Pre-sentencing Restorative Justice: Making a Way for Crime Victims
RJI is encouraged to read this story in the New York Times. What is imp0rtant about the application of restorative justice in this case is when it is utlized by the victim’s family: before sentencing. The victim’s family asked for restorative justice and they got it. Restorative justice is being used in cases of severe violence throughout the U.S. and globally. Victims are telling their stories. However, often when a victim offender dialogue (or conference) occurs in cases of severe violence, including murder, it is after sentencing while the offender is serving time. Not here. We think that option should be available. In this case the wishes of the victim’s family also affected the sentencing outcome, to some extent, but with the support of the prosecution. This is also important and ground breaking.
Restorative justice does two things: 1) it increases victims satisfaction and 2) it holds offenders accountable which will reduce the chance that offender will re-offender. RJI is committed to removing barriers that prohibit crime victims from choosing restorative justice. Are we ready in 2013 to bring about a new vision for the justice system? We are.