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November 13, 2009
Focus on bullying, restorative justice
SFU’s Centre for Restorative Justice will host Suman and Manjit Virk, the parents of murdered teen Reena Virk, at a public event on campus on Friday, Nov. 20 in the Academic Quadrangle 3150, 2:30-5:30 p.m., as part of Bullying Awareness and Restorative Justice Week (Nov. 15-22). They’ll talk about their new DVD, The Reena Virk Story, and how the tragedy has led them into restorative dialogue with communities, teachers and students, and even one of the people convicted of Reena’s slaying.

Organizer Brenda Morrison, an assistant professor in SFU’s School of Criminology, studies bullying and restorative practices and says the Virks bring a powerful message. Morrison’s students are currently working on projects linking the ethics of compassion with restorative justice practices (tied in with this week’s launch of the Dalai Lama Centre’s Charter for Compassion).

Meanwhile colleague Liz Elliott will spend much of the week in prisons facilitating workshops for prisoners and staff, including a seminar at Mountain Institution on Wednesday, Nov. 18. On Thursday, Nov. 19 Elliott and her students will participate in a day-long workshop on restorative justice at the Ferndale Institution.

Elliott, an associate professor in the school, has spent 30 years involved in research, teaching and outreach to prisoners. She makes regular treks to Ferndale and other Fraser Valley institutions to join in talking circles with inmates.

Brenda Morrison, 778.782.7627;
Liz Elliott, 778.782.4730;


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