The RJ Center has partnered with PATH to Care to create the Restorative Justice/Transformative Justice Working Group made up of people representing an array of campus entities, including Title IX, Center for Student Conduct, the Student Advocates Office and more. We’ve worked over the past 1.5 years to develop proposals for the implementation of a prevention model that incorporates restorative practices and a response model that incorporates restorative and transformative justice approaches. While the campus shutdown for Covid-19 has slowed our progress, we continue to work on specific areas of the proposal, which include strengthening relationships with campus partners and developing resources that will be central to success moving forward.
RJ Student Leaders have created a timeline that charts activism around campus responsiveness to sexual violence and sexual harassment, including bias, violence and harassment against students who identify as lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender and queer. With this timeline, we celebrate the courage of survivors who began to tell their stories openly in the press, and strategized locally and nationally to demand changes in campus structures for response. At UC Berkeley, for example, campus activism led to the development and expansion of the PATH to Care Center, which has transformed the campus landscape in terms of centering care and resources for students, staff and faculty who experience harm. Many campuses have similar stories.
In spring of 2021, The RJ Center is partnering with Legal Studies to offer a course on Restorative Justice with an emphasis on RJ as an alternative to the criminal legal system. Course content addresses the violence of the criminal legal system and its impacts on the lives of people who are caught up in that system, as well as families and communities. The course will feature films and guest speakers who can offer first hand experience of the impact of RJ in their lives, and its possibilities for systemic change. RJ Student Leaders are also working on a collection of articles and resources for people to explore to enhance their understanding of the intersections of the Restorative Justice, Black Lives Matter and Prison Abolition movements. We’re also planning an event to discuss Policing in Schools in spring 2021.
Over the past year, RJ Student Leaders have begun to explore ways to integrate RJ work and decolonization practice. We have determined to begin all of our RJ processes and workshops with statements to acknowledge the violent history of UC Berkeley’s development, and the specific people whose land we occupy and benefit from every day.
In addition, we have partnered with Berkeley Law to write a grant proposal that explores the interlocking relationships between RJ practice, Tribal Law, and Truth, Accountability and Reparation processes. We are still in the development phase of understanding this area of our community engagement, and welcome all ideas.
Restorative Re-Entry Circle, 2018
Time to Spring Up Workshop, 2019
Our SVSH workshops Spring 2020
First RJ trainings in Stiles Hall, Spring 2015
Our staff and RJ student leaders produce resources to promote the creation of community and healing on college campuses. We collaborate with campus partners to research and strategize on ways to bring Restorative Justice into various campus communities. We also create toolkits to document ideas on ice-breakers, guiding questions, and activities to facilitate circle practices. Download our PDFs below for more information.
RJC AnnualReport 2019-20.pdf
The RJ Center maintains complete confidentiality in all our processes, and everything that is said in our RJ processes is protected by California evidentiary standards, except for sexual harm cases, which are subject to UC policies. RJ Center practitioners are considered to be responsible employees and are not confidential for any sexual harm cases that are subject to UC policy. If an incident has already been reported to the Title IX office, the RJ Center staff can convene an appropriate process for people or communities who are in need. We recommend that anyone who is affiliated with UC Berkeley should contact the PATH-to-Care Center prior to initiating an RJ process around an incident of SVSH.