gender-Based Violence Training
  • The Need for Funding to Support Cross-Sector Collaboration
  • The Existence of Several Potential Opportunities to use Restorative Justice in Gender-Based Violence Cases
  • The Potential Contributions that Restorative Justice May Offer to Victim/Survivor Recovery
  • The Openness to Expand Justice Options for Victims/Survivors Beyond the Criminal Justice System
  • The Ongoing Need to Engage Communities in Preventing and Responding to Gender-Based Violence
  • The Existence of Research and Knowledge Gaps

These themes, along with key learnings from the dialogue are all discussed in detail in Victims of Crime Research Digest No. 14, “Restorative Justice and Gender-Based Violence: Revisiting the Conversation in British Columbia”, found here.

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About the Author:

Catherine Bargen (MA) has been working within communities toward developing restorative justice (RJ) programs since 1999. She is experienced across Canada and internationally as a consultant, trainer and practitioner in restorative justice and conflict transformation strategies. Since 2002, she has provided training and consultation to over 2000 youth and adults in various settings including schools, faith groups, Aboriginal communities, government and non-government organizations. From 2001-2008, Catherine was on staff with Langley's Fraser Region Community Justice Initiatives Association (CJI) as their senior trainer, facilitator, and mediator. She also worked with CJI in partnership with the Langley School District to implement restorative practices into policy and practice across the District. In this capacity, she co-authored the internationally sought-after resources Conversation Peace and Talking Peace. Prior to her work with CJI, she served as the Victim Offender Mediation Program Coordinator in Edmonton and as a Restorative Justice Educator for Mennonite Central Committee. She received her Master's degree in Conflict Transformation in 2008. Catherine is currently the Restorative Justice Coordinator within Victim Services and Crime Prevention Branch of the government of B.C.. In this role, she is helping to achieve a coordinated vision and strategy of restorative justice across the province. As a volunteer, Catherine serves on the board of Peace it Together (www.peaceittogether.ca) and with the Quaker-based Alternatives to Violence Project.