Restorative Justice and The Power of All

By | May 6, 2016

When speaking of Diversity Matters’ Diversity Works: the Power of All. A community based venue for exchanging ideas, information and opportunities, we often stress the benefits of round the room facilitated exchanges to build linkages between organizations and the communities they serve and to allow the organization to learn about the cultures that exist in their communities. As I often stress that diversity and inclusion management is always about meeting the needs of the individual and the organization, this becomes a chance also for the communities we serve to also learn about the culture and operations of our organizations and institutions as well.
Another application of Diversity works the power of all is as a component of Restorative Justice. According to the Ohio Peace Officer’s Training Academy (OPOTA), Diversity encourages sensitivity: The ability to consider the feelings of others and address people in a respectful and non-offensive manner.
In this context, Diversity Works: The Power Of All, can be a valuable tool. While often, Diversity and Inclusion focuses on Differences. It is essential to learn to work with and appreciate cultures different than your own. Often, in that pursuit, we fail to recognize and embrace the similarities we share. In the absence of this recognition of our similarities and acknowledgement of our shared humanity, empathy is not possible.
In order for restorative justice to occur, we cannot just simply mete out punishment for acts of discrimination or violence targeting a community or a member of a community. It is essential that the perpetrator, understands and feels the impact of their actions.
By participating in Diversity Works: The power of All, both parties in a conflict can come closer to this appreciation in a safe space with moderated conversation. Both perpetrator and victim, can gain valuable insights into one another’s reality by exploring culture, rituals, values, even food, music and art.
By simply sharing physical proximity and engaging in conversation over food and drink, a great deal of learning and relationship building is possible.