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Victims, Offenders, and Their Families: selecting a model for Family Group Conferences

Wright, Martin
June 4, 2015

Source: (1996) Paper presented for Séminaire Médiation: 3ème Recontre Internationale. Oñati, Spain. June 6-7.

This paper first considers the desirable features of an ideal system of responding to crime. Victim/offender mediation has been developed in New Zealand, influences by the Moari concern at the over-representation of their young people in the care system and in juvenile justice, in the process known as family group conferencing. At about the same time Braithwaite’s concept of “reintegrative shamingâ€? was published in Australia, and a different model of conferencing evolved there. Advocates of both models have visited Europe and North America, where there is considerable interest. But which model should be used? It is suggested that there should not be an either/or choice: practitioners should reconsider the aims and objectives of the justice system, and then decide how the principles of restorative justice could be applied in their country to conduct each stage of the process in the best interests of victims, offenders, and the community.


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