Building Safer Ground – A Restorative Process

MRJC’s Building Safer Ground process may be an option, other than, or in addition to the criminal justice program, when abuse occurs within a family.  We can help your family to dialogue about these sensitive issues.

This service can benefit:

  • vulnerable adults;
  • couples within a relationship who are at low to medium risk for continued abuse, and/or;
  • situations where harm has caused family breakdown, and reconciliation is a desired consideration.

Building Safer Ground is a process that allows constructive dialogue to happen. It is designed for families at risk to harm or violence.  It is available to anyone who is:

  • in an intimate relationship -- married, living together or co-parenting after a separation, and/or;
  • families who are struggling with issues such as parental care and/or elder abuse.

The Building Safer Ground process allows you and your family to:

  • talk directly about harmful behaviour;
  • explore what harm looks like for each involved person;
  • talk about the impact of harmful actions;
  • talk about responsibility for actions;
  • examine choices made to use violence when experiencing conflict, anger or frustration;
  • explore the possibility of making other choices, and;
  • to encourage personal accountability for actions taken towards harmed persons.



Building Safer Ground is a voluntary and confidential process that provides an opportunity to meet in a safe place, with highly skilled restorative practice facilitators. As with any restorative process, it is necessary for participants to be willing to take accountability for their harmful behaviours, and for them to openly discuss the impact of these behaviours on others.

You can expect to be treated with respect, and your issues will be the focus of the discussion. The facilitators will help participants to decide on goals for the discussion and establish outcomes.  Please note that the Building Safer Ground process is flexible and it can be adapted to meet the needs of different cultures.

Face-to-face meetings are usually arranged by our restorative practice facilitators, but only when you are ready, and only if you choose. The focus of the first meeting is on what is happening in the relationship, and the impacts of any actions which have been harmful.

If there are legal barriers to your participation in a Building Safer Ground process, you may require permission from the Courts before a face-to-face meeting can occur.

What are the benefits to participating in the Building Safer Ground process?

  1. Participants set goals and contribute to outcomes in a safe and respectful process.
  2. It provides an opportunity for participants to ask questions, talk constructively and to gain insight into the other person and their behaviour.
  3. It helps participants to gain a better understanding of the harm committed and its impact.
  4. It is an opportunity to accept responsibility for actions, and be held accountable.
  5. It is a chance to repair the harm caused.
  6. Ultimately, it helps to create families that feel safer together and makes for a safer community to live in.

To learn more about the Building Safer Ground process, you can contact us at 780-423-0896 or Request Services via email.