Canadians expect to live in a society where the criminal justice system is fair and impartial, responds to the harms caused by crime and helps to keep them safe. An effective justice system encourages meaningful engagement and accountability, and provides an opportunity for healing, reparation and reintegration.
In recognition of Restorative Justice Week (November 15-22), Wednesday, the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced the Government of Canada’s continued support to restorative justice initiatives across the country. Yesterday, Andy Fillmore, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, on behalf of Minister Lametti, visited the Coverdale Courtwork Society, one of the local organizations receiving this funding, to discuss and highlight their restorative justice initiative. The Department of Justice is providing $204,000 over three years from 2020 to 2023 to the Coverdale Courtwork Society under Justice Canada’s Youth Justice Fund.
With their funding, Coverdale Courtwork Society will develop, implement and evaluate a pilot program entitled “Girls Path” to support young girls in conflict with the law, and help them build on their personal strength, self-awareness, and cultural identity. The project will use a restorative approach and will be gender and culturally responsive. In collaboration with local community partners working with at-risk youth, Coverdale will respond to the inequities that impact Black and Indigenous girls and provide services that meet them where they are, focusing on community care, prevention, early intervention, and culturally informed programming.
“Restorative justice holds offenders accountable, promotes safer communities, improves outcomes for victims and provides opportunities for healing, repairing harm, and reintegration. I am pleased the Government of Canada is supporting Coverdale Courtwork Society for their initiative related to restorative justice.”
Member of Parliament for Halifax and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Infrastructure and Communities
“At Coverdale, we recognize that inequalities in the education system, income, employment, social services, housing and health all intersect and impact the lives of Black and Indigenous girls and can create pathways to criminal justice involvement. With funding from the Department of Justice Canada we are able to respond to the inequities that impact Black and Indigenous girls and provide wrap around services that meet them where they are, focusing on community care, prevention, early intervention, and culturally informed programming. These community interventions are sustainable; acknowledge inequity; are rooted in empowerment; are restorative, intersectional; and collaborative.”
Bria Symonds, Cultural Pathways Coordinator
Coverdale Courtwork Society
Restorative justice aims to engage families and communities to participate in the healing, reparation and reintegration of youth and adults involved in the criminal justice system.
Restorative justice is based on encouraging accountability of those involved and helps to support better outcomes for victims.