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Aboriginal Justice Program
One People, One History, One Voice
The MCPEI Aboriginal Justice Program (AJP) began in 2003 and works to create an environment that allows Aboriginal people to self-administer justice by building a traditional justice system based on holistic community values. The purpose of the program is to develop and maintain sustainable justice support system for all Aboriginal people involved in the PEI Justice System. The program focuses on the process of helping offenders, victims, and communities get to the root of the issues that led to the crime(s) being committed.
The program enables positive growth and mutual respect in Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities in Prince Edward Island. The program improves and strengthens the understanding of each other’s uniqueness through both training and cross-cultural sharing. The program has helped build a better future for all Aboriginal people by facilitating ownership, responsibility, accountability, and respect.
The aim of the program is to provide community based alternatives to deal with crime. The program seeks to involve the community in creating dispositions for the offender that satisfy the victim and the community. The outcome is to find a healing plan that does not in itself create the conditions for offenders to fail. Participants in the program will focus on creating conditions that are doable. The process also ensures that proper resources are in place for each condition to be complete.
The objectives of the Aboriginal Justice Program are:
- to provide legal support services to all Aboriginal people living in Prince Edward Island;
- to communicate with Aboriginal organizations, communities, individuals, identified key stakeholders, and Provincial and Federal Governments for the improvement of the administration of justice for Aboriginal people;
- to research and develop justice programs which will initiate change for the betterment of all parties;
- to promote and create justice programs which will meet the changing and growing needs of Aboriginal people living in Prince Edward Island;
- to develop a network among the First Nations, justice forums and mainstream justice programs; and
- to decrease the percentage of repeat offences and the number of Aboriginals going through the criminal justice system.
Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee Role and Responsibility
The main purpose of the Advisory Committee is to advise the Director of Aboriginal Justice in planning, developing and evaluating the Aboriginal Justice Program that meet the needs of all Aboriginal people on PEI.
The Advisory Committee can benefit the Aboriginal Justice Program by helping to ensure that educational programming is aligned with Aboriginal needs; reinforcing networking opportunities with stakeholder groups; and by providing a source of informed advocates for the program
The role and responsibility of the Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee includes:
- Advising the Director of Aboriginal Justice on the need for and relative priority of specific areas within Aboriginal Justice Program
- Providing input to the work plan, budget, and proposal
- Advising on the content and structure of the Aboriginal Justice Program
- Assisting with Aboriginal Justice Program evaluation
- Developing awareness, understanding and support for the Aboriginal Justice Program to the public, Aboriginal communities, funders, and public decision makers
- Providing local knowledge, relevant background and or expertise that relate to Aboriginal justice issues
- Participating in discussion at committee meetings
- Providing recommendations to the Director of Aboriginal Justice for consideration
- Communicating through the Aboriginal Justice Coordinator
The role and responsibility of the Director of Aboriginal Justice includes:
- Ensuring that the Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee and individual committee members are aware of the areas the program will address
- Providing orientation to the Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee, especially to new members on the Committee
- Supporting the Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee to function effectively
The Aboriginal Justice Program Advisory Committee is not involved in day-to-day operational and management issues. The Director of Aboriginal Justice is accountable to the Mi'kmaq Confederacy Board.
How can we help you?
- Provide support and talk to you about your situation
- Provide culturally based justice alternatives (circle process)
- Provide education workshops for youth and adults
- Provides referrals for services to Aboriginals
- Help communities become more involved in the justice process
- Increase your knowledge and understanding about the justice system.