Restorative practice definition: In simple terms, a Restorative Practice Process, is a process that helps individuals work through their differences through relationship building and repair.
The use of restorative practices helps to:
- Strengthen and restore relationships
- Reconcile differences
- Reestablish communication
- Rebuild trust
The Kitsap DRC offers Multi-party Restorative Facilitation, a process developed for any group experiencing conflict. These facilitations can address needs in the workplace, by helping individuals find understanding and common ground, these groups may also take the opportunity to redefine their Workplace Culture. This process also offers families the opportunity to work through difficult circumstances, by improving communication and building trust. All facilitations are tailored for individual circumstances.
Types of Restorative Facilitation:
- Home Owners Associations
- Families—including elder care decision making or support of a struggling family member
- Any multi party group, hoping to work cohesively
Restorative Circle Process…allow victims and offenders and their respective family members and friends to come together to explore how everyone has been affected by an offense and, when possible, to decide how to repair the harm and meet their own needs. (McCold, 2003)
Once a month the DRC convenes a Theft Prevention Circle, which is a restorative process that addresses the needs of youth who have been caught stealing. This “circle” includes their parents and members of the community that they live in. The “circle” allows youth to move past their crime and repair and rebuild relationships that were damaged by their actions.
In addition the DRC convenes Restorative Circle’s for youth who have committed crimes other than theft, most often these referrals are made through the Juvenile Justice System, either by the Diversion Process or by a youth’s Probation officer.
However the DRC is not limited to these types of referrals and can accept proposals by individuals to address any harm committed in Kitsap County.
The DRC also offers Victim/Offender Mediation, where, when possible and appropriate, victims can meet with the person who caused the harm. This type of mediation offers the opportunity for all parties to find some resolution and in many cases to offer apology and forgiveness.