Restorative Solutions responds to findings of Inquiry into Restorative Justice
Gary Stephenson, Chief Executive of Restorative Solutions CIC, gives his response to the Justice Select Committee’s inquiry into Restorative Justice in the criminal justice system.
'Restorative Solutions CIC welcomes the Justice Select Committee's findings and recommendations resulting from their inquiry into restorative justice in the criminal justice system. From our experience of working across England and Wales we fully support the recommendations for greater compliance of the Victims' Code, data sharing and the following of good practice from the NI Youth Conferencing service. However to ensure resources are deployed effectively a continued balance needs to be maintained through planned capacity building, awareness raising and provision of quality services by accredited restorative practitioners to make a real difference for all victims and offenders.
'All victims must have a right to access restorative justice at a time that is right for them across all areas of the criminal justice system. The Inquiry recognises that it is still early days for restorative justice and that further work is required to ensure that staff working within the criminal justice system are aware of Restorative Justice and the positive impact it can have on the lives of victims and the offender. Our experiences supports their finding as too many victims are missing out on restorative justice because they haven’t been made aware of it by those professionals. So we will be interested to see how the government intends to address the current weaknesses and we encourage practitioners and professionals to debate these issues on the Restorative Forum www.restorativeforum.org.uk .
‘We look forward to continuing to support the delivery of restorative justice services, these need time to become embedded within local criminal justice systems and beyond. We have found that the most effective restorative justice requires support, commitment and active engagement from local individuals and communities to collectively resolve conflict and harm through innovation and hard work.’
The full report can be found, by clicking on this link http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201617/cmselect/cmjust/164/16402.htm