An Extra Judicial Measures Program
What is Restorative Justice?
- is a philosophy that views crime as a violation of relationships;
- recognizes that crime hurts individuals and communities;
- creates an obligation for the person who has harmed to make things right;
- provides, where appropriate, opportunities for all involved to discuss the impact of a harmful incident;
- provides a constructive and meaningful response to crime and conflict; and
- creates opportunities for accountability, understanding, problem solving and healing.
What services are available?
Community Justice Circle (CJC)
Face to face meeting where impacted parties meet and discuss how they have been impacted by an
event and create a plan for resolution.
Restorative Resolution Meeting
Committee style meeting where youth meet with trained community members to discuss the harm
related to their actions and a plan for resolution.
Community volunteers provide adult leadership and support to youth to fulfil their plans of resolution.
RCMP Members Consultation
Staff is available to RCMP members to consult with them on appropriate files.
Referrals to the Surrey Restorative Justice Program are accepted by the Surrey RCMP.
Benefits of Restorative Justice
Victims of crime or conflict have an opportunity to:
- discuss the personal impact an incident has had on them;
- gain a greater understanding of the incident;
- actively participate in a process of determining appropriate reparation; and
- obtain resolution and closure.
Youth who have caused harm have an opportunity to:
- take responsibility for their actions within the community;
- participate in developing a fair and reasonable agreement with those who were harmed;
- repair harm and make things right with the help of a supportive community; and
- avoid a lengthy court process and criminal record.
For the community, the program provides:
- a more expedient and cost effective alternative to court;
- an opportunity for community involvement and active participation in the judicial process;
- a greater sense of justice defined by accountability, understanding and healing; and
- an opportunity to build stronger and safer communities.
What participants are saying...
I’m very thankful that this program is in place. Correction has a more positive result than punishment for youths who have made a wrong choice... (Parent)
This program and circle were very helpful for me. I now feel like I don’t have to hide anymore and I can live my life without a dark cloud over my head (Youth)
I feel that the face-to face meeting my son experienced will be a more effective deterrent from crime than any other conventional solution ... (Parent)
The RJ circle was a very impressive and successful meeting which was run in a very professional, structured and compassionate manner. The meeting had everyone leave with a positive feeling and the youths involved had been completely accountable for their actions... (Victim)
I felt that everything was fair and I learned a lot from this program. It really helped me change what I did wrong and make full restitution for my actions. (Youth)
Restorative Justice restores the victims and offenders with things like trust, honesty, compassion, respect which are the goals of our organization. (RCMP member)
What is the Surrey Restorative Justice Program (SRJP)?
It is a volunteer based program that:
- supports youth by encouraging them to understand the effects of the harm they have done and provides them with opportunities to make amends;
- focuses on restoration and healing for victims by giving them a voice and addressing their needs;
- provides alternatives to youth involvement in the formal court process of the criminal justice system by way of extra-judicial measures; and
- supports the External link, opens in a new windowCity of Surrey Crime Reduction Strategy
Who is eligible for the program?
Surrey youth between 12 and 17 years who:
- have caused harm to another person, property or community through their behavior;
- acknowledge their involvement in a crime or conflict;
- consent to participate in a restorative justice process; and
- have no previous convictions or charges.
Young adults aged 18-25 who meet the above criteria may also be accepted on a case-by-case basis, providing that the offence is non-violent and they have no criminal history.
What does the process look like?
The SRJP offers two models of intervention:
- Community Justice Circle: is a face-to-face meeting between the victim and young person and relevant support and/or community people. It takes place in a circle-shaped forum and focuses on repairing the harm caused by the crime, rather than punishment. Everyone present has the opportunity to voice what happened, what led up to the incident and how it affected them. A neutral facilitator guides them in discussing these issues, and in the process of developing a fair and reasonable written agreement in response to the incident.
- Restorative Resolution Meeting: is similar to a Community Justice Circle but is held with the young person and his/her guardians. The young person attends a meeting with community volunteers where the issues related to the offence are discussed and a fair and reasonable agreement is reached.
A volunteer Mentor is assigned to help the young person fulfill their agreement. Some of the conditions of the agreement may include: a verbal or written apology, community service hours, financial compensation, counseling and other suggestions mutually agreed upon.
The Surrey Restorative Justice Program is considered an extrajudicial measures program under the Youth Criminal Justice Act . As a result, referrals are currently being accepted from RCMP members.
Surrey Restorative Justice Program
Jana Stocker, Coordinator
For more information on the Surrey Restorative Justice Program please contact the Program Coordinator.