A review of the Youth Justice System in Northern Ireland
One of the most positive developments to have arisen out of Northern Ireland’s recent history is the expansion of rich and varied restorative practices. Restorative approaches have been used to respond to offending and anti-social behaviour, family disputes, disruptive behaviour in schools and children’s homes and in helping prisoners reintegrate back into their communities. Early teething problems have been largely overcome and professional practice in restorative justice in Northern Ireland is now internationally recognised.
I am meeting with the House of Commons Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights this morning.
This is what I will be saying.
Thank you, Mr. Chair. I am pleased to have this opportunity to address you and the rest of the committee regarding Bill C-10, The Safe Streets & Community Act.
....My daughter, Candace, was 13 years old when she was abducted and found murdered six weeks later. We lived without knowing the details of what happened for two decades.
Crime victims turning to restorative justice
from the article by Frazer Maude on Sky News:
...[F]or an increasing number of victims, restorative justice has helped them move on with their lives in a way they never thought possible.
Joanne Nodding is one such victim. She told Sky News how she feared for her life when she was raped almost 10 years ago, and how even seeing her attacker being sentenced to life did little to help her achieve closure.
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.
Can restorative justice help balance the scales for African-American youth?
Darryl is a 12-year-old African American boy whose mother, Ariel, is a single parent. Ariel left high school after becoming pregnant with Darryl and has struggled to find anything but minimum wage jobs to support her family.
One day when he was out with another friend, Darryl and his friend snuck into the neighbor's house and stole a video game. The neighbors called the police.
One might conclude that the future does not bode well for Darryl. In fact, we probably would not be surprised if we were to learn later on that he was in prison. However, there is much more to his story, and much to learn from it. The police response ultimately resulted in a restorative intervention and provided Darryl with an alternative approach.
Dade County schools hit upon alternative measures of punishment through restorative justice
It’s easy for administrators at Miami-Dade County Public Schools [MDCPS] to suspend and expel students for misconduct, but the underlying is-sue of why pupils misbehave will not be resolved.
So instead of rushing to ruin a kid’s career, the Educational Transformation Office [ETO] has embraced Restorative Justice at some of the “Rising 19” schools to address the root causes of why kids act out. In particular African American and Latino students are getting kicked out more than Caucasians, which leaves them vulnerable to getting into more trouble and they end up catching a charge and facing time behind bars.
Restorative justice: making neighbourhood resolution panels work
from the article by Keith Cooper in the Guardian:
The coalition pledge to boost communities' crime fighting power is due to take a big step forward next year. By March 2012, the Ministry of Justice hopes to announce the first group of officially endorsed neighbourhood resolution panels. These will usher in a new era of "restorative-justice", allowing panels of volunteers – including offenders and victims – to decide how low level crimes should be dealt with. Proceedings will be overseen by a trained member of the public instead of a magistrate or judge; lawyers are barred. The panels conclude with a signed agreement to which all parties agree.
Program to revamp student justice
from the article by Libby Jelinek in The Vista:
University of San Diego (USD) alum Justine Darling, '08, has collaborated with Student Affairs to establish a one-year pilot restorative justice program on campus that has the potential to transform how students experience USD's student conduct system.
....The one-year pilot program will implement restorative justice conferencing and peace circles to find solutions for issues in the campus community. The restorative justice process focuses on three main goals: to empower, to educate and to build relationships. Throughout the program, students are involved and invested in the decision-making process. The most valuable aspect of restorative justice, according to Darling, is that students learn another way to handle conflict in their lives, such that bringing the offender and impacted parties together can develop what would otherwise be a negative relationship into a positive one.
How victim rights became a juggernaut shaping spending, laws and the future of punishment
Newly elected as a state representative, Pete Lee hit the Capitol last January fired up with big ideas. The biggest of them all was the restorative-justice bill he introduced shortly after the session began.
Prison Reform Trust poll finding: 88% support restorative justice after the riots
In 1998 the British Crime Survey found that 41% of victims said they would agree to meet the offender, if this was offered to them, and 58% would accept reparation from the offender. In September this year, following the riots that took place across England in August 2011, an ICM poll, commissioned by the Prison Reform Trust found that 88% of the public thought victims of crime should have the right to tell offenders the impact of their crime; 94% believe offenders should make amends by doing unpaid work in the community; and 71% believe the victim should have a say in how the offender should make amends for the harm they have caused.