Source: (2005) Paper presented at the Police Service of Northern Ireland Conference on Human Rights and Restorative Justice, Belfast, 1 March.

In Northern Ireland, then, community restorative justice projects have been an important part of the peace process. They have reduced the incidence of punishment violence, they have engaged ex-combatants in peaceful community activism, they have engaged thousands of people in practising justice in their neighbourhoods, they have reduced anti-social crime and they have spread the radical principles of restorative justice. They are now poised, assuming goodwill on all sides, to form, necessarily gradually and incrementally, a partnership with the statutory criminal justice system that will fully express the new social contract that must be the result of a genuine peace process. Is the Northern Ireland Office prepared to abandon its obstructive position and show the necessary goodwill? (Excerpt)

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