We now have a new model of mediation – restorative. I developed the 46 hour course, and taught and trained with other faculty to an inaugural class of 24 participants, who graduated January 1, 2020, including Judge Oleisky, attorneys, mediators, restorative practitioners, psychologists, doctors, teachers, family members, professionals and consumers. We now have a small platoon to put to work.
Family Innocence’s Restorative Justice Circle Mediation model is adapted from world renowned peacemaker, Dominic Barter’s, restorative circle process. I studied with Dominic in 2012, after being introduced to circles by Judge Bruce Peterson, who had studied with Dominic years earlier. Since then, I have worked to implement Dominic’s peacemaking dialogue in the family community. Family innocence facilitates communication among family members and participants in circle by implementing a listening exercise, and use of a talking piece and peacemaking dialogue, where everyone can speak and be heard (not just the words), closing the circle with written agreed actions. We provide a community of two co-facilitators and a volunteer family innocence advocate to support family members.
The restorative justice circle process ultimately teaches participants a method of communication that can be implemented anywhere in their lives and resolve any conflicts peacefully. We need funding to edit and publish the 46 hour class so that we can train others and share this peace-making alternative with the world. To donate , call 651-783-5878. Thank you for your support!
by Michelle L. MacDonald, attorney & advisor with MacDonald Law Firm, LLC. is
Founder and Volunteer President of Family Innocence, a non-profit project dedicated to keeping families out of the adversary process: resolving conflicts and injustices peacefully through Mediation, Restorative practices & Family Circles.
Michelle can be reached at: Michelle@FamilyInnocence.com or by cell phone at 612-554-0932