Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office and partners sponsor trainings and events on restorative justice practices

Press release from the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office:

The Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office along with co-sponsors Buncombe County Schools, Western Carolina Rescue Ministries, United Way of Buncombe County, Asheville City Schools and the Justice Resource Advisory Council are bringing together key stakeholders in the criminal justice system for a series of trainings and public events on restorative justice practices from Dec. 12-14.

The trainings and events will be led by SaulPaul, a two-time TEDx Talk Presenter and Award Winning Musician, Speaker and Author; and Bianca Neal, a Restorative Justice Award Winning Filmmaker and Facilitator.

On Thursday, from 12:30-2 p.m. at the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office, a session for stakeholders across the criminal justice system will be held to “learn what restorative justice is, how to work together to advocate for restorative practices throughout your city and how to co-produce restorative systems within governmental agencies, law enforcement, schools and the community at large. In addition, all participants will learn how to address cultural understanding, race, and equity by using the restorative practices to break down barriers of assumptions” according the the description of the training.

This is just one of a series of trainings that will take place on Thursday and Friday geared toward law enforcement and stakeholders in the criminal justice system.

“This is a great opportunity for our community to learn more about restorative practices.The goal of this training is for attendees to learn how to build authentic relationships across systems that create a culture of understanding, collaboration, and shared decision making. The members of the Justice Resource Advisory Council are grateful to all those who help bring these trainings to Buncombe County,” says Tiffany Iheanacho, Justice Resource Coordinator for Buncombe County.

Members of the Justice Resource Advisory Council include County Commissioners, Judges, the D.A., Sheriff, Public Defender, the Chief Magistrate and others. The Justice Resource Advisory Council is designed to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the Buncombe County criminal justice system — thereby maximizing public safety and increasing community wellness.

“As we work toward implementing 21st Century Policing at the Buncombe County Sheriff’s Office, I’m excited for this opportunity to engage with our JRAC group and discuss what restorative practices can look like in our community. And we also want to bring these ideas directly to our community by having a public festival for our young people and families to enjoy as they learn about these ideas,” says Sheriff Quentin Miller.

On Dec. 14 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Be The Change Festival will take place at Asheville Middle School. The event is free and open to the public. This family-oriented  festival will feature interactive hands-on learning exhibits, live musical performances, games, delicious food, DJs, and more.

The first 300 people who register on EventBrite will receive a free gift. Members of the public can register for the festival at this link


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