What is Restorative Justice?
Restorative Justice provides victims of crime the opportunity to communicate with the offender in an attempt to repair the harm caused. In many cases the Restorative Justice process is carried out face to face but can also be completed via a shuttle approach which could involve writing letters.
What are the benefits of Restorative Justice?
For the Victim:
- Victims are given the opportunity to explain the effect that the actions of the offender has had on their life.
- Victims can ask the offender for an explanation.
- It allows them to obtain closure and move on. It is associated with high levels of victim satisfaction
For the Offender
- Offenders are given the opportunity to apologise for their actions.
- Restorative Justice is estimated to reduce reoffending by 14%
- It allows offenders the opportunity to learn from victim and change
How can you take part in Restorative Justice?
Either the victim or the offender can ask for Restorative Justice, and it can take place at any point of the Criminal Justice System. A trained Restorative Justice facilitator meets both parties before arranging a meeting. Alternatively, the participants may prefer to communicate indirectly, or not to go ahead with the process at all.
The Restorative Justice Process
- Both parties need to consent to Restorative Justice
- The Restorative Justice Coordinator meets with both the victim and the offender separately to discuss what they may want to gain from the process.
- Once the facilitator is satisfied that it is safe for the meeting to go ahead for both the victim and the offender they will arrange a date for the Restorative Justice Conference.
The Restorative Justice Conference is a meeting between the victim and the offender, along with the Coordinator. Both the victim and the offender can request for an individual to join them to offer support.
If you would like to take part in a restorative process or learn more about it please contact our restorative justice officer: