Voluntary participation in restorative practices
A restorative justice facilitator shall conduct a restorative justice practice based on the principle of voluntary participation for all participants. Voluntary participation means that the participants in the restorative justice process have come to the meeting by choice.
Review: Walking the talk: Developing ethics frameworks for the practice of restorative justice
While restorative justice is a theory that encompasses a set of values for how justice should be done, maintaining those values and the restorative focus can become difficult in day-to-day practice. People working in restorative justice organisations – whether staff or volunteers – make a myriad of decisions related to practices each day. Such decisions may be related to work with clients, work with other organisations or internal processes and interactions. How can they make these decisions while maintaining the integrity of their restorative justice programme?
Susan Sharpe seeks to answer this question with Walking the talk: Developing ethics frameworks for the practice of restorative justice. In the 62 page publication, Sharpe sets out a process that organisations and individual practitioners can use to develop an ethics framework to empower and guide decisionmaking. In doing so, she avoids the contentious issue of setting standards by developing the steps in a process that each organisation can use to develop a framework that has direct meaning for it and the various issues that it faces.
Child Justice Act undercut from within
Even before it began the rocky climb through the parliamentary process, the Child Justice Bill was considered to be internationally path-breaking legislation. It was born in the euphoria of the early 1990s in a country where youth had been considered politically lethal, whipping was a sentence, imprisonment the standard response to wrongdoing and torture considered a legitimate interrogation method.
The new legislation sought to provide restorative justice by diverting child offenders from this punitive justice system and keeping them out of prisons, which simply hardened criminality. It devised ways to work with offenders and victims to restore harmony in the community where the crime took place. Punishment would be tailored to the crime and dealt in a way that maintained the self-respect of the offender as well as the approval of both community and victim.
Implementing restorative justice: A guide for schools
Recently, the Illinois Criminal Justice Authority released the guide Implementing Restorative Justice: A guide for Schools as part of a series of resources created to help with the statewide implementation of restorative justice for working with young offenders. Developed with assistance from juvenile justice practitioners and school personnel, it provides guidance for implementing policy and practice in both elementary and secondary schools. The goals of the guide include:
- Introduce to school personnel the concepts of restorative justice and restorative discipline.
- Offer new tools that can reduce the need for school exclusion and juvenile justice system involvement in school misconduct.
- Offer ways to enhance the school environment to prevent conflict and restore relationships after conflict arises.
Accreditation blueprint: Proposal to the Restorative Justice Consortium
from the Executive Summary:
In 2008, the Restorative Justice Consortium commissioned a consultancy, JPA Europe Limited, to conduct a 12 month project to define and test accreditation for restorative practice and based on the results develop a blueprint to map out the way forward in accreditation for the restorative practice sector.
Justice group welcome
A Unionist councillor has welcomed news that a community restorative justice scheme in Newry and south Armagh has received official government status.
The CRJ scheme, based in Mullaghbawn, received government accreditation on Thursday following an inspection by Criminal Justice Inspection NI (CJI).
The inspection reported that the UN principles on Restorative Justice were being observed by the organisation and that senior police officers working in Newry and south Armagh indicated that a relationship which held promise for the future is developing.
Do you care about accreditation in restorative practice?
From Restorative Justice Consortium: The Restorative Justice Consortium, in conjunction with the independent consultancy JPA Europe Limited, is undertaking a project to map out a ‘blueprint’ for accreditation in restorative practice.