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Restorative Justice

Learn more on the Office of Social Justice website.

Serial Podcast and Just Mercy

I got sucked into the Serial podcast, just like the rest of North America. I loved it. I loved the real-life drama, the true-crime evidence, the ability to judge people's intentions and the validity of their testimonies. I loved playing detective, weighing the evidence, surmising guilt and innocence. I loved how it distracted me from the drudgery of painting my basement staircase. I was an enthusiastic consumer of the story of Adnan and Hae, and will vehemently defend my conclusion that Adnan didn't do it. (Argue with me. I dare you.)

Does Justice Require Punishment?

Imagine for a moment that someone has caused you harm—stolen from you, vandalized your property, assaulted you, lied to you, killed a loved one. Make a list--what would you need from others so you could process the harm you have experienced?

Now imagine that you have caused someone harm—you’ve lied to them, ignored them, maligned them, stolen, vandalized, assaulted, perhaps even murdered them. List what you would need from others so you could address the harm you had caused.

Look at each list. What do you notice?

Four Men from Berwyn

Timothy, to me, proved beyond a doubt that my people were racists. Just a few weeks ago, at a restaurant in Berwyn, Illinois, I listened to four retired white men remember that era in their lives, four men who were part of the community that rejected those black children

Is Justice Lean and Mean?

Where was society when they were young and vulnerable? Many stories indicated racism, abuse, abandonment, adoption, addiction, dysfunctional families and communities, of lives spiraling out of control on urban streets.

Doing our Young People Injustice: Christian Dream-killing

One injustice that I've recently become more aware of is what I've begun to think of as "dream-killing," and it's an injustice that those of us in the church practice all too often against our young people. 

Review: The New Jim Crow

In her book The New Jim Crow: Incarceration in the Age of Color Blindness, Michelle Alexander asserts that in an age of color blindness the racialization and oppression of African-Americans continues.

How I Learned about Prostitution...

I began to learn about the sex trade in Canada after I began working as the Executive Director of Indian Metis Christian Fellowship (IMCF) in Regina, Saskatchewan.

It was obvious to anyone who drove the streets of North Central Regina that the women and girls standing at street corners were at work. They were ‘street workers’ waiting for ‘johns’–the men who would pay them for sex. In the area around the ministry, the majority of street workers were Aboriginal females, from children to young adults to grandmothers.

Win a Trip to a Historic Aboriginal Justice Conference

Come see what God is doing! The two winners of the first prize (one Canadian and one American) will win a trip to Edmonton, Canada for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. If you’re between the ages of 18 and 30, you’re invited to submit a 400-800 word reflection or mixed media contribution (eg. spoken word video, Prezi presentation, poem) on one or more of the following questions to the judges panel through drowaan@crcna.org before February 21.

Scholarships for 2014 Justice Conference

This winter, World Renew and the OSJ are able to offer up to 20 scholarships towards the registration cost of The Justice Conference, happening in Los Angeles, Friday evening February 21 through February 22. If you would like to apply for a scholarship to attend this conference let us know by filling out this application by January 20.

Rethinking Punishment

Early in my career as prison chaplain, a prison guard patted me on the back and said, “It’s ok for you to care about them ‘preach,’ but it’s my job to put the boots to them!” The statement, perhaps tongue in cheek, reflects a persistent belief that prisons, the last door of the justice system, must “put the boots to,” or deliver the pain of punishment to, lawbreakers.

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