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Restorative justice – a community-based response to crime

Harmon, Will
June 4, 2015

Source: (1997) The Compass (Summer).

Despite trends toward mandatory sentencing, prison overcrowding, and high recidivism, justice can be restorative, Will Harmon argues in this article. Restorative justice emphasizes community-based problem-solving rather than “just desserts.â€? To illustrate with a specific example, Harmon recounts the use of a sentencing circle to respond to a chronic offender in Canada, which leads to discussion of the question of quantitative evidence in favor of restorative justice. In view of all of this, and despite certain concerns about restorative justice, he asks whether restorative justice should be an alternative to incarceration, or whether incarceration should be an alternative to restorative processes.


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