Fifth Annual Death Penalty Symposium

Sponsored by Utah Valley University's Peace and Justice Studies and Integrated Studies Programs

November 19th, 2009
UVU Library Lecture Hall (Rm 120) - 1st floor of library, south end.

Contact:   Mark Olson, Event Organizer
                801-863-5888
                Mark.Olson@uvu.edu
       or     

                Michael  Minch
                Director of Peace and Justice Studies
                801-863-7482
                MMinch@uvu.edu

Schedule:

8:30 am- 9:45 am | Howard Morton
Co-Founder, Families of Homicide Victims and Missing Persons, Inc.
"Unsolved Murders Juxtaposed to the Death Penalty"

10:00-11:15 am | Michael Radelet
Professor of Sociology, University of Colorado-Boulder
"Does the Death Penalty Help Families of Homicide Victims?"

1:00 - 2:15 om | Howard Zehr
Professor of Restorative Justice, Eastern Mennonite University
"The Promise and Challenge of Restorative Justice for Victims"

2:30- 3:45 pm | Panel Discussion
With Morton, Radelet, and Zehr

3:45 - 4:30 pm | Book Signing With Guest Scholars
Lakeview Room, refreshments will be served

 

Summary:  

Is the death penalty the best way to respond to violent crime? This is a central question that lies at the heart of the fifth annual Symposium on Restorative Justice, Punishment and the Death Penalty. The symposium will take place Thursday, Nov. 19. The symposium is co-sponsored by UVU Integrated Studies and Peace and Justice Studies. Among other noted scholars, UVU will host Dr. Howard Zehr, known in his field as “the grandfather of restorative justice.”

The conference was created in an effort to educate the public on the status of capital punishment as a human rights issue and to provide an opportunity to learn about restorative justice. Restorative justice is a growing movement in the U.S. and around the world that finds creative ways to allow victims to receive justice from the criminals who have harmed them. It also allows the criminals some opportunity to restore a measure of justice to their victims. This dynamic works to heal the sense of loss within the victim and to restore a sense of accountability and dignity to the perpetrator of the crime.

“We should care deeply about our democracy, about nurturing it and strengthening it and we should care about justice,” said Michael Minch, director of Peace and Justice Studies at UVU. “Concerned citizens want to know why so many fellow citizens are incarcerated, and what can be done about crime and sentencing to promote justice rather than merely administer punishment. Students, faculty and community members should be aware of how a society treats its offenders.”

The conference’s keynote speaker, Dr. Zehr, is an award-winning professor of sociology and restorative justice at Eastern Mennonite University in Harrisonburg, Va., where he also serves as co- director of the Center for Justice and Peacebuilding. In May 2008, he was appointed to the Victims Advisory Group of the U.S. Sentencing Commission. He is a pioneer in the field of restorative justice. His book, “Changing Lenses:  A New Focus for Crime and Justice,” has been a foundational work in the growing restorative justice movement. Other speakers include Michael L. Radelet, a professor of sociology at the University of Colorado-Boulder, and Howard Morton, the co-founder and executive director of Families of Homicide Victims and Missing Persons, Inc.

Previous RJDP Symposia at UVU

1st Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: A Personal Perspective from Death Row
2nd Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: Sister Helen Prejean, Dead Man Walking
3rd Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty
4th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: Punishment and the Dealth Penalty
5th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty
6th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: What Does Justice Require?
7th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: Humanity and Justice - The Possibility 
8th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Death Penalty: From Capital Punishment to Restorative Justice - Where Does America Stand?
9th Annual Symposium on Restorative Justice and the Dealth Penalty: Why does the U.S. retain the Death Penalty?

Resources

The Death Penalty Information Center
Amnesty International

Lady of Mercy