6 Mar 2007

Restorative justice programme expanded in CNMI

2:13 pm on 6 March 2007

Prison Fellowship International has expanded its restorative justice programme in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas, focusing not only on prisoners but also the victims of crime.

PFI services director, Graeme Taylor, says the programme was started nine years ago but has only recently been introduced on Saipan.

He told the Saipan Tribune the programme aims to help prisoners understand the results of crime on victims and the community, and to agree to take responsibility for their actions and begin making amends by taking part in an act of symbolic restitution.

He said part of the programme involves holding panel discussions with both offenders and victims.

The participants are not directly involved in each other's case.

The Prison Fellowship programme, which began in 1979, now has membership in 110 countries.

In Micronesia, the programme is being implemented in the CNMI, Guam, and Palau.