Oral language competence and restorative justice processes: Refining preparation and the measurement of conference outcomes
from the paper by Hennessey Hayes and Pamela Snow:
Restorative justice conferencing for young offenders is a legislated response to youth offending, which has been in place in all Australian states and territories for nearly two decades. Restorative justice conferences are meetings between young offenders, their victims and supporters to discuss the offence, its impact and what the young person can do to repair harms caused by the offending behaviour. There is now a substantial body of research that has examined the impact restorative justice processes have on participants (eg how young offenders and victims judge the process). Results are largely positive, showing that participants view restorative justice processes as fair and they are satisfied with outcomes. Given the highly conversational nature of restorative justice conferencing processes however, this paper reviews research on oral language competence and youth offending. It raises questions about the need to refine preparatory work with young offenders and victims, to better understand young offenders’ capacities to effectively communicate in conference processes. It suggests that improved preparation (where language impairments in young offenders are identified and addressed) will lead to better outcomes for young offenders and victims.
A voice for the future of juvenile justice in Asia Pacific.
from the report written by Alice McGrath and published by International Juvenile Justice Observatory:
...The report sheds light on crucial areas of juvenile justice and leading practices in this regard, including prevention, diversion, restorative justice, improving conditions of detention and promoting social reintegration. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) welcomes the efforts of APCJJ to promote the implementation and application of diversionary measures and restorative justice programmes for children in the Asia-Pacific region. This report serves as an excellent basis for future juvenile justice reform endeavors in the Asia-Pacific region. It will help to find innovative responses to protect children in conflict with the law from harm and strengthen juvenile justice systems in the region.
Restorative justice will cover the country
From the article on Voxy.co.nz:
Justice Minister Judith Collins has ... announced restorative justice services will be expanded and rolled out to all courts in New Zealand.
An additional 2,400 restorative justice conferences - totalling 3,600 in 2014/15 - follow the Government’s $4.4 million investment in adult pre-sentence restorative justice as part of Budget 2013.
Ms Collins says investing in pre-sentence restorative justice will help deliver results, give victims a voice in the justice system and make victims strong.
Addressing lateral violence in the workplace
From the report by John Thompson-Mills:
...Restorative Justice is now appearing in another form of conflict resolution, to address lateral violence in Aboriginal communities.
Lateral violence is a verbal form of bullying but it can occur in many forms from making faces and raising eyebrows to malicious gossip, shaming, backstabbing, broken confidences and social exclusion.
Seeing the Other Side
From the article on PFI.org:
Once so full of fear that she could not sleep or speak, Melissa now stood before a group of prisoners to read aloud a letter she wrote to the man whose crime tormented her for years. "What you did to me 14 years ago changed my life forever,” she read from her letter. She was recalling the day when a man held a gun to her head during a robbery at the bank where she worked in Queensland, Australia. While the robbery lasted only a short time, the ramifications from it continue to affect Melissa today. “I lost years of my life and years from my children’s life,” she lamented. “I prayed the world would stop. The world kept spinning, and while other lives thrived, mine stood still.”
Restorative justice gets boost with new spending
from the article on Radio New Zealand News:
The Government is to spend more on restorative justice conferences: $4 million of new spending over two years has been earmarked in the Budget.
The Government at present funds about 2000 restorative justice conferences each year at a cost of about $2.1 million.
Rape victim 're-victimised' by system
It took Helena Watson more than three decades to speak out about her father's sexual abuse.
Now the Christchurch woman says she has been revictimised by restorative justice.
from the post by Virago on KiwiBiker forum:
This makes for some interesting reading: http://aranakenny.blogspot.co.nz/
It's worthwhile clicking through some of the links to get all the details, but in a nutshell:
A Victoria University employee, doing caretaking and security work, steals a student's cellphone while working. Seven months later, the victim tracks the phone down using smart-phone technology, and hands the evidence to the police. The culprit is arrested and charged, and he admits the theft.
Police use of court alternatives for young persons in New South Wales
Through the use of warnings, cautions and conferences instead of court proceedings, the [Young Offenders Act (YOA)] established procedures for dealing efficiently and directly with children who commit certain offences. Previously reported statistics suggested that diversionary options for young persons have not been used uniformly and equitably across the State. The purpose of the current study was to measure the level of variation across [NSW Police Force’s Local Area Commands (LACs)] in the proportion of young persons diverted from court, after adjusting for factors police must or can take into account when considering whether to deal with a young person via a caution or a conference.
Rehabilitation is everyone’s responsibility
Recently, I watched a Vimeo video about the reform of the Solomon Islands Correctional Services. It starts with an individual describing his crime and how the local traditional justice would’ve responded with banishment. The current system wasn’t very different; the banishment happened with a prison sentence. From that point, different officials and community volunteers describe a process of shifting the system culture from punitive to rehabilitative. It’s a shift that focuses on needs and relationships.