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Community Involvement in Restorative Justice

Wright, Martin
June 4, 2015

Source: (2005) VOMA Connections no. 19 (Winter): 1, 11-16. Downloaded 3 May 2005.

It has been pointed out that there are differences between restorative justice and community justice. Restorative justice is primarily reactive, and tends to deal with individual cases; community justice looks not only at the wider effects of the crime after it has been committed, but also at the
social pressures which lead people to commit crime. Its advocates would also maintain, however, that social reforms should be introduced because they improve everyon’s quality of life, and not merely because they may reduce crime (Crawford and Clear 2001). This paper considers the idea that the advantages of restorative justice are even greater if it is also community-based (or “democratic” as defined by Wright 2000), that is, if there is a considerable amount of involvement of members of the public. But it recognizes that there are limits to this, and some difficulties of principle, as well as practical ones of putting it into effect. This section outlines some characteristics of community-based restorative justice, and describes a small survey to give a preliminary indication of the extent of community involvement in Europe. Then, after a note on the limitations of the survey, we will present a brief summary of the findings. (excerpt)


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