Transformative Justice Initiative

Research has shown that the current criminal legal system has not been effective in addressing sexual violence, either in supporting survivors nor holding perpetrators accountable. It has also failed to change the  attitudes that lead to this type of violence. This initiative captures the voices of sexual violence survivors, and relies on their experiences to inform the development of an alternative model of justice. 

Portfolio

Sexual Violence

Funder

Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE)

Partners

Women's Sexual Assault Centre of Renfrew County - JoAnne Brooks and her team & Kim Charlebois, Nneka MacGregor, Shelleena Hackett, Shirley Broekstra, Amanda Hollahan, Nicole Fontyn-Taylor, Karia Jones, Janet Champagne

Transformative Justice Initiative

Research has shown that the current criminal legal system has not been effective in addressing sexual violence, either in supporting survivors nor holding perpetrators accountable. It has also failed to change the  attitudes that lead to this type of violence. This initiative captures the voices of sexual violence survivors, and relies on their experiences to inform the development of an alternative model of justice. 

Portfolio

Sexual Violence

Funder

Department for Women and Gender Equality (WAGE)

Partners

Women's Sexual Assault Centre of Renfrew County - JoAnne Brooks and her team & Kim Charlebois, Nneka MacGregor, Shelleena Hackett, Shirley Broekstra, Amanda Hollahan, Nicole Fontyn-Taylor, Karia Jones, Janet Champagne

There are a variety of sources that we relied on to gather the necessary information we used to ground our work. We call this our “kaleidoscope of data“:

  • Monitoring sexual assault trials in Toronto
  • Auditing decisions in CanLII (Canadian Legal Information Institute)
  • Tracking media discourse through TV, newspapers, social media and more
  • Conducting ethics-approved 1-on-1 interviews with survivors of sexual assault who had gone through the criminal system
  • Facilitating ethics-approved focus groups with survivors of sexual assault who had never reported

    Our research interviews were conducted in two communities - rural (Renfrew County, Ontario) and urban (Toronto, Ontario). 

The first phase of this initiative culminated in our research repot ‘Declarations of Truth: Documenting Insights from Survivors of Sexual Violence’. The report was published in June 2020 as a result of our 3-year research project, funded by WAGE.

What's Next?

We’re developing an online platform that will have resources, geo-located support services, and information on how Transformative Justice works.

We hope to ultimately create a physical Transformative Justice Centre to support survivors in their healing journey, and aggressors in transforming their attitudes.

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