ensure that pursuant to section 6 of the Canadian Victims Bill of Rights and section 26.1 of the CCRA, processes are in place for providing victims with information on CSC's restorative justice programs and victim-offender mediation services
Participation in the Restorative Opportunities Program and victim-offender mediation services is not intended to have any direct impact on an offender's sentence, CSC decisions and parole decisions. As such:
victim-offender mediation services are confidential
participant, process and outcome information is excluded from case management files and the Offender Management System (OMS)
Restorative Opportunities case files and related information, including Restorative Opportunities consent forms, are managed by the NHQ Restorative Justice Unit.
The Restorative Opportunities Program and victim-offender mediation services are to be provided in a way that effectively manages risk and safety. To this end:
all parties concerned will coordinate efforts to assess and effectively manage risk by disclosing to those with a need to know imminent risk for self-injury or suicide or for causing serious bodily injury or death to other persons.
it is the responsibility of all individuals to bring to the attention of the NHQ
Restorative Justice Unit any safety and security concerns or questions about the Restorative Opportunities Program process.
Appropriate information technology solutions will be provided to Restorative Opportunities Program staff and Mediators to facilitate the secure recording, storing, and communication of Restorative Opportunities case files, offender information and victim information. Such services will include access to:
CSC e-mail accounts to communicate offender and victim information between CSC staff and Restorative Opportunities Mediators
the OMS to review offender and victim file information relevant to case referrals in order to complete victim-offender mediation case assessments and case preparation
the CSC network to store electronic documents
a CSC database where all client and mediation case information can be stored separately from case management files and OMS files.
Community referral: a means for CSC staff to communicate a conditionally released offender's request to initiate any type of communication with the victim.
Institutional referral: a means for CSC staff to communicate an offender's request to initiate any type of communication with the victim.
Restorative Opportunities (RO): a CSC program based on restorative justice principles and values, such as accountability, inclusiveness, honesty, and empathy. RO provides victims, offenders and community members with an opportunity to address the harms caused by crime through victim-offender mediation services. Participation in the RO Program is voluntary for all participants.
Restorative Opportunities (RO) Mediators: community-based mediators specialized in working with people affected by crime. They are employed by CSC on a casual basis and renewed annually (except in the Pacific region, where mediators are provided through a service contract).
Victim-offender mediation (VOM): a communication and mediation process that uses, but is not limited to, letter exchange, video recording exchange, face-to-face meetings, and group conferencing.
Victim referral: a means for victims or victim representatives to communicate/initiate a request on behalf of a victim to enter into communication with the offender who caused him or her harm.