Source: (1996) Federal Probation. 60(3): 24-29.

Juvenile justice systems in at least 10 States are redefining their mission and restructuring their activities to promote a more balanced and restorative juvenile justice system based on understanding that victims and communities, along with offenders, are their clients and must be given opportunities for active involvement in the justice process. Family group conferences have potential advantages over current victim-offender mediation practice in that they: (1) involve more people in the community in discussing offenses, their effects, and how to remedy the harm; (2) acknowledge a wider range of people as victims and explore the effects on those people; (3) allow a wider range of participants to express their feelings and potentially to assist with reintegrating the offender into the community and healing the victims; and (4) acknowledge and regularize the important role of the family in a juvenile offender's life.