a provincial partnership of community and government focused on increasing safe and effective justice options for women experiencing family violence in Prince Edward Island, Canada


Designing a PEI Domestic Violence Treatment Option Court Process September 2003 - February 2006

This phase of the Justice Options for Women project, a working group of survivors of violence, victim advocates and government came together to design and make recommendations for the implementation of a domestic violence treatment option court process for PEI. A Domestic Violence Court provides an opportunity for women who are experiencing violence in a relationship to have access to a system which has a solid understanding and concern for the issues that arise in cases of family violence and which attempts to keep women safe through formal and treatment options.

Key Activities and Products

Values Workshop

Survivors of violence, community advocacy organizations, policy makers and front line staff in the criminal, family law and child protection systems came together to develop a statement of values upon which options developed during the Justice Options project will be based. This was held on October 17, 2003.

Development of a Domestic Violence Court

A Working Group of survivors of violence, victim advocates and key justice system personnel and policy makers used a victim-centred analysis to develop recommendations for a Domestic Violence Court and Treatment Options for Prince Edward Island.

Some of the issues that the Working Group focussed attention on include:

  • what role the criminal law system can play in protecting children in cases of family violence;
  • how to address the root causes of violence with treatment options;
  • whether and how to incorporate alternative processes such as restorative justice in cases of family violence;
  • how to ensure that the system works in a timely fashion for those in violent relationships;
  • how to avoid contradicting orders between the criminal and family law systems; and
  • how to avoid inefficient orders in the criminal law system;
  • how to ensure communication between and linkage of the criminal and family law systems; and
  • what part the criminal justice system can play in ensuring access to safe supervised and facilitated access.

Consultation Workshop with Women, Advocates and Government

The Working Group hosted a one day consultation workshop with survivors of violence, front line criminal justice staff, community organizations and other interested parties to present proposed options and get feedback. Communication materials were created to inform the justice system and the public about proposed options.

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