How Can Community Safety Be Created?

Restorative Justice Week is coming up during the third week of November – and gives Canadians a chance to learn more about the restorative approach to crime, community safety and conflict.

Here on Salt Spring, the Restorative Justice Group has been running for over 20 years – and offers a community-based alternative to the justice system and to resolving conflicts.

Run by trained volunteers, the program has supported hundreds of people to repair the harm they have created and make amends to people and relationships. This helps to build a safer and more respectful community and keeps cases out of the courts at the same time.

The program also helps neighbours and others resolve conflicts.

As part of Restorative Justice Week, the local program will host two community talking circles on the topic of “community safety”.

In light of the upcoming CRD counter-petition process that proposes to create a new community safety service, restorative justice asks the question: “What does safety mean, and what are the best ways to create safety for everyone?”

There are a variety of thoughts and feelings on this topic, and the circle format is a good way to listen and learn respectfully to a variety of responses. It’s also a good chance to learn about this issue to be ready to vote in the counter-petition process.

Everyone is welcome to join these open circles on either Sat. Nov, 16 (3 pm – 5 pm) or Thurs, Nov 21 (7 pm – 9 pm) in the Library Program room.

For more information, please contact Darlene Gage at


Free workshop on Sunday, April 7, 10 am to 1 pm at the Salt Spring Island Public Library in the Community Room.

Circles bring people together to foster deep listening and speaking from the heart to gain mutual understanding. 

They are used for decision making, problem solving and conflict resolution in schools, workplaces and families.  

Join us to learn and share this practice.


November is a month when there are several days dedicated to peace and harmony and it includes Restorative Justice Week, from Nov 18-25th, a time to increase understanding of Restorative Justice.

To promote awareness, Restorative Justice Salt Spring Island invites you to ‘Peace Circles in the Library’, every Tuesday in November from 12 noon to 1 pm in the Public Library Program Room.  It is a free event. The facilitators for each week will be:

Nov 6: Peter Levitt

Nov 13: Barbara Slater & Kevin Wilkie

Nov 20: Heather Martin

Nov 27: Aaron Kipnis

Come and participate!

Peace Circles Poster

Restorative Justice Week, Nov 18 -25, 2018

Restorative Justice Week will be held in Canada, and throughout the world, from November 18-25, 2018. The theme for the week is Inspiring Innovation.

Restorative Justice Week aims to raise awareness of restorative justice approaches to crime. It is an annual event that runs nationally during the third week of November.

Read about National Restorative Justice Week, by visiting the Ministry of Justice’s Community Safety and Crime Prevention website and the Correctional Service of Canada’s Restorative Justice website.

What is Restorative Justice?

Find out more about Restorative Justice, and how it can help your business, your school, and  your community to repair the harm done by crime.

Open House, Saturday, Nov 18, 2017

10:00 am to 11:30 am (drop in for a chat)

11:30 am – Short Presentation

Salt Spring Library Program Room

Annual General Meeting, Vancouver Island Restorative Justice Association

The 2017 Annual General Meeting of the Vancouver Island Restorative Justice Association will be held on Saturday, October 14, 2017 at the Cowichan Exhibition Park 5 km north of Duncan. The AGM will start at 10 AM and finish at 3 PM. Topics will include “Forgiveness and Restorative Justice”, “Elder Abuse and Restorative Justice” and “Restorative Justice at Dalhousie University Dental School”

An Evening with Gordon Sloan

How can we change from a divisive community into a cooperative, supportive community? We are plagued with incessant infighting and hostility over almost every issue that arises. Why are we battling each other so fiercely? How can we discuss things peacefully and resolve our issues to our mutual satisfaction? How can we start working together, communicating in positive ways with each other, rather than addressing issues through personal attacks and vituperative displays? What role can the media play?

The Salt Spring Island Restorative Justice program, which works to bring consensual agreements between perpetrators of minor legal offences and those affected by their actions, is interested in seeing if its approach can be applied to community disputes. So we’ve invited top mediator and former islander Gordon Sloan to talk about how we might discuss issues publicly in a cooperative and supportive fashion rather than the often confrontational, belligerent fashion we’ve become accustomed to.

One of the founders of the SSI RJ program, Gordon’s interests in dispute resolution range from working with individuals to large corporations, governments and First Nations. He is fascinated by the role people’s values and group identity play in conflict resolution. Gordon’s intervention practice includes facilitation of value-charged conflicts, workplace advice and assessment, multi-party cases in the public policy arena, and a full array of litigation mediation.

Gordon currently teaches negotiation and mediation courses to a wide array of audiences. He provides training programs and seminars in dispute resolution. Gordon’s presentation will be interactive so bring your concerns and questions. If you would like more information about Gordon Sloan, refer to his company website

Gordon’s talk will take place on Monday, October 27, in the Salt Spring Library’s Program Room at 7:15. Admission is free but seating is limited, so come early.

For more information on SSI Restorative Justice, please visit our website. The Restorative Justice program is hoping to facilitate future dispute resolutions in the community in the hope of solving problems without the hostility of the past.