O.J. Simpson was just granted parole from Lovelock Correctional Center in Nevada where AVP offers workshops. We recognise that OJ carries a lot of negative baggage around how lots of folks perceive him. However, that’s precisely the point: We feel that there is something of good in each one of us, no matter what our history or past bad choices were. For OJ, like many if not most inmates who take AVP, a non-violent path is a work in progress. For someone like OJ to recognise that AVP is a help on that path says much for our program.
He has served nearly nine years for armed robbery and assault with a weapon when he tried to take back sports memorabilia in a hotel room in Las Vegas.
During his parole hearing, he told the parole board that the Alternatives to Violence course (AVP) he took there has been his most important lesson behind bars, and that he has often mediated conflict among inmates. He stated:
“I took two courses that I guess you guys don’t give too much credit to, it’s called Alternative to Violence. I think it is the most important course anybody in this prison could take because it teaches you how to deal with conflict through conversation. I’ve been asked many many times here to mediate conflict between individuals and groups and it gave me so many tools, how to use it, to try to walk these guys through, and not throw punches at one another.”
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