Source: (2002) Restorative Justice Week 2002 Resource Kit. Ottawa, Ontario: Restorative Justice and Dispute Resolution Branch, Correctional Services Canada.

Victim offender mediation is increasingly common in recent decades. Nevertheless, it is sometimes seen as inappropriate in cases involving violence, and it is not very common to attempt it many years after a crime. In this restorative justice resource paper, Siegfried Janzen – a member of the Citizens’ Advisory Committee in Petitcodiac, New Brunswick – tells the story of a mediation involving both those factors. In this case, domestic conflict between a husband and wife led to the wife’s death by the husband, with great emotional trauma to two sons, and a life sentence for the husband. After nearly two decades of incarceration, the man and one of the sons met in a mediated setting to talk with each other. Janzen, summarizing the crime, its effects, and the mediation itself, asks why the community was not involved in dealing with the aftermath of this crime, and why the needs of the victims appear to have been ignored at the time of the trial.