According to Braithwaite (2004), restorative justice is:
...a process where all stakeholders affected by an injustice have an opportunity to discuss how they have been affected by the injustice and to decide what should be done to repair the harm. With crime, restorative justice is about the idea that because crime hurts, justice should heal. It follows that conversations with those who have been hurt and with those who have afflicted the harm must be central to the process. The process of restorative justice necessitates a shift in responsibility for addressing crime. In a restorative justice process, the citizens who have been affected by a crime must take an active role in addressing that crime. Although law professionals may have secondary roles in facilitating the restorative justice process, it is the citizens who must take up the majority of the responsibility in healing the pains caused by crime. According to Zehr and Mika (1998), there are three key ideas that support restorative justice. First is the understanding that the victim and the surrounding community have both been affected by the action of the offender and, in addition, restoration is necessary. Second, the offender's obligation is to make amends with both the victim and the involved community. Third, and the most important process of restorative justice, is the concept of 'healing,' or the collaborative unburdening of pain for the victim, offender, and community. All parties engage in creating agreements in order to avoid recidivism and to restore safety for how the wrongdoing can be righted which allows the victim to have direct say in the judgment process. This gives offenders the opportunity to understand the harm they have caused, while demonstrating to the community that the offender might also have suffered prior harm. Healing by reintegration of offenders into the community, strives to restore harmony, health, and well-being by comprising personal accountability, decision-making...
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