First Nations Justice Strategy
The First Nations Justice Strategy (FNJS) is a community based program that provides quality, confidential restorative justice, and mediation services with professionalism, respect, and dedication to the wellness of our community. your commitment guarantees the success of the program.
Southern Chiefs’ Organization (SCO) seeks to reclaim some resemblance of traiditonal Indigenous practices of justice for our clients. our mandate is to reduce the number of individuals in contact with the criminal justice system, while acknowledging and recognition that our justice strategy is confined within that same justice system. Our goal is to provide our community members with an alternative experience of justice than what is currently being offered. It is one small step towards reclaiming jurisdiction over justice for our communities. The FNJS attempts to incorporate the seven traditional values: wisdom, love, respect, bravery, honesty, restoration, prevention, and empowerment for the individuals, there and the community.
The FNJS has dedicated Community Justice Workers (CJWs) in five Manitoba First Nation Communities: Sagkeeng, Pinaymootang, Waywayseecappo, Pine Creek and Long Plain. (subject to change)
The CJWs main focus is on repairing the harm. The CJW will meet with the person/families harmed as well as the person in conflict with the law.
The CJW facilitates and maintains a Community Justice Committee (CJC). CJC members are called on for their knowledge, respect, and wisdom. CJC members ar enot a judge or a jury. The CJC makes every effort to understand the underlying issues that led to the misbehaviour.
An agreement is made with a commitment from the offender on how the harm will be restored. The CJC monitors the agreement and upon completion, reports back to the referral source (Crown, RCMP, Probation Services, etc). Victims are given a voice during the process.
Court: These are called Diversionary Referrals. Youth and adults may participate. Cases may be referred by the Crown or a Judge.
Police: The local Police Detachment can refer clients to the FNJS. These referrals are usually done prior to any charges being laid, and therefore bypass the whole court system. These are called Pre-charge referrals.
The Community: Probation officers and other community organizations may utilize the FNJS for mediation or other restorative processes. These kinds of referrals are particularly helpful when action needs to be taken, but the person or people harmed do not want the formality of court action.