Abbotsford Restorative Justice and Advocacy Association‘s (ARJAA) annual general meeting, held last Wednesday in Abbotsford, welcomed guest speaker Dave Gustafson, a leading Canadian voice in the field of restorative justice.
The AGM was attended by about 70 community members, as well as MLA Darryl Plecas, Mayor Bruce Banman, city councillors Patricia Ross and Henry Braun, school board trustee Stan Petersen and Police Chief Bob Rich.
Abbotsford Police Const. Lydia Combow, Const. Jasmine Bader. Const. John Wilcox and Sgt. Casey Vinet were awarded with ARJAA’s Restoring Justice and Peace Award for modelling and advocating for restorative justice principles.
Receiving the organization’s new Restorative and Peaceful Schools’ Award for educators were principals Ian leavings of Abbotsford Middle School, Ryan Colbert of Colleen and Gordie Howe Middle School, Dexter Horton of Clayburn Middle, Reg Gabriel of Eugene Reimer Middle School, and Gerry Goertzen of Abbotsford Christian School.
ARJAA’s 2014/2015 board of directors were elected: chair Gerri Charles; vice-chair Christine Bomhof; treasurer John Pankratz; Bea Foulis, Abbotsford Police Victim Services representative; Insp. Dave Schmirler of the Abbotsford Police Department; Stan Petersen, school board trustee; Annette Vogt, UFV Centre for Safe Schools and Communities; Dave Hilderman; Charlene Ridder; Raymonde Tickner; and Andrew Delmonico.
Also at the AGM, Abbotsford branch manager Lyle McClelland presented a $21,697 grant from Envision Financial First West Foundation in support of ARJAA’s ongoing research and bullying prevention work in local middle schools.