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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 76580 Find in a Library
Title: Beyond the Courtroom - Programs in Community Justice and Conflict Resolution
Author(s): B S Alper; L T Nichols
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 300
Sponsoring Agency: Gardiner Howland Shaw Foundation
Boston, MA 02111
Lexington Books
New York, NY 10022
Sale Source: Lexington Books
866 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10022
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This book presents a comprehensive overview of programs and procedures in conflict resolution and emphasizes the growing movement in the United States to bring the community into the process of deciding cases between landlords and tenants, neighbors, schools and pupils, and even prisoners and jailers.
Abstract: Five distinct programs are discernible in this movement: mediation, arbitration, restitution, victim assistance and compensation, and sentencing advice by citizen panels. These programs emanate from the current dissatisfaction with public safety and court procedures, although the idea of community involvement in the settlement of disputes dates back to ancient times. The book reviews major problems confronting the criminal courts and describes court-monitoring programs and resulting reforms such as pretrial diversion. A chapter on 'community' provides theoretical background for the subsequent detailed cross-cultural comparisons of successful programs in 25 countries as well as in the United States. A section on remembering the victim details varied aspects of restitution including adult restitution programs and restitution for youthful offenders; describes the Vera Institute Witness Alert System; and explores victim assistance programs in California, ILLINOIS, and Massachusetts. Compensation to victims as redress is discussed, along with Federal and State legislation, legislation in other common-law countries, and legislation in Europe. Specific chapters, each devoted to a distinct type of community program, examine the program's underlying philosophy, purpose, and method of operation. Whenever possible, addresses of current programs are given in order to enable readers beginning similar projects to contact an operating program. A section on community courts describes informal tribunals in the United States, including an Indian tribal court, a Mexican-American community court, community courts in Chinatowns, the Jewish Conciliation Board of New York City, and neighborhood justice centers. In addition, examples from the socialist world are described, such as the East German social courts and the mediation committees of the People's Republic of China. A final chapter presents a miscellany of community-court models from such diverse regions as Papua New Guinea, India, Mexico, Pakistan, and the Philippines. Charts, chapter notes, an index, a national directory of conflict-resolution programs, and a bibliography of approximately 300 references are included. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Arbitration; China; Community involvement; Conflict resolution; Cuba; Dispute resolution; German Democratic Republic; India; Mediation; Mexico; Neighborhood justice centers; Pakistan; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Restitution; Sentencing/Sanctions; Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR); United States of America; Victim compensation; Western Europe
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