Source: (2005) Master of Arts Thesis, State University of New York.

The relatively unremarkable international expansion of restorative justice practices has produced a lively debate concerning the application of restorative justice processes in matters of gendered violence. This paper examines critical issues regarding the evolving movement to apply restorative justice processes to cases of domestic violence. Advocates for victims of domestic violence are raising serious and significant questions about whether core assumptions inherent in restorative justice principles and values make its application especially problematic in matters involving manifestations of domestic violence. The paper presents a balanced consideration of victims’ advocates’ concerns and examines the fundamental nature of these. The debate has important implications because domestic violence victims and their advocates fear that the ill-considered application of restorative practices could place victims in substantial jeopardy and compromise critical hard-won gains within the contemporary system of criminal justice.