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NCJ Number: 213980 
Title: Institutionalization of Restorative Justice in Canada: Effective Reform or Limited and Limiting Add-On? (From Institutionalizing Restorative Justice, P 167-193, 2006, Ivo Aertsen, Tom Daems, and Luc Robert, eds., -- See NCJ-213972)
Author(s): Kent Roach
Date Published: 2006
Page Count: 27
Sponsoring Agency: Willan Publishing
Portland, OR 97213-3644
Sale Source: Willan Publishing
c/o ISBS, 5804 N.E. Hassalo Street
Portland, OR 97213-3644
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: This chapter explores Canada’s efforts to institutionalize restorative justice (RJ) practices, particularly with disadvantaged populations.
Abstract: The main argument extended by the author is that structural impediments have effectively blocked the bottom-up actualization of RJ practices in Canada. Although Canada has eagerly pursued the institutionalization of RJ within its criminal justice practices, the author points out how this institutionalization has mainly been a top-down political and legal exercise without a corresponding bottom-up actualization of effective RJ practices. The first part of the chapter discusses the legislative initiatives that have attempted to integrate RJ outcomes as part of sentencing. The rhetoric surrounding the incorporation of RJ into sentencing is examined and involves an emphasis on the ability of sentences to achieve restorative outcomes such as offender rehabilitation and victim reparation. The second part of the chapter focuses on how the incorporation of RJ into sentencing has been institutionalized for the sentencing of Aboriginal offenders. The potential unintended consequences of some RJ practices on Aboriginal communities are examined, such as practices that bring offenders and victims face to face. In the third section, the author critically examines Canada’s recent attempts to extend RJ sentencing practices intended for Aboriginal offenders to other disadvantaged groups, particularly African-Canadian offenders. Specifically, the problem of monetary restitution for disadvantaged offenders is considered and the author challenges the Canadian criminal justice system to create an approach to reparation that would not place full responsibility for providing compensation for crime on offenders. The fourth section examines Canada’s Youth Criminal Justice Act (YCJA), which recognizes a variety of restorative purposes and encourages the use of extra-judicial measures and conferences at various stages of the justice process. The YCJA has taken a flexible approach that encourages RJ practices without actually mandating that they occur, which may provide a framework for the institutionalization of RJ practices within youth justice. Notes, references, cases
Main Term(s): Canada; Restorative Justice
Index Term(s): Aborigines; Criminal justice system reform
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