Wyoming is working on establishing its first adult restorative justice program. Restorative justice is a method of dealing with a crime that seeks to repair the damage done, rather than just punish the perpetrator, and to give more of a voice to the victim. It often involves a mediated meeting between victim and perpetrator.
There are already restorative justice programs in the state for juvenile offenders. But Victim Services Coordinator, Randi Losalu, says this is the first adult program she knows of in Wyoming.
The Wyoming Board of Parole has approved the establishment of a victim-offender dialog program. The program will create an avenue for perpetrators and victims of a crime to meet in person and talk, which advocates say helps the healing process for both parties.
The Board of Parole’s Victim Services Coordinator, Randi Losalu, says this approach gives victims of crimes more of an opportunity to be heard.
The Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 requires record-keeping of federal agencies’ activities with violent crime occurring in Indian Land. In compliance with the law, the Department of Justice has released a report detailing investigations and prosecutions of violent crimes in tribal communities for 2011 and 2012.
The report says federal efforts to prioritize criminal investigations and prosecutions in Indian Country have led to a 54% increase in that caseload.