Instead of punishment, we need to build communities that where all young people can get healing, accountability and support. In Restorative Justice, you have the opportunity to have your story understood, and you can begin to repair relationships and harm that you have caused.
Restorative Justice helps everyone- youth, families, community members and people who've been harmed in the community.
Restorative Justice reduces the harm and disempowerment caused by the criminal justice system.
What is it?
When harm has happened, we get people together for meetings with young people who have caused harm, the people who have been hurt and supporters. We have conversations in these meetings to understand what happened and how everyone was affected. Then, we make a plan to reduce the harm and support the young person with what they need.
These meetings are called “circles” or “conferences” and they are helpful in reducing future harm, and building a sense of understanding, healing and relief. Restorative Justice is an alternative to punishment.
Who can use your program?
Our youth justice program is for young people ages 9-18 who have caused harm in their community by doing something that was against the law. Our goal is to keep young people in their community without criminal charges on their record. We currently serve anyone in York, Cumberland, Androscoggin, Oxford and Kennebec Counties.
Who can request a Restorative Justice Circle?
Anyone can make a referral. This includes: parents, JCCOS, police officers, teachers, school administrators or service providers. Self referrals are also welcome from victims or from people who caused harm.