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Restorative Justice: The Choice between Bilateral Decision-Making Power and Third Party Intervention

Wemmers, J
June 4, 2015

Source: (2001) In, Brian Williams (ed.), Reparation And Victim-Focused Social Work (pp 34-44). London, UK: Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

In recent years there has been a new interest in procedural justice theory and especially for the criminal justice process. In their classic work on procedural justice, Thibault and Walker (1975) examined the conditions under which parties in a dispute would prefer third-party intervention and when they would prefer to keep decision-making power.
This article examines the implications of their findings for the current debate between restorative justice and traditional criminal justice models. In particular, it addresses the conditions under which victims would prefer to solve the problem themselves (ex. through mediation) and when they would prefer to leave decision-making power to a third party (i.e. judge). The paper closes with policy recommendations for restorative justice programmes.


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