The Annie E. Casey Foundation will host two webinars on Jan. 25 and Feb. 17, 2021, respectively, on how communities can use restorative justice as a constructive and more equitable response when young people break the law in ways that cause harm. Restorative justice provides an effective way to address wrongdoing and do right by the people harmed. It offers opportunities outside of the juvenile justice system for young people to take accountability for harm they have caused. It acknowledges that legal proceedings can be difficult and unproductive for those harmed, those responsible for the harm, their families and other community members.
“Restorative justice represents a complete paradigm shift from viewing harm as a violation of the law to understanding it as a violation of people and relationships that requires accountability and healing,” says Ashlee George, associate director of Impact Justice’s Restorative Justice Project and a panelist for the first of these webinars. “This approach gives all communities, especially marginalized ones, a powerful tool to replace the criminalization of youth of color.”
The Casey Foundation’s webinars are geared toward youth justice practitioners, racial justice advocates and leaders of youth-oriented community-based organizations. The webinars will feature experts from Impact Justice, a Casey grantee and national nonprofit organization that promotes restorative justice and other solutions to prevent or minimize justice system involvement, and professionals in the justice and nonprofit sectors who are implementing restorative justice as an effective response to wrongdoing by young people in their communities.
The Pretrial Justice Institute — Casey’s JDAI training partner — is organizing the webinars for JDAIconnect. Registrants can participate in the webinars without joining JDAIconnect, the Foundation’s free online community for JDAI practitioners and people interested in youth justice. Members of JDAIconnect will have the added benefit of accessing online discussions and additional resources.
Addressing Racial and Ethnic Disparities on Jan. 25, 2021
The first webinar is entitled “Addressing Racial and Ethnic Disparities That Criminalize Communities of Color Through Restorative Justice.” During the hourlong webinar, the panelists will discuss restorative justice approaches as strategies for racial justice. The presenters will invite attendees to ask questions or comment about how restorative justice practitioners can better center communities of color in their work.
Register for the first webinar
What: Addressing Racial and Ethnic Disparities That Criminalize Communities of Color Through Restorative Justice
When: 2 p.m. ET, Monday, Jan. 25, 2021
- Sheila Calloway, Judge, Juvenile Court of Metropolitan Nashville and Davidson County, Tennessee
- Stephanie Medley, Youth Justice Director, RYSE Youth Center, Richmond, California
- Ashlee George, Co-Director, Restorative Justice Program, Impact Justice
- Sia Henry, Senior Program Specialist, Restorative Justice Program, Impact Justice
Community-Held Programs on Feb. 17
The second webinar, “The Importance of Community-Held Restorative Justice Programs,” will highlight ways community leaders can create, nourish and deepen relationships that are necessary for them to implement and sustain restorative justice practices outside of the formal justice system. The discussion will include ways for public partners to support community-led restorative justice diversion.
Register for the second webinar
What: The Importance of Community-Held Restorative Justice Programs
When: 2 p.m. ET, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021
- Venus D. Johnson, Chief Assistant District Attorney, Contra Costa County (Sacramento), California
- Tanisha “Wakumi” Douglas, Co-Founder and Executive Director, S.O.U.L. Sisters Leadership Collaborative, Miami
- Sandra Rodriguez, Senior Program Specialist, Restorative Justice Program, Impact Justice
- Erica Washington, Senior Program Associate, Restorative Justice Program, Impact Justice