Restorative justice expert commends Dal's approach to dentistry scandal

March 13, 2015

Dalhousie University has received praise from Brenda Morrison, Director of the Centre for Restorative Justice at Simon Fraser University, for its use of restorative justice when addressing the recent scandal involving a misogynistic Facebook group operated by some male dentistry students. Morrison said that she is "in awe of the level of commitment, courage, compassion, and time that Dalhousie has been willing to give this process ... Everybody there is under pressure to do the conventional thing and just push the problem and the people out the door, which bypasses any opportunity to learn and grow from this." Morrison said that while there is a significant body of research supporting the use of restorative justice at the grade-school level in the US, Dal is leading the Canadian university sector in this area. But not everyone agrees. Jacqueline Warwick, professor of gender and women's studies at Dal, said that the process doesn't adequately address different levels of culpability, and that the school should have launched a formal investigation prior to the restorative justice process. "Without a proper investigation we can't know what an appropriate penalty is for all of the players," she said. CBC