News Release: Citizens For Uprooting Racism in Bermuda (CURB) – For the last 3 years CURB has been quietly training members of the public as Restorative Practitioners and to date nearly 200 people have been trained by a local Licensed Trainer under the auspices of the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP www.iirp.edu).
The two-day IIRP workshops are run every two months and become full almost as soon as they are announced. What is causing the buzz in the community about Restorative Practices? What is it about this methodology that have people so excited?
Those trained come from all walks of life, educators, police officers, members of the Department of Corrections, faith communities, non-profit/charity workers, lawyers, social workers and those who work in the criminal justice system. However, for most of the public the terms Restorative Practices or Restorative Justice means very little, and so CURB has arranged for a senior educator and expert from the IIRP to give a free public presentation on Restorative Practices.
The guest presenter Koury Cook, an expert in the criminal justice field, joined the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) in 2015 as a full-time instructor for the Continuing Education Unit.
Koury specializes in working with leadership to support large scale implementation of Restorative Practices across a wide variety of systems. Before working with the IIRP, Koury spent 15 years in law enforcement serving youth and families within the juvenile justice system at Northampton County (Pennsylvania) Juvenile Justice Center (NCJJC).
Koury founded the Northampton County Juvenile Gang Intelligence Unit and during that time was part of a Federal Gang Task Force under the direction of then U.S Attorney General Gonzales.
He earned a Master of Science in Restorative Practices from the International Institute for Restorative Practices (IIRP) Graduate School in 2019 and continues this work with systems around world.
The presentation entitled Restorative Practices – Strengthening and Healing a Community will be held at Somersfield Academy on Wednesday 13th November from 6:30 – 8:30 pm. The presentation will provide an overview of Restorative Practices, how it’s being applied across systems worldwide and why it is being recognized as the leading change agent through its ability to strengthen relationships, build community and heal harm.
Questions that will be answered include what were its origins, who uses it, how it works, what research is it based on, and most importantly what are the outcomes when used in the criminal justice system and education system and why is it so successful?
In addition to Koury’s presentation, a panel discussion will be held with 4 Bermudian Restorative Practitioners who will provide their experiences on the introduction of restorative practices into their organizations/schools and the outcomes they have witnessed with both children and adults. There will be an opportunity for attendees to ask questions at the end of the presentation and panel discussion.
At the invitation of CURB, Koury will be training 12 locals as IIRP Licensed Trainers able to bring Restorative Practices to their organizations in a cost-effective way. CURB would like to thank the Bermuda Community Foundation for their grant towards the costs of this training, the Bank of Bermuda Foundation for their support of CURB’s racial justice work, the Human Rights Commission for providing a location for the Restorative Practices training, and Somersfield Academy for providing the location for Koury Cook’s presentation on Restorative Practices.
Citizens Uprooting Racism in Bermuda (CURB)