Lincoln Community Dispute Resolution (LCDR), a nonprofit organization that has provided conflict management services to Lincoln County residents for more than 20 years, has been working to implement restorative practices programs in two of Lincoln County’s schools. They have collaborated with the Partnership Against Alcohol & Drug Abuse (PAADA) to develop programs in Eddyville Charter School and Siletz Valley Schools.
Restorative practices are a school community approach to accountability, problem solving, communication, empathy, consensus building, community building, skill building and conflict management.
In recent weeks, students from both schools have served as ambassadors for restorative programs. Siletz student Harmony George spoke to the review committee for Lincoln County’s Nonprofit Social Service Agency Allocations recently in support of LCDR’s application for funding. She informed the committee about the impact of restorative practices on her personally and on her school community. She emphasized the vital need for the program within the school. Her message to the committee was that funding is essential to continue and develop the program for all grades next year.
Eddyville students Maddie Roads and Tucker Smith traveled to Salem, where they testified before the Joint Ways and Means Education Subcommittee about the impact of the restorative justice program they participate in at their school. The committee received in-person testimony on HB 5024, which provides funding to support dispute management services through Community Dispute Resolution Centers such as LCDR.
Roads and Smith explained to the committee how they use restorative concepts and skills to address issues in their school, and they provided personal views on the way restorative practices have created a respectful family environment where people look out for each other. It is a place where people are accountable to each other and to the community and where the community is accountable to the individuals.
The students acknowledged the contribution of the legislature in providing funding for this program, which benefits their school and them personally and asked that funding be continued for community dispute resolution activities. At the conclusion of the hearing, Roads and Smith met committee member and local senator, Arnie Roblan, who indicated that he appreciated what they had to say and invited them to his office for more discussion.