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From Restorative Communities, to Restorative Cities to Restorative States

“My approach to building “restorative communities” is centred on the belief that global change occurs at the local level.”
(Lee Rush, speaker from the US)

Can you imagine an office for victims that is accessible to the community citizens? An office that will provide for direct services such as “counselling, financial assistance timely and other supplemental resources needed to overcome trauma”? Lamika Wilson, our speaker from the US is working towards actualising this vision.

Doesn’t this sound like an initiative that every restorative city can benefit from? Even though Lamika thinks here about Albany New York, perhaps there will soon be no bounds to the establishment of such offices. Her goal is to “advocate for our most vulnerable population and high priority citizens”. With that, she pays special attention to those people who have historically been left behind – but not in our restorative cities, of course! Check out her talk if you want to hear more about concrete plans.

Speaking of concrete plans… you also shouldn’t miss our next American speaker on the topic of restorative cities, Dr Sandra Pavelka (US). Sandra will share her research in which she found “a majority of states in the US have incorporated restorative justice in statute or code that include general provisions and intent, practices, funding and evaluation.”

Looks like the legislative effects of the restorative cities-movement are already kicking in, and not only in Europe but also in the US! Sandra’s presentation will examine the state of Colorado as a ‘model state’, which notably implements systemic reform by integrating restorative justice principles and practices in law and policy.

If you’re seeking for more hands-on advice and some practical methodology to support the transition to restorative cities, make sure to catch Lee Rush, our expert from America. His presentation will equip us with a better understanding of how to create “economies of compassion”. The methodology required to achieve this kind of – friendly, and very pleasantly sounding – economies, is called “A Small Group” methodology. If you’re curious to learn more, say hi on his Website justCommunityLee is in the role of Executive Director!

Oh, and while you’re here, why not check out our other post on this topic:
“Europe leads the way in restorative cities”

1 Response

  1. EmmanuelChiemezie

    The emergence of restorative cities and States as envisioned by Lamika Wilson shouldn’t be seen as impossible. After all, Europe is already at it. Just as schools, justice systems and other institutions of society are being exposed to restorative justice principles and practices, we should as well welcome and support the idea of restorative cities and States.
    For decades and centuries we have had communities, cities and States that have thrived on retributive systems. Why not embrace the restorative alternative which makes our world one big family of peaceful, happy and cooperative people? The riots, protests, cold and real wars since World Wars 1 & 11 and the unending threat of nuclear wars in the last decade call for restorative cities and States globally.
    Recent occurrences in the United States where racism seems to have defied human rights of certain nationalities call for widespread support for this idea.
    Nigeria has experienced more than what this interesting project seeks to address. Ethnic, religious, communal and political hatred have virtually divided the country. There is mutual distrust which has permeated relationships among the citizens. Government officials haven’t helped matters. The police and courts appear to be biased in handling cases involving the most vulnerable who are poor and not connected to those in political positions. The prison system is populated by this unfortunate citizens. The excitement that has greeted the inclusion of restorative justice in the Nigerian Correctional Service Act may be short-lived. Reason being that there can’t be restorative justice practices in the prison system while the police, courts and other security agencies are still immersed in punitive and retributive practices under draconian structures.
    Nigeria needs to go beyond mere paperwork and public showmanship aimed at creating the impression that we are doing the right thing. Such deception has kept the nation down in every segment of it’s life.
    Real change is needful, especially now that we have been part of RJ World 2020 eConference.
    Thank you, Lamika. Thank you, Lee Rush. Your idea is laudable. Keep at it!

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