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Listening to victims - a critique of restorative justice policy and practice in the United States

Author(s)Mika, Harry, Mary Achilles, Ellen Halbert, Lorraine Stutzman and Howard Zehr
Title Listening to victims - a critique of restorative justice policy and practice in the United States
Source Federal Probation,2009, Vol.6, No. 2, pp 145-162
Date 209
Document type Research report
Coverage USA
Summary This report describes the activities and outcomes of the Listening Project, a collaboration of victim advocates and restorative justice personnel. The aim of the Listening Project was to examine restorative justice from a victim perspective. A number of opinions about restorative justice are presented, such as restorative justice being driven by offender needs and victim-centred only added to restorative justice as an afterthought. A key recommendation is that victim involvement should extend to the planning and programming of restorative justice. The need for victims to be provided with complete information about processes and possible outcomes is also emphasised. Five areas were identified as opportunities for collaboration between restorative justice advocates and practitioners, victims, victim services personnel and victim advocates. These key areas are: expanding the Listening Project into a structured community dialogue; providing avenues for program feedback; publication of research and guidelines; training; and development of standards.
Keywords Restorative justice; victim-centred; advocates; restorative programs

Restorative justice