Primary program manager/contact name (if applicable): Marlene Buffalo, Sr. Manager for Treaty
Protectorate and Enforcement, Keith Johnson

Phone number: 780-585-3793


Are you currently taking referrals to your RJ programs/service from the criminal justice system?
If yes, for how many years have you done so?
Rarely receive referrals

Geographic Area Served – what location(s) do you currently serve? From where are you willing to take referrals?
Ponoka, Wetaskiwin

Age limitations – Do you serve youth, adults or both?

Service Provision Restrictions – As per your agency mandate. (E.g. participants must be a member of a particular FNM community; participants must be Indigenous; participants must by referred with the involvement of a Victim Services Unit, etc.)
The participant/s must be member of the First Nations community or reside with a First Nations member in the community, not strictly Indigenous as long as the participant resides with a First Nations member. We appreciate any and all referrals.

Types of referrals accepted (what types of charges does your agency currently have experience with or expertise in adjudicating through Restorative Justice? If you are an independent service provider, where does your expertise lie in taking CJS referrals? What criminal justice matters are your agency currently able to address through your Restorative Justice program.)
We currently deal with most types of charges with the exception of homicide or sexual violence. We utilize our peacemaking and sentencing circles based on our traditional legal and cultural teachings. That is our expertise.

Has you or your agency ever dealt with, and have training and experience with adjudicating, more serious charges? If yes, please describe.
We will eventually obtain training and experience with adjudicating more serious charges as we will be operating under a court process/Peacemaking Tribunal Court.

Do you require victim participation?
In some cases, we require victim participation. Although we recommend, the choice to participate is voluntary and for the ones who have participated, the results were on the positive spectrum.

What is your administrative process for handling referrals? What can the referrer expect when they make a referral to you?
We take the phone calls first and then we ask that the participants come in to fill out forms for intake and documentation. If a lawyer makes a referral, they receive a report on the participant prior to sentencing. If it’s a self referral, we do the intake and resume RJ process and Circles process with Elders and an agreement is documented and signed (contract) by participant to undertake the directives of the Elders and to continue participating in the Circles.

What forms are required?
Intake, Confirmation, Circle Consent, and Agreement forms.

What is communicated to the referrer re: the length of time to adjudicate your RJ processes? And are there any other information that is regularly communicated back to the referrer regarding the case through the process?
Depending on who the referrer is, we ask them what their time frame is and if no time frame specified then the Elders can determine 3-12 months for clients.
The referrer will receive a formal report for their own case management processes, court or sentencing requirements.

What information and in what format is reported back to the referrer once the case is closed?
We state facts only, based on Elders’ requirements and what is specified as a requirement on the referrer’s case. We do the best to represent the participant in light to what is required for reporting mechanisms.

What is your capacity to take on additional referrals, should they come your way because of these new referral guidelines?
We are able to meet the capacity to take on additional referrals as we are training other Elders on the Restorative justice practices to coincide with the Indigenous legal traditions.

 Do you use volunteers, paid staff, or a combination of both in facilitation of RJ services?
We use volunteers who are paid staff in the facilitation of RJ services as may be required.

What training do you mandate for your Restorative Justice facilitators, elders, etc.?
We recommend the training provided by Alberta Restorative Justice Association and we provide Trauma-Informed Care, Sexual Violence, Mediation and facilitation. Any others that may assist in our mandate for Restorative Justice facilitators is closely looked at if beneficial for trainees.

Current/Actively taking Referrals from the Justice System

Length of Service
1 year

Geographic Area Served
Red Deer Region, Areas supported by Blackfalds RCMP and Lacombe Police Services

Age Restrictions
Youth, Older Youth; 12-25 years

Service Provision Restrictions

Types of referrals accepted

Summary; Indictable offences (e.g. Assault, threat to harm, arson, damage to personal property, break and enter, theft, vandalism criminal harassment)

Take Referrals for Serious Offences

Victim Involvement


General administrative process for handling referrals
To date, referrals come primarily from RCMP and Municipal Police in the region.