Source: (2011) Revisioning Justice. Restorative Justice Week 2011. Correctional Services Canada.

Restorative justice (RJ) for Nova Scotia young offenders has been operational since 1999; first as a series of regional pilot projects and now as a permanent province-wide program under the supervision of the Nova Scotia Department of Justice. Cases can be diverted from court by police or Crown prosecutors to independent community agencies contracted by the Province to facilitate restorative practices. Judges can hold sentencing circles or refer to the same community agencies for the sentencing recommendation of a restorative conference. Correctional officials can also make such a referral. Virtually any offence where a young offender is involved can be the subject of restorative approaches (although there is a moratorium on the use of restorative practices in relation to domestic violence). Currently, RJ is being extended on a pilot-project basis to adult offenders. Restorative approaches are also gaining support in schools, community service contexts, and in the workplace. In other words, RJ is becoming institutionalized in Nova Scotia to such a degree that it merits serious and sustained study to determine whether it constitutes a significant and effective re-visioning of justice in the Province. (excerpt)