Most states now have legislation that endorses restorative justice. This episode explores questions such as: How important is legislation for restorative justice implementation? What can legislation provide? How does it limit or ensure best practice? What advocacy is needed to promote policy change? How can restorative justice practitioners and programs collaborate to have greater political influence?
Teiahsha Bankhead, Ph.D., LCSW, is a social justice activist, a restorative justice advocate, a licensed psychotherapist and a professor with both MSW and Ph.D. degrees in social welfare from the University of California, Berkeley. Born to a Black radical mother during the uprising of the Watts Rebellion and coming of age in South Central Los Angeles during the embittered racial relations and social unrest of the civil rights era ignited within Dr. Bankhead a passionate commitment to social justice advocacy and transformative community empowerment. Dr. Bankhead has a commitment to racial justice, racial healing and restorative economics. She has taught racial, gender and sexual orientation diversity, theories of criminal behavior, and US social policy at the undergraduate and graduate levels. She speaks and holds circle on the subjects of School-Based Restorative Justice, Race and Restorative Justice, the Indigenous Roots of Restorative Justice, Social Justice and Restorative Justice, Truth-Telling and Racial Healing, Youth-Led and Movement-Based Restorative Justice, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, Mass Incarceration, and Restorative Cities.
Ames Stenson hails from Denver, Colorado and their family tree has been rooting on stolen land in the west since the 1700s. Ames currently serves as the program manager with the City of Englewood, CO Municipal Court Restorative Justice Program; the board president for the Colorado Coalition for Restorative Justice Practices; a founding board member of the Restorative Rainbow Alliance; previously served as the National Association of Community and Restorative Justice’s online programming coordinator and recently retired from seven years of teaching as an Adjunct Faculty member at the University of Denver’s Graduate School of Social Work. They have a bachelor’s in Criminal Justice, a master’s in Theological Studies and a master’s in Social Work and consider themselves to be a lifelong learner. Ames loves spending time with their family, Kyla and Russ, and doing all-things-fun from travel to sports to geocaching – it’s a yes!