…we are all more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.
Bryan Stevenson. Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative
My guest for this episode is Melanie G. Snyder, author of Grace Goes to Prison who works on issues of restorative justice and prisoner re-entry. You can find out more information about her and her work at www.melaniegsnyder.com.
One of the core ideas of her work is “prison as a last resort” and that forms the theme for this interview, and how restorative justice, and rehabilitation and treatment programs impact in a positive way the people and communities who use these options. I see this conversation as an important way for permaculture practitioners to apply what we know, especially among those with sociology, psychology, law, or criminal justice backgrounds, to engage the system that exists and create a better world that values all the people who are a part of it.
This very candid conversation touches on a number of stories of people from my life impacted by the criminal justice system. Melanie’s work and this conversation matter to me, and from speaking with many other people it matters to them, too, because of their loved ones who could have been saved if other options existed. Listen if you know anyone who has ever had a negative interaction with the law and consider how implementing restorative justice and re-entry programs in your community help create a better world.
Work like Melanie’s is important for breaking us out of the mold of current thinking and shows that other systems are possible. We don’t live in an unchangeable machine, we’re not cogs or sprockets. We are part of a dynamic living system and we can change it to be more kind, more peaceful, and more beneficial to all.
The Four Questions of Restorative Justive
- Who has been harmed by a crime?
- What are their needs?
- Who should be accountable for addressing the needs and harms that were caused by the crime?
- What can be done to address the harm?
Melanie G. Snyder
The Center for Community Peacemaking
Lancaster County RMO
Restorative Justice Online
National Association of Community and Restorative Justice
The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander
Melanie’s TedX Talk: Breaking Out of Prison Thinking
- Practical Possibilities with Ethan Hughes The interview that introduced me to the idea of restorative justice and circles.
- Nonviolent Communication with Karl Steyaert A way for us to communicate more effectively in our interpersonal relationships, and in conflict resolution and mediation. A useful tool when seeking ways to work through problems and avoid the criminal justice sytem.
Thanks, Brian, from Walking Elephant Theatre Company for joining us to contemplate the following questions:
- What challenges do we face today and how can theatre start to help us address these issues with children?
- How can we use theatre to enrich active, self-empowered learning?
- What are some ways that we can use theatre to help us and our children connect with community?
Sunday, September 7th 1:00-2:00 p.m. (EST)
Thanks, David, from Rites of Passage Experience (ROPE) and The Center for the Advancement of Youth, Family, and Community Services for inspiring us to think about the following:
- What is a healthy, normal transition for children into community?
- What are rites of passage and how have been/are rites of passage experienced in different cultures throughout the world and time?
- What does this mean for what our children need from us as parents/educators the the greater community and what does this mean for what the greater community needs from the children?
Sunday, September 7th 6:00-7:00 p.m. (EST)
Collaborate with other educators and parents from Alternative Education Resource Organization (AERO) on the following questions:
- What does it mean to be a mathematical person?
- What have we, the educators, experienced throughout our lives that have helped us develop a playful attitude and curious nature towards mathematics?
- How can we explore and approach math with children in a way that meets them not only where they are, but also where they are going?
Sunday, September 21st 1:00-2:00 p.m. (EST)
Meet Kelly and educator from Mother Earth School and Marissa, a PERMIE KIDs parent, educator, and founder of PermaCognition who recently attended the Advanced Permaculture for Youth and Child Educators program, and join us for a lively discussion on the following questions:
- What sort of knowledge, concepts, or skills are needed to have a solid foundation as a permaculture youth and child educator?
- What sort of things are integrated into the environment of a permaculture-minded educator?
- How does our own and our shared story influence us as educators and our children? How can we use storytelling as an educational tool?
How can I help you create a better world? Get in touch.
The Permaculture Podcast with Scott Mann
P.O. Box 16
Dauphin, PA 17018