The evidence isn't merely anecdotal, Brooks adds. The British Ministry of Justice sees an average 27 percent decrease in recidivism among the convicts who go through restorative conferencing. Meanwhile, the victims' incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder drops by 32 percent and the Restorative Justice Consortium estimates an £8 payoff in reduced recidivism for every £1 spent on the program. In other words: the state saves money.

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