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Restorative Justice: Present Prospects and Future Directions

Weitekamp, Elmar G. M
June 4, 2015

Source: (2002) In, Elmar G.M. Weitekamp and Han-Jurgen Kerner, Restorative Justice: Theoretical Foundations. Deon, UK: Willan Publishing. Pp. 322-338.

In this concluding chapter to the book, Weitekamp traces present developments in restorative justice and projects future directions for restorative justice. A decade ago Weitekamp saw few prospects for restorative justice; it seemed to him that criminal justice systems largely buried this form of conflict resolution. Yet in the following years numerous developments occurred in keeping with restorative justice and expanding its influence – for example, in new approaches to policing, in prevention programs oriented around “communities that care,â€? and within criminal justice systems (such as family group conferences, peace circles, community circles, and more). Hence, Weitekamp finds signs of restorative justice ideas and practices taking shape and gaining appeal. Yet, he declares, restorative justice as a fully fledged alternative to retributive and rehabilitative approaches remains distant. In this vein he discusses shortcomings of current restorative justice practices, paradoxes in the field of restorative justice, and the potential promise of restorative justice in the years ahead.


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