Justice Reform

Our justice reform work is focused on improving awareness about the concentric circles of harm caused by wrongful convictions, on increasing support and services for those who are harmed, and on preventing future harm. In this work, we collaborate with police, prosecutors, judges, victim advocates, service providers, the media, and others to change practices and policies.

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A signature program of our justice reform work are our Listening Sessions. These sessions create opportunities for harmed individuals to provide their humanizing voice to motivate systemic change. The “listeners” are typically criminal justice officials and policymakers who, through hearing the experience of these underserved populations, are better informed about gaps in services and needed reforms to prevent future harm. Healing Justice hosts Listening Sessions across the country and in collaboration with various stakeholders, such as for example the US Department of Justice and the national Innocence Network.

Healing Justice provides other opportunities for harmed individuals to have their voices heard and to participate in justice reform through presentations aimed at raising awareness and through professional trainings tailored for specific agencies or jurisdictions. We provide presentations and trainings to stakeholder organizations across the country, such as for example the National Crime Victims Law Institute, the National Association of Victim Assistance in Corrections, and the National Association of Social Work. We also provide specialized technical assistance and support to individual agencies.

As part of our reform work, we received a grant from the US Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime to create resources for better serving crime victims and survivors around exonerations.

Testimonials from police, prosecutors, victim advocates:

“This was a wake up call about a topic I had not heard anything about. Realized all law enforcement need education and awareness in this area.”

“Speakers were so compelling and conveyed their feelings so well that it is always good to be reminded about the impact on real people of this work.”

“This program opened my eyes to the harm caused when victims are not contacted/informed about updates/progress in their case. I see now it is re-victimization when we do not do our job and communicate with them. We cannot take their power away and I did not think about that aspect prior to this program. So thank you!”

“As a new DA this was very instructive about the human impact of post-conviction proceedings on families.”

“Hearing first person narratives from victims was very powerful.”

“This was a powerful reminder of our purpose in serving victims and our continuing duty to them. Thank you!”