Source: (2009) Protecting Children: A Professional Publication of American Humane. 24(4):5-18.

One of the primary programs of restorative justice today is victim-offender conferencing (VOC), in which victims and offenders, along with facilitators, discuss the impact that a criminal act has had on them and how they can begin healing. VOC and restorative justice programs generally have high satisfaction levels and positive effects on both victims and offenders (Abrams & Umbreit, 2002; Bradbury, 2002). On the whole, restorative justice has been found to have a positive impact in lowering recidivism rates (Evje & Cushman, 2000). Specifically, it has long been found that youths participating in restorative justice programs, particularly VOC, have lower recidivism rates (Schneider, 1986; Stone, 2000). However, these positive findings have not been universal (Stone, Helms, & Edgeworth, 1998; Robinson, 2003). Our study examines the attempt of restorative justice programs to lower juvenile crime rates in Barron County, a rural county in northwestern Wisconsin. (excerpt)