Solicitor’s Office seeks volunteers

The Fourth Circuit Solicitor’s Office is seeking volunteers for the Juvenile Arbitration Program. The Fourth Circuit Solicitor, William B. Rogers Jr. strongly supports the Arbitration Program that was implemented in the Fourth Circuit in 1999 and would like to see the successful program continue to grow.

Arbitration is an innovative, cost-effective program for dealing with first time non-violent juvenile offenders that permits the community to take an active role in the justice system. The Arbitration Program is a restorative justice program that uses a back to basics approach, recognizing and supporting the community’s need to sanction crime and ensure public safety. The Arbitration Program allows the juvenile to accept responsibility for his/her actions and prevents the minor offenders from majoring in crime. Arbitration promotes court efficiency and helps reduce the workload on Family Courts by removing the less serious cases and allowing the courts to concentrate on serious and violent crimes.

As a volunteer, the Arbitrator would conduct a hearing with the juvenile offender and his/her parent, the victim(s) and Law Enforcement. During the hearing, the Arbitrator would determine the facts and negotiate an agreement of sanctions to be met in order for the juvenile offender to complete restoration and clear his/her record. In order to volunteer, an Arbitrator must meet the following requirements: must be 21 years old, have a South Carolina Driver’s License, must have a high school diploma or equivalent, no criminal record, and must complete the certification class. The certification class will divided into classes to take place May 18, May 21, May 28, June 1, June 4, and June 11, 2015 at The Town Hall in Society Hill, SC from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer, please call the Arbitration Coordinator, Barbara McLendon of the Fourth Circuit Solicitor’s Office at (843) 479-6516 to receive an application. This program cannot be successful without your help, please make a difference in your community.

It is important to have a clean juvenile record as most employers, military, and colleges are now seeking to have that information. An individual desiring to have their juvenile record expunged must initiate the process themselves as the process is not automatic. You must be at least 18 years old to request the expungement. Please contact Loriane Griggs of the Fourth Circuit Solicitor’s Office at (843) 479-6516 to see if you qualify.

Author: Duane Childers

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