What is restorative justice?
Restorative justice is an attempt to get offenders to take responsibility for their actions, and find ways to repair the harm they have done.
It aims to get victims and the community involved in decisions about how best this can be done.
How does restorative justice work?
The first step is for the offender to take responsibility for their actions.
They must then meet with the victim, or victims, to discuss the harm they have done.
This is followed by a meeting with the community, where the offender explains what they did and why, and how they plan to make amends.
And finally, the offender makes said amends.
This is often facilitated by a trained professional.
Who can participate in restorative justice?
Persons involved in the offense (offenders, complainants, victims) and their supporters; others identified by the offender or complainant as having played some part in the incident. Community representatives may also be included and finally a trained facilitator.
What are the benefits of restorative justice?
Some benefits of restorative justice include:
– Increased accountability of offenders
– Opportunity for victims to have a voice and be heard
– Reparations or restitution for damages done
– Prevention of future offenses
– Improved relationships within the community
Why should you care about restorative justice?
As a community member, you should care about restorative justice because it can help prevent future offenses and make the community a safer place.
As a victim of crime, you should care about restorative justice because it can give you a voice and allow you to have a say in the judicial process.
As an offender, you should care about restorative justice because it gives an opportunity to make right on past wrongs and it may help keep you out of jail and the “traditional” legal system.