In photo above the six restorative justice parishioners with a guide from Southern Illinois University are flanked by Chief of Police Richard Eddington, right, and youth services worker Patrice Quehl, left.

Earlier this month six restorative justice workers from Norway visited with the Evanston Police Department Youth Services Bureau, Evanston Township High School peer jury members and one  member of the Restorative Justice Evanston Committee. The visitors were a State’s Attorney, a juvenile officer, a police officer from the sheriff’s department, the head master of a school and two restorative justice mediators. 

Arica Barton of the Evanston Police Department’s youth services bureau said, “We were able to provide a lot of information about our programs – they were especially impressed with the peer jury.”

The Evanston restorative justice group learned a great deal about the “progressive justice work being done in Norway.  For instance, in Norway, Restorative Justice mediation is facilitated with youth as well as adults.  In addition, no child under the age of 15 is sent to court or to prison.  Police officers in Norway do not carry guns and do not need to,” Ms. Barton said.

Ms. Barton also said the restorative justice workers in Norway see about 300 cases per year, and the government requires restorative justice is required in all towns by their government.  “It just goes to show how far we have to go to achieve peace in our towns and country,” she added.