Bigstone Cree Nation Restorative Justice Program endeavors to contribute to the safety, balance and well-being of our communities by ensuring that our people in conflict with the law accept responsibility and have the opportunity to reconcile with victims and communities in a culturally meaningful wholistic manner.
Restorative Justice is a process that provides individuals (offenders) an opportunity to change their lifestyles and to restore personal and family relationships. It's process that involves counseling and conflict resolution to deal with improper behavior that disrupts harmony in the community and creates a feeling of insecurity for individuals, family and the community in general.
This program has been designed to reduce the number of community members going to court and to many, eventually incarceration. While our focus is on victim offender reconciliation, we will deal with all matters that have a negative impact on the lives of community members. The plan is not to contradict the existing way of dealing with the peoples whose behavior harms individual or a community. In fact the plan can enhance existing judicial system by working on the individual's issues that often lead to repeated harmful behavior.
Our plan is for the agencies that are mandated to help people in crises become a big part of restoring the individuals place in society. Representatives from relevant agencies, such as Bigstone Community Wellness, Social Services, Victim Services and local Elders will participate in a healing circle process. In all cases a report will be produced which will outline outcomes and progress of an individual.
Please keep in mind, this Restorative Justice initiative is not meant to lessen the severity of the offense; in fact, we feel determining an appropriate action for behavior that threatens or does harm should be up to the community.