Source: (2005) Violence Against Women

Heather Strang and John Braithwaite’s edited anthology, Restorative Justice and Family Violence addresses the potential (or lack thereof) for restorative justice programs to combat family violence. The contributors include professors of law, criminology, and social work, as well as a few restorative justice advocates and indigenous activists. It is interesting to note that the list of contributors seems to generally exclude those who primarily identify as domestic violence advocates. The anthology does not present a uniform position on this issue: Some contributors generally endorse restorative justice programs as possible models for addressing family violence; others are generally skeptical of their ability to provide sufficient safety for survivors of violence and accountability for perpetrators. In addition, those authors who generally favor restorative justice programs are aware of the challenges faced in applying them to family violence cases, and those who are more skeptical of these programs are critical of the hard-line criminal justice approach as the favored strategy for addressing family violence. The strength of this volume is that the essays’ authors serve to correct the weaknesses in each other’s analyses. (excerpt)