Restorative Justice

Restorative Justice

Restorative justice is a service that aims to repair the harm caused from a crime. Under the Victims Code of Practice all victims of crime have a right to receive information about restorative justice.

The process can bring a victim and an offender together to communicate in a variety of ways and give victims a voice!

It can give victims of crime the chance to have their say, explain the effect on themselves and seek a direct explanation from the offender about what they did. Through this the offender can begin to understand the impact of their behaviour.

Restorative justice does not replace the criminal justice system but helps to deal with the emotions related to the crime. It can be a means of closure or way to move on for the victim.

Restorative justice works alongside criminal justice proceedings and most victims tell us it helps. In fact, 85 per cent of victims of crime who have used restorative justice were satisfied with the process. And 78 per cent would recommend it to others.

How restorative justice works

Restorative justice can only take place when the offender has been identified and accepted guilt.

It doesn’t just happen when a court case has taken place; it is available when a victims is ready.

To start with, there’ll be a meeting between the victim and a trained facilitator.

At the meeting, the victim can explain:

  • what happened

  • how it affected them

  • what might make them feel better about it

If appropriate, the facilitator may then suggest communication between the victim and the offender. They’ll take their wishes and any concerns into account and treat both parties’ emotional and physical safety as a top priority.

The next step will be for the facilitator to speak to the offender about what happened and their understanding of the harm that was caused. They will then be asked if they would like the opportunity to communicate with the victim.

If the facilitator doesn’t feel a face to face meeting is a good idea, they’ll let the victim and/or the offender know and explain why. Instead of a meeting, if appropriate, the facilitator may be able to convey a message from the victim to the offender.

The facilitator will be a specialist in providing restorative justice and trained in supporting victims of crime. The service is completely confidential and impartial.

Restorative Justice Referrals

​If you are interested in restorative justice and would like to find out more, please contact the Beacon team at: rj@hertfordshirebeacon.org ​or call on 0300 011 5555 (Option 4).

If you are a professional looking to refer a client for restorative justice please contact the email address or phone number above for a referral form.