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Restorative Justice

Restorative justice is a theory of justice that emphasizes repairing the harm caused or revealed by criminal behaviour. It is best accomplished through cooperative processes that include all stakeholders.

Three principles form the foundation for restorative justice:

  1. Justice requires that we work to restore those who have been harmed.
  2. Those most directly involved and affected by the infraction should have the opportunity to participate fully in the response if they wish.
  3. The role of democracy is to preserve a just community order, and the community's role is to build and maintain a just peace.

Restorative programs are characterized by four key values:

  1. Encounter: Create opportunities for victims, offenders and community members who want to do so to meet to discuss the infraction and its aftermath.
  2. Amends: Expects offenders to take steps to repair the harm they have caused.
  3. Reintegration: Seek to restore victims and offenders to whole, contributing members of society.
  4. Inclusion: Provide opportunities for parties with a stake in a specific infraction to participate in its resolution.
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