Embracing Conflict with Restorative Circles
Our common response to conflict is punitive and retributive. It fosters emotion and anxiety. It sustains fixed positions and makes us blind for the perspective of our opponent. Dominic Barter developed a restorative justice model that does just the opposite: it embraces conflict. It accepts it as a regular recurring, normal phenomenon and moves towards it, instead of away.
A Restorative Circle is a community process supporting those in conflict. It brings together the three parties to a conflict –the “actor”, “the receiver” (the one directly impacted) and the wider community– to dialogue as equals.
Restorative Circles are facilitated in 3 stages:
- During the pre-circle a facilitator from within the community talks with each individual involved to identify the key factors and participants in the conflict.
- The circle is a dialogical process in which receiver, actor and community open up to other perspectives and try to find agreed actions.
- The post-circle investigates the well-being of all participants.
Perspectivity offers the opportunity to follow a training in facilitating Restorative Circles. Goal of this 2-day training is to let participants understand the Restorative System in such a way they can (in principle) be facilitators themselves.
Read the flyer (Dutch only, pdf)