Restorative justice is about bringing victims and offenders together, to agree on the response to a particular incident. This puts the victim at the centre of the criminal justice system and allows the offender to recognise the outcomes of their actions.
It is not a new initiative. Various agencies working with offenders have successfully used restorative approaches for the last few years.
One of the most well documented restorative techniques involves offenders meeting their victim after they have been convicted of the crime. This aims to reduce reoffending by encouraging the offender to understand the impact they’ve had on the victim. It also reduces the risk of driving a wedge into the community, which in turn can increase the risk of further crime.
However, restorative justice can be applied in many different ways and involves a whole host of agencies including other criminal justice bodies, councils and even schools.