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THROUGH A RELATIONAL LENS with Rupert Ross
Rupert Ross, retired prosecutor for Ontario Attorney General, relates key features of his personal inquiry into justice as a healing experience. He explains a paradigmatic shift of perspective and adopts what he calls a relational lens of explanation. A relational lens examines relationships more than individuals and reveals a more inclusive way of doing justice. More importantly, Ross notes, through a relational lens, most injustices and justice procedures create a new and sudden relationship that requires careful restorative work based on sharing, kindness, humility and respect.
Rupert Ross’ primary responsibility with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General was conducting criminal prosecutions in Kenora, Ontario and over twenty remote fly-in Aboriginal communities in Northwestern Ontario. Rupert’s secondary responsibilities included making the criminal justice system more responsive to the present day needs and cultural traditions of Aboriginal people and gaining expertise in restorative justice processes. He worked with the Federal Aboriginal Justice Directorate for three years, travelling across Canada examining Aboriginal approaches to crime, with special emphasis on healing programs for victims, offenders, families and communities.