Restorative Justice Society – North Okanagan executive director Margaret Clark is pleased that the program can continue under the wing of CMHA. (Roger Knox/Morning Star file photo)

Restorative Justice Society – North Okanagan executive director Margaret Clark is pleased that the program can continue under the wing of CMHA. (Roger Knox/Morning Star file photo)

Restorative justice joins forces with North Okanagan agency

Canadian Mental Health Association adopts program struggling with financing

Justice is prevailing.

A local program dedicated to restoring peace among youth and those they have harmed is joining forces with a larger agency to combat financial struggles.

In light of funding concerns, Restorative Justice Society (RJS) is teaming up under Vernon’s branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association(CMHA).

“We’ve looked for additional funding sources throughout these years and it’s been an ongoing challenge,” RJS executive director Margaret Clark said.

By taking the program under its wing, CMHA hopes to give RJS the boost it needs to continue the good work being done.

“There’s different grants that we can support the Restorative Justice program with,” CMHA executive director Julia Payson said.

Operating since 2006, RJS has assisted 1,048 persons harmed (victims of crime) in the North Okanagan.

In doing so, they have facilitated 367 agreements which have had an 80 per cent average compliance rate.

“It’s an important program to divert youth from the overtaxed justice system,” Vernon Coun. Kelly Fehr said.

Teaming up with CMHA is a good fit as over the past few years there has been an increase in offences where mental health, substance use and poverty-related issues are associated.

The two agencies are commended for coming together to continue the good work.

“I know a number of societies are struggling right now. It’s very encouraging that you didn’t just throw in the towel,” Coun. Scott Anderson said.

The City of Vernon provides 55 per cent of RJS’s funding, which will be transferred to CMHA.

“Our hopes are that with the added infrastructure, that we can continue to make it robust,” said Payson.

READ MORE: 30 Vernon arts and athletics organizations see $700K boost

READ MORE: ‘None of this gets in God’s way’: Vernon church


@VernonNews
jennifer@vernonmorningstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Criminal JusticeLaw & Justice

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The historic Leir House building run by the Penticton and District Art Council was vandalized, with glass smashed and graffiti placed on the porch and wall. (Facebook)
Penticton Arts Council looking for help after Leir House vandalized

Glass was smashed and graffiti placed on the historic building

The regional district’s Penticton offices. (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
Building and bylaw service up in 2020 for RDOS

More complaints were resolved and building permits issued in 2020 than 2019

The next Canadian census will be held in May, 2021. The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen is urging its residents to complete the census form online. (Statistics Canada)
Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen urges participation in census

National census will be held in May, 2021 with COVID-19 protocols in place

Medical chief of staff Dr. Brad Raison of Penticton Regional Hospital and John Moorhouse of the Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation look over one of the rooms in the David E. Kampe Tower in 2017 while the tower was under construction. (Western News File)
After 46 years in media, Moorhouse retires

John Moorhouse spent the last six years with the South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation

The BC SPCA is adapting its fundraising after cancelling events due to COVID-19 restrictions. (Twila Amato - Black Press Media)
BC SPCA gets creative with fundraising as pandemic continues

The non-profit’s in-person fundraising events all had to be cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns after searing report into workplace culture: reports

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

City of West Kelowna mowing services have been moved in house, saving the city from a potential quarter-million dollar increase in costs. (Pixabay)
West Kelowna cuts mowing contract, saves over $200k

Since forming in 2007, the City of West Kelowna has been contracting out their mowing services

Copper Mountain Mine is Princeton’s largest employer, with approximately 460 workers. Spotlight file photo.
Princeton Copper Mountain Mine worker tests positive for COVID

Town’s largest employer stresses its commitment to safe practices

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

A Vernon man's faith in humanity has been restored since his lost wallet was returned, credit cards, cash and all, to the RCMP station. (Contributed)
Good Samaritan turns in cash-filled wallet to Vernon Mounties

Owner’s faith in humanity restored following a tough few weeks

The top part of the fossil burrow, seen from the side, with feathery lines from the disturbance of the soil – thought to be caused by the worm pulling prey into the burrow. (Paleoenvironntal Sediment Laboratory/National Taiwan University)
PHOTOS: SFU researchers find evidence of ‘giant’ predatory worms on ocean floor

Fossils found the prove the existence of an ancient Taiwanese worm as long as two metres

Most Read