Community Conflict Resolution: Alternative measures and restorative justice as options to adversarial approaches


October 8, 2009 :: Betty Benson
Moderated by

Held from 12:00 - 1:30pm.

In the past few years, alternative dispute resolution approaches have taken their place in the justice system along side more traditional methods, such as litigation through the courts. Mediation and conflict resolution practices bring people together to resolve their disputes rather than facing them off in stressful adversarial processes. The underlying belief is that conflict or anticipated conflict can be managed more effectively through a process that is aimed at the development of understanding among the participants of their respective concerns, needs, beliefs, fears and expectations.
With the help of highly skilled experts through local organizations such as Community Conflict Resolution Services (CCRS), more and more community members are engaging in less confrontational approaches to resolving a wide range of issues and situations, ranging from complaints between neighbours to dealing with young offenders. Benefits of community-based approaches to conflict resolution include the preservation of relationships, avoidance of costly legal action and strengthened coping skills and sense of empowerment for all participants.

Speaker: Betty Lynn-Benson

Betty is the Executive Director of Community Conflict Resolution Services (CCRS) in Lethbridge, Alberta. She has over 10 years experience with RCMP-based victims services programs, and five years as a Restorative Justice Mediator in the Saskatchewan Alternative Measures Program. Betty believes much more can be gained through efforts directed towards healing rather than punishing, and advocates for Alternative Measures programs and Restorative Justice.


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