City of Vancouver commits to becoming a Restorative City with focus on restorative justice

Published Jan 26, 2022 6:58 PM

VANCOUVER, B.C. - Today Vancouver city council passed a motion by Green Councillor Michael Wiebe to commit funding to the development of a Restorative City Framework, a restorative justice lens for the 2022 budget process, and the development and delivery of restorative justice training for city staff and Council.

“Restorative justice is a different way to understand and achieve justice. It focuses on addressing harm, healing and relationships,” says Councillor Wiebe. “It’s a relational, inclusive, flexible and participatory approach that can be complementary or an alternative to the legal system. It’s guided by values, principles and Indigenous teachings. Affected parties – those who caused harm, those harmed, their families and community – are given an opportunity to participate in determining meaningful accountability, reparation, meeting needs and a path forward.”

Restorative justice has been proven to be effective in addressing harm, reducing recidivism, and increasing public safety. A Restorative City is a city that expands beyond criminal justice to implement restorative values, principles and practices across multiple sectors. The basic goals of a Restorative City include healthy people, safe streets, strong communities, and a connected city that is invested in the humanity of all its citizens.

The motion directs staff to include an option for $200,000 to support a restorative justice lens for consideration by Council for the 2022 Budget process, specific allocation for a $150,000 one-time grant to the Restorative Collective to work on the development of a Restorative City Framework and $50,000 to support the development and delivery of restorative justice training for City staff and Council.