From the Worldwide Faith News archives www.wfn.org
California Judge to Receive Restorative Justice Award
25 May 1996 05:35:19
23 May 1996
96186 California Judge to Receive Restorative Justice Award
by Jerry L. Van Marter
LOUISVILLE, Ky.--Patrick J. Morris, a judge of the Superior Court of San
Bernardino County, Calif., and an elder at First Presbyterian Church of San
Bernardino, has been named the recipient of the General Assembly's 1996
Restorative Justice Award.
The award will be presented July 3 during the General Assembly Council
Awards Celebration at the upcoming Assembly in Albuquerque.
The Restorative Justice Award has been given each year to an
individual or group of individuals whose work exemplifies the Presbyterian
Church's commitment to restorative justice, defined as "addressing the
hurts and the needs of the victim and the offender in such a way that they
and the community might be healed."
Morris, who was appointed to the Superior Court Bench in 1976, has
garnered national attention for his establishment of a "Drug Court" in his
jurisdiction. Designed for those willing to admit their drug dependency and
their desire to change, the Drug Court program involves primarily youthful
drug offenders in a community of support and encouragement. Offenders
participate in community service projects, peer counseling and drug testing
and "court sessions" that have been described as "more like a church
meeting than a court." Those who have been unwilling to stick with the
Drug Court program are returned to traditional means of criminal justice:
Other programs established by Morris are a special advocate program
that trains civilian volunteers to serve as guardians for abused children
under court jurisdiction; a hospital-based program that provides full
service to children and families where there are allegations of sexual or
physical abuse; a residential youth education facility for older delinquent
youth that provides individualized education, job-training, community
service, values awareness and drug and alcohol education; a weekend team
work-release program; and a wilderness survival program for youth at risk
that teaches personal responsibility and self-esteem.
Morris has been honored with the 1981 Inland Southern California Judge
of the Year Award, the Judicial Award for Leadership in Service to Youth,
the 1991 Meritorious Service Award from the National Council of Juvenile
and Family Court Judges and the 1994 Jurist of the Year Award from the
Judicial Council of California.
Morris currently serves on the session of First Church, where he was
instrumental in establishing a church-based shelter for at-risk children.
He also helped create and maintain a latchkey program for neighborhood
children, and helped develop a model youth ministry program, "Fellowship of
For more information contact Presbyterian News Service
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), Louisville, KY 40202
phone 502-569-5504 fax 502-569-8073
E-mail PCUSA.NEWS@pcusa.org Web page: http://www.pcusa.org
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