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A Case Study of Developing a Systemic Approach Toward Restorative Justice in Washington County, Minnesota.

Coates, Robert B
June 4, 2015

Source: (2002) VOMA Connections. Research and Practice. Autumn.

Robert Coats, Mark Umbreit, and Betty Vos begin this article with the observation that restorative justice programs frequently provide significant resources for serving victims and offenders, and for involving community members in the justice process. Often, however, such programs have minimal impact on a jurisdiction’s total or systemic response to crime. In view of this, the authors point to an initiative to develop a systemic restorative justice approach. Washington County Community Corrections in Minnesota is endeavoring to adapt restorative justice principles as the basis for shaping their responses to crime with respect to victims, offenders, and communities. Coates, Umbreit, and Vos – of the Center for Restorative Justice and Peacemaking at the University of Minnesota – report on a study conducted by the Center to document this process of change. The study deals with key elements of change; barriers and resistance to change; the effects of changes on staff, justice officials, and community members; and issues relating to ongoing progress in integrating restorative justice into the department’s responses to


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