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NCJ Number: 204292 Find in a Library
Title: Restorative Justice for Adult Offenders: The New Zealand Experience (From Repositioning Restorative Justice, P 208-220, 2003, Lode Walgrave, ed., -- See NCJ-204284)
Author(s): Allison Morris; Gabrielle Maxwell
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 13
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: Case Study
Format: Book (Softbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter describes the process of restorative justice for adult offenders in New Zealand and discusses its implications for the state.
Abstract: In practice, most restorative justice programs deal with juvenile offenders, although the concept is not limited to juvenile justice. In New Zealand there was considerable support for restorative justice programs for adult offenders. In response, three community panel pilot programs were implemented to divert adult offenders appearing before the criminal courts. A fourth pilot program implemented restorative justice conferences which voluntarily bring together the offender, the victim, and their supporters to discuss the offense and find an equitable solution. The plan is then submitted to the referring judge who decides the ultimate sanction. In New Zealand restorative justice practices deal with serious offenders, unlike restorative practices in other countries which limit participation to minor offenders. Domestic violence cases, however, are excluded from the restorative process in New Zealand. An analysis of the process and outcomes of the restorative process in New Zealand reveals significant benefits for adult offenders, their victims, and the state. Most participants of restorative practices expressed satisfaction with being able to participate in the legal process and repair the harm caused by the offense. Moreover, applying restorative justice programs to adult offenders benefits the state in two main ways. First, the adult offenders who participated in two of the pilot programs had lower reconviction rates following completion of the programs than did a control group of matched offenders who were subjected to the traditional criminal justice process. Restorative justice participants who were reconvicted, were reconvicted of less serious offenses than their control group counterparts. The second benefit to the state involves a significant cost savings because the use of restorative processes limits the amount of cases going through the courts and on to custody. While the application of restorative justice processes to adult offenders in New Zealand has seemed effective, evaluation of restorative justice conferences is just beginning. More data is needed before undertaking a widespread application of restorative justice practices for adult offenders. Notes, references
Main Term(s): Adult offenders; Restorative Justice
Index Term(s): Family conferencing; Judicial process; New Zealand; Recidivism
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