Restorative Justice and Youth Offending
At Restorative Justice 4 Schools we have direct experience of working within Youth Justice. We have delivered awareness, conference, victim engagement and Manager's training to a number of English and Welsh Youth Offending Teams.
The Youth Justice Board's publication Key Elements of Effective Practice: Restorative Justice defines the key aims or outcomes of restorative justice as:
~ victim satisfaction - reducing the fear of the victim and ensuring they feel 'paid back' for the harm that has been done to them
~ engagement with the young person - to ensure that they are aware of the consequences of their actions, have the opportunity to make reparation and agree a plan for their restoration in the community
~ creation of community capital - increasing public confidence in the criminal justice system.
The basic principles include:
~ putting things right and healing relationships, thereby giving high satisfaction to victims and reducing reoffending
~ ensuring that those directly affected by crime are involved in the process and that their wishes are given careful consideration
~ making positive outcomes for victim and community valid objectives, alongside changes in behaviour and attitude of the young person
~ addressing and being sensitive to particular cultural and special needs and be based on anti-discriminatory practice, with an understanding and respect for the diversity of different communities.
Restorative approaches that can be used within Youth Justice are:
~ Referral order youth offender panels
~ Direct reparation that benefits the victim
~ Indirect reparation unpaid work that benefits the community
~ Restorative conferencing
~ Family group conferencing
~ Victim-offender mediation
~ Youth restorative disposal