The most fundamental of the Detroit Justice Center (DJC) three prongs will be its community legal services practice. The center will work on behalf of criminal-justice involved individuals, free of charge, to remove barriers that prevent them from becoming full citizens, like a warrant or suspended driver’s license.
Why are our jails overcrowded in the first place? How many in there can’t make bail? How many are there because of underlying issues like homelessness or substance abuse or mental health issues?
For the cost of one jail we could design 30 restorative justice wraparound service centers at every corner of the city.
As part of its economic equity practice, the DJC will also provide affordable legal services to community organizations, cooperatives, and other initiatives that support or are led by returning citizens.
And then there is the third prong: promoting just city initiatives. Alexander wants to make Detroit the nation’s first “Restorative Justice City”—a movement started out of Oakland, California by Designing Justice + Designing Spaces which utilizes architecture, design, and real estate development to address the root causes of mass incarceration.
Read the full article on restorative justice by Aaron Mondry at Model D
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