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The Role of Victim-Offender Mediation in Intra-Familial Child Sexual Abuse Cases

Gutman, Judy
June 4, 2015

Source: (1998) Paper presented at “Changing families, challenging futures”, 6th Australian Institute of Family Studies Conference, Melbourne, 25-27 November. Downloaded 14 February 2005.

The thesis of this paper is that victim-offender mediation should be included in the criminal process, in intra-familial CSA cases prosecuted when the victim is a child and the offender is an adult. Victim-offender mediation, in this unique kind of case, can address deficiencies in the current system. It can provide a simple mechanism for victims to describe the abuse experience and its ramifications to the offender. It can enable victims and offenders to accept that the abuse was not the victim’s fault and for offenders to acknowledge responsibility for the abuse. This acknowledgement can open the door to the offender’s general re-integration into society and may also reduce recidivism. Mediation may also pave the way for reconciliation between victim and offender. (excerpt)


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