Victims of sexual crime may confront their attacker
Victims of sexual crime who want to confront their perpetrators should be supported by the State in doing so, according to a new study on sexual abuse and restorative justice.
Restorative justice, which deals with victims and offenders by focusing on the harm arising from crime and resolving the underlying problems which caused it, has previously been ruled out for cases of sexual assault.
Crime victims meet offenders in new restorative justice programme
A mother said it “felt good” to look a burglar in the eye and explain the damage he caused her family.
Tracey Clift sat down with the thief who took irreplaceable items including the medal her grandfather had won in the First World War and a charm bracelet from her father.
She went to meet him in Lewes Prison, where the burglar is serving time for other crimes, almost five years after he broke into her Worthing home via the kitchen window and stole “most of our family history” from the safe.
Restorative Justice Conference between R and Mr Q
from the case report by Mark Creitzman:
It was at this point, that Mr Q mentioned that he felt that he would like to be able to forgive R by the end of the meeting and that he had a challenge for R to consider.
Mr Q asked R if he was up to a challenge and he nodded ‘Yes’. Mr Q said that if R could prove that he wanted to change the path of his life and made progress in Cookham Wood, that on his exit from the YOI, Mr Q would mentor him and support him through his transition. Mr Q told us that his long-term plan could involve R and himself using the negativity of the offence and turning it in to a ‘power for good’ and delivering sessions to schools, YOIs, colleges or universities.
from the article posted by Prison Fellowship England & Wales:
Rachel*, a Sycamore Tree volunteer, told us of how listening to a victim’s experiences had completely changed the attitude and behavior of an offender.
“Tyrone* was an offender that stood out to me. I remember him saying:
“In my past life I was a taker. I was robbing banks, shooting people, drinking, being involved in adultery, blasphemy and coveting my neighbour’s women. My sinning was prolific and I enjoyed it, I actually revelled in it.”
Offender: “Sycamore Tree is not just a course, but a life changer”
from the article by PF England and Wales:
I completed this course some months ago, but I am still experiencing the benefits even today. I am a huge advocate of Sycamore Tree as it has opened my eyes to the impact of my crime on numerous people, especially those who I did not know about, those who were victims through the ripple effect.
Experiencing the Sycamore Tree course
from the article posted by Prison Fellowship England and Wales:
At the start of this year, I had the privilege of attending a Prison Fellowship ‘Sycamore Tree’ course in a women’s prison. I joined an experienced group facilitator and got to know several women who had committed crimes and were serving time.
Actions and consequences: How restorative justice can help victims move on
from the article by Javed Khan:
If you were a victim of crime, would you want to meet the offender?
What would you say to them?
A burglary victim might, for example, want to talk about the inconvenience, the hassle of sorting out the mess and replacing what has been stolen.
They could spell out that some things - just objects to an outsider - are completely irreplaceable, and how sentimental value outweighs any financial cost.
But we all know that actions have unintended consequences, and burglary isn't just about what's been taken, it's about what's been left behind too.
Evaluation of The Forgiveness Project within prisons
The Forgiveness Project (TFP) is a UK based charity that uses real stories to explore how ideas around forgiveness, reconciliation and conflict resolution can have a positive impact on people’s lives. One aspect of the charity’s work is a programme run within prisons, targeted at the early stages of a sentence.
Unite offering prisoner mediation service at Kirklevington Grange Prison
....Mr James said the focus was always on the long-term goal of reducing reoffending. “We’re also providing a victim-offender mediation service for those Kirklevington prisoners who agree to talk to their victims and where the victim agrees to meet the perpetrator.
“This is one way a prisoner can show they have taken responsibility for their actions. They may want to offer an explanation to the victim. They may want to say sorry and agree a way to make amends.”
New Staffordshire crime-fighting partnership praised by Justice Secretary
On a visit to Staffordshire's new integrated crime-fighting hub, Justice Secretary Lord McNally met former offenders, victims of crime, and staff from police, probation and drug treatment agencies.
And Lord McNally was impressed at the joint working shown by the 180° Integrated Offender Management partnership, which aims to help tackle the most challenging and prolific offenders in Staffordshire in an integrated way.