"Restorative Justice: Inviting Every Voice"
Three key areas of focus for the conference are:
1. Racial Equity
Because judicial and educational systems create barriers for diverse community members to meaningfully engage, we seek to invite and honor the experiences of those whose voices are marginalized. Through knowledge exchange, storytelling and culturally reinforcing dialogue, we will listen and learn how systemic inequalities are negatively impacting members of our community and how this can be addressed. Diverse community member's voices must be better understood in culturally relevant discussions of justice and injustice. We invite presentations/workshop proposals on diverse topics related to systemic barriers leading to inequities.
2. Strengthening Community Partnerships
Restorative justice is a community response to community issues of harm, accountability and healing. Through this focus area, we seek to hear from actual and potential partners who have contributions to make to restorative justice practices. Community-based service providers, social organizations, business owners, faith communities - all these and more have needs, ideas, and resources relevant to how we practice restorative justice, and we invite these voices to influence our conversations at the Forum.
3. Responding to Victims' Voices
As many restorative justice practitioners strive to be more responsive to the varied and nuanced needs of survivors and victims, we invite victims, survivors, and those who serve them to deepen our understanding of their experiences. In order to continue growing and contributing, the restorative justice movement must stay open to having its assumptions challenged and modified through careful listening. Victim services professionals, volunteers, and representatives are crucial members of any healthy restorative conversation.