At Common Justice, we leverage our experience in New York to support the expansion of alternatives to incarceration for violent felonies nationally. We do this by forming deep partnerships with aligned initiatives across the U.S. and supporting them with the training and community to help ensure their work flourishes. Despite significant retrenchment in efforts to end mass incarceration broadly, never since our founding have, we experienced such robust and serious appetite for expanding these solutions.

Our Approach

At the core of our approach is a focus on relationship-building and trust. We prioritize jurisdictions where there is a genuine invitation and a well-established movement for change, actively seeking concrete solutions to violence. We partner with people and organizations working to divert cases of serious violence in the adult courts away from prison sentences and toward strategies that hold people accountable for harm, break cycles of violence, and secure safety, healing, and justice for survivors.
We collaborate with partners in three main ways:

Core Partners

These are partners interested in implementing a proximate version of our restorative justice diversion model, in sites that align with our strategy and values. We provide long-term, robust, customized support and training to them over the period of their program development and early practice.
Our current core partners are the Freedom Community Center in St. Louis, MO; the People’s Advocacy Institute in Jackson, MS; and the Raphah Institute in Nashville and Memphis, TN.

Common Justice Practitioners Lab

The Common Justice Practitioners Lab is a 12-month cohort-based training and practice space for groups in jurisdictions that are not core partners but are fully values aligned and immensely promising. The Lab is designed to be collaborative and interactive, drawing from the experiences of the Common Justice team and Lab participants grappling with shared challenges to co-create the practices and conditions necessary to divert cases of violence well. We aim to foster a network of solidarity with our cohort members as they build and implement impactful diversion programs for serious violence nationwide. For a closer look at the impactful work and the diverse profiles of our 2024 class, view our brochure.

New York City Collaborative to Transform Violence

Anchored in our mission, the New York City Collaborative to Transform Violence aims to build bridges between restorative justice and Community Violence Intervention (CVI) work. This 8-month cohort-based learning collaborative will draw on the shared wisdom in the rooms we convene and give CVI practitioners the opportunity to develop and deepen restorative justice-based skills to anchor processes that center accountability or provide pathways to repair that can durably interrupt and heal cycles of violence, meet the needs of survivors, and earn the respect, trust, and participation of community members with a stake in the outcomes. For more details on the Collaborative, click here.

Ecosystem Partners

We understand our work as part of movement and work to contribute to our shared success more broadly. We foster a broad network, sharing foundational resources and engaging in field- and public-facing dialogues to advance aligned work in varied contexts.