As I chair the Illinois House Restorative Justice Committee, our committee acts on legislation dealing with the restoration of justice. A principle of restorative justice is to repair harm done to one another. The “Black Lives Matter” event at Oak Park and River Forest High School on Feb. 27, which was limited to black students only has done harm.

The struggle to prove that black lives matter has always been a rainbow push effort, so this is not the time to close the door on progress made over the years. We must walk hand in hand as a human race and eliminate exclusion and promote inclusion.

The leaders of the closed-door meeting now have an opportunity to show all of us how to make something good out of a wrong decision. Say you’re sorry and come together and begin something great for all of our kids.

The restorative justice community believes that this situation would need to convene a circle. Circles are used to discuss issues that caused a problem with the offender and the offended. Circles are used to come up with a solution to the problem.

State Rep. La Shawn K. Ford

Eighth District

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