What passes for justice in Canada is a system that too often brutalizes and isolates both victim and perpetrator: the former, bewildered, shattered, feeling victimized again by a process that fails to give satisfactory answers, fails to lay matters to rest; the latter, bitter, angry, alone, condemned to a hell called prison from which he emerges almost certain to repeat his crimes. The separate universes of victim and perpetrator, thesis and antithesis, need to be integrated into a whole, a synthesis, that does not perpetuate injustice but enables justice to flower. With shining examples like Randy Charboneau’s first-hand account of his own inspiring transformation, this revolutionary book tells us how – how to turn the worst transgressions of human experience into an opportunity for understanding and healing, a process known as restorative justice. A much-needed tome, clearly and compellingly presented. May it work its magic in helping to transform our society into a community where justice is not a competitive sport but an expression of the essential fairness possible in human interaction.
authors Lazarus and the Hurricane: The Freeing of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter
A work of vision, compassion and great generosity of spirit. Art Lockhart, Lynn Zammitt and Randy Charboneau present a strong case for adopting the methods of restorative justice and applying them to the care of young people. At the heart of the authors’ work is a healing vision based on sound principles of social justice, inclusion and social transformation. The ideas contained in the pages of this book will contribute significantly to the evolution of professional practice in the field of youth justice.
Community Psychologist/Director of Research
and Program Development, Central Toronto Youth Services
This (restorative justice circle) is a process that really needs to happen.
Cree Elder, A founding member of Wandering Spirit, First Nations School,
author of Follow the Red Path, recipient of Local Hero Award
of The Canadian Urban Institute
Traditional disciplinary approaches … were at best like putting a band-aid on a gushing wound, and often made the situations worse… In contrast, …restorative justice is a “breath of fresh air” that provides an opportunity to truly help repair relationships between people.
School Social Worker
As a professional I think we have to be open to alternative ways of thinking about and comprehending forgiveness. Restorative Justice—Transforming Society is the book to encourage all of us to be open to alternative ways of thinking and doing justice.
Executive Director, The Gatehouse
To build a future for our children, we must understand our roots, and be willing to struggle together to restore balance in our lives. This book is about teaching old wisdom to new communities of youth who need to find their balance to build their futures.
Maori Studies, Univ of Victoria, Wellington, NZ