19 November 2003
Three years on there are many wounds to heal after the political upheavals of 2000. Many hurt people are still seeking justice, answers & space to heal. While the legal justice system is taking its course, ECREA believes that meaningful restorative justice has a role to play.
Participants from Government, Security forces, Churches, NGOs and other civil society organisations have spent the last two weeks attending a Restorative Justice & Mediation Skills workshop & training at Bergengran House, Suva organised by ECREA.
“The events of 2000 and the cry for justice from those affected mean that restorative justice could have a role to play in the ongoing peace building within Fiji”, said Koila Costello Olsson from ECREA’s Gender & Peace Programme. “Restorative justice is a process to involve those who have a stake in a specific offence to collectively, identify and address harms, needs and obligations in order to heal and put things as right as possible”.
The aim of the workshop & training is to expose people involved in justice issues within Fiji to the restorative justice model and to develop an application of a restorative approach in their own spheres of influence. Mediation & conflict transformation skills are a vital component in any conflict situation and participants gained exposure to the necessary mediation skills that are required when one is a third party in a conflict.
The workshop & training has been funded by AusAID and UNIFEM Pacific and led by Vicki Sanderford-O’Connor of Clariquest Consultancy who has a Masters of Arts in Conflict Transformation & Restorative Justice from the Conflict Transformation Programme, Eastern Mennonite University, Virginia USA and Jean Handley founder & Director of Turning Point Partners, a NGO working to influence the judicial, prison & education systems to a restorative model in New Orleans, Louisiana USA.
An ECREA representative will close the workshop on
Friday 21 November at 3.00pm. The media are invited to join
us for the closing & afternoon tea.
Friday 21 November 2003, 3pm, Bergengran House, Pender Street, Suva.
Enquiries to Libby Cass 3307 588 or firstname.lastname@example.org