We believe relationships are the key to living a joyous life. Conflict is the “difference between what was expected and what actually happened.” When we experience conflict, while common, it feels like we are disconnected, un-trusted, or un-valued. We believe to overcome the negative effect of conflict, we need to look at it as an opportunity, take risks, and move toward that conflict. We believe when we maximize these five Restorative Priorities we can implement RJ in settings such as: schools, juvenile, and families. When we face conflict with strong skills and systems we build stronger relationships.
- Conflict Awareness
- Engage All Stakeholders
- Empower Author and Victim
- Value Empathy
- Increase Agency
Our restorative practices seek to build relationship, trust, and understanding through the leveraging of conflict.
The National Center for Restorative Justice is focused on training those interested in changing their relationship with conflict, in-particular we serve those that serve youth.
We challenge the conventional retributive justice system a system that excludes, isolates, and punishes youth in schools, juvenile justice, and family systems. Furthermore, we seek to iterate on the work of the Restorative Justice community, its theory, language, and practice.
Areas of Focus
Restorative Justice is a philosophy that transcends schools, juvenile justice, and families, but that is where we focus.
We believe students, teachers, and administration are a team that must work together to achieve the goal of educating all youth. We believe trust and connectedness are key. This is not just an approach for youthful transgressions but an approach for adult relationships and building an culture that says "We're all in this together."
The love of family is wonderful, however our closest relationships are often challenged by distrust and harm. This approach supports primary romantic relationships as well as that between parents and children. We can shift away from the idea that we have to do everything for our children and begin to build agency in them. We can shift to a place that brings our loved ones even closer.
We believe in the decency of youth, regardless of their actions. We believe they are willing and able to take responsibility for their actions, and with proper support, make things right. Our Restorative Justice system provides many opportunities to build relationships work skills, and educate.