Restorative Justice: RSVP
RSVP: Model For Implementation
What if time spent in jail is used for rehabilitative and restorative purposes?
- People who have committed violent crimes eventually complete their sentences and return to our communities
- Our prison system focuses on punishment rather than restoration
- Re-arrest rate is high (92% for nonviolent re-arrests and 33% for violent re-arrests) (Gilligan and Lee).
- Human costs of incarceration are high (unemployment, family structure fragmentation, additions, denial of civil rights after incarceration, etc)
- Cost to taxpayers is high ($47,000 per prisoner per year in Massachusetts)
Resolve to Stop Violence Project-- a program of peer-led psychodynamic/cognitive behavioral therapy which seeks to address cognitive distortions, grow empathy, and enable a stronger sense of control -- aspects of one's inner life that can contribute to violence towards others
Components of RSVP include:
- ManAlive--peer-led cognitive behavioral therapy calling attention to cognitive distortions such as the "male role belief system"
- Vitim's Impact -contact with people who have been victimized by violent crime as a mechanism for increasing empathy and for holding men accountable for crimes
- Drama Program -- emphasizes a sense of control
- Community Restoration -- provides opportunities for volunteer work/job skills/improves reality-based self esteem and coping skills
- Addictions Counseling
- The men reside in a 62-bed direct supervision dormitory and participate in programming for 12 hours per day, 6 days a week