November 20, 2020 – La Tuque, Quebec – Department of Justice Canada and Ministère de la Justice du Québec
Canadians expect to live in a society where the criminal justice system is fair and impartial, responds to the harms caused by crime and helps to keep them safe. An effective justice system encourages meaningful engagement and accountability, and provides an opportunity for healing, reparation and reintegration.
In recognition of Restorative Justice Week (November 15-22), Wednesday, the Honourable David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, announced the Government of Canada’s continued support to restorative justice initiatives across the country. In Quebec, these initiatives also receive a significant and growing support from the Government of Quebec. Today, the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs, on behalf of Minister Lametti as well as Mr. Mathieu Lévesque, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Justice of Québec, on behalf of the latter, met virtually with Atikamekw SIPI – Conseil de la Nation Atikamekw to discuss and highlight their restorative justice programs.
Atikamekw SIPI – Conseil de la Nation Atikamekw is one of the organizations present in Quebec that receive government funding aimed to support restorative justice initiatives. The Department of Justice Canada has committed to providing $322,500 over three years, from 2019 to 2022, to support their restorative justice programs under Justice Canada’s Indigenous Justice Program. The Ministère de la Justice du Québec, who is also providing funding to Atikamekw SIPI – Conseil de la Nation Atikamekw, has already committed to providing 290 770$ over the first two years, but that commitment could reach nearly 450 000$ over three years (from 2019 to 2022).
The Atikamekw community justice process supports adult clients, residing in Manawan or Wemotaci, with the goal of restoring social peace and harmony in the community through a holistic approach that helps to strengthen Atikamekw identity and values, reconnecting and strengthening ties to their community.
The Atikamekw community justice process uses the mediation process especially through the Elder Councils, which consist of 10 members of the Manawan community and 10 members of the Wemotaci community.