Source: (1997) Reintegrative Shaming Experiments (RISE), Australian National University, Canberra. RISE Working Papers: Paper No. 2

The authors claim that victims are the forgotten players in the drama of criminal justice, exploited for their evidence but otherwise abandoned. Victims say that little attention is given to the repair of the harm they have experienced personally, or to the psychological and emotional consequences of victimisation. They also say that they feel frustrated and alienated from the justice system, where both the process and the outcome of court procedures fail to take proper account of their perspective. The authors examine how the Canberra police have introduced a radical alternative to traditional court processing, called Diversionary Conferencing, to give victims an opportunity to redress the shortcomings of the justice system from their point of view. It provides them with a forum to explain directly all the harm they have experienced as a result of the offence and to be part of the process that decides on a suitable outcome to repair that harm.

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