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The Importance of Language

Alexis Gutierrez, December 30 2021

The criminal justice system has long since disproportionately affected BIPOC communities and all individuals who are not cisgender, straight, white, male, or disabled. The oppression and harm of the aforementioned communities continues in their criminalization and potential entry into the criminal justice system. This oppression and harm only conti...

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Sharing Restorative Knowledge Across the Country

Jonathan Dombro, December 23 2021

In Philadelphia, schools city-wide have been adopting and expanding restorative justice programs over the past several years. One key figure in this movement is Josh Staub, who oversees restorative programming at the district level. Before returning to Pennsylvania where he grew up, Staub spent several years working in Oakland and learning from res...

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Spring 2022 Classes on Restorative Justice

RJ Center Berkeley, December 14 2021

With a new semester on the horizon, we encourage you all to make use of Berkeley’s course offerings and integrate restorative justice into your course schedule. We have assembled a list of courses centered on restorative justice and institutional racism below: [LEGALST 190-007] Truth, Justice, and Reconciliation: Responses to State Violence

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Restorative Justice and Call-Out Culture

Alexis Gutierrez, December 2 2021

Cancel culture. What is it? Does it work? Does it do more harm than good? With the answers to these questions still very much open to interpretation, understanding the implications of this phenomenon is  difficult. But for those of us interested in societal ideas about justice, I think it’s pretty important to try. Cancel culture is very unique as...

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Restorative justice or justice denied? With D.A. Gascon, teens tried as adults get a second chance

Alexis Gutierrez, November 24 2021

The criminal justice system has been in dire need of reform since its conception; this reform has come slowly but surely, particularly with the passage of one bill in 2016 focused on ensuring that youth offenders are not transferred to adult court. This bill, Proposition 57, “barred prosecutors from trying juveniles as adults without a judge’s ap...

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Criminalizing Mental Health

Jonathan Dombro, November 17 2021

With as many as 1 in 5 inmates suffering from a major mental illness, it’s not surprising that prisons are frequently called the new asylums. This fact can be seen as part of the broader failure within the justice system to engage in rehabilitative efforts, a position that has especially damaging effects in the case of mentally ill individuals. The...

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Community Works Supports Formerly Incarcerated Individuals with Guaranteed Income

Jonathan Dombro, November 3 2021

Community Works is an Oakland based organization that embodies a philosophy of restorative justice to deliver healing and practical help to system impacted people. This year, they began a revolutionary and inspiring program that provides guaranteed income to  individuals reentering their communities after being incarcerated. The program gives parti...

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The Intersection Between Art and Restorative Justice

Jackie Ho, October 27 2021

This blog post was written by Jackie Ho, a student in the LS 162 AC course in the spring of 2021. Students in this class are invited to address various aspects of restorative justice and current events and produce blog posts for publication here. The Justice Arts Coalition interviewed featured artists Sandra Miller and Cherie Hacker to understand t...

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What Makes a Criminal?

Jonathan Dombro, October 13 2021

Criminal (noun): 1) One who has committed a crime. 2) A person who has been convicted of a crime. This is the definition given by Miriam Webster, and essentially the same as all other definitions of the word that I could find. But if you’re trying to understand how the word is commonly used, this definition is of little help. That’s because people...

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Restorative Justice at the University

Jonathan Dombro, September 29 2021

I hadn’t heard of restorative justice until I attended university. Now I can’t imagine going into the criminal justice field without an understanding of RJ paradigms. I can’t yet picture the implementation of restorative justice programs on a wide scale. However, the ideas behind RJ practices, and their promising results, have provided me with...

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