GOLETA, Calif. -- The Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office announced on Friday that it has developed a Neighborhood Restorative Justice Program in the Goleta Valley, and it is looking for volunteers to participate in the program.
The Goleta Neighborhood Restorative Justice Program was developed in partnership with the Second District Supervisor's Office and is a community-driven, pre-filing diversion program designed to divert low-level misdemeanor offenses from entering the criminal justice system, according to the DA's Office.
People who commit low-level misdemeanors will be given an opportunity to repair some of the harm they caused through a community-based process using restorative justice principles instead of the courtroom, the DA's Office said.
The DA's Office is looking for community panelists and facilitators who will be trained in restorative justice principles and participate in leading the conferences.
The volunteers will be trained in leading the conference and will guide the program participants through a step-by-step restorative process, according to the DA's Office.
Community volunteers should work or live in the Goleta Valley and meet the following requirements:
- Complete the application
- A Live-Scan fingerprinting and criminal record check (Immigrant status is irrelevant and will not be checked.)
- No recent felonies or misdemeanors
- Complete volunteer facilitator and panelist training
- Have lived in Goleta Valley for 3 years (1 year if a student)
- Two-year time commitment (1 year if students)
- Bilingual/bicultural Spanish/English volunteers are highly encouraged
Click here for more information, or email the program at SBDANeighborhoodRJP@co.santa-barbara.ca.us.