Restorative Justice is anchored on a vision of justice that restores and heals affected victims as a result of the crime. Restorative Justice is based on comprehending that crime goes against the relationship human beings have. Also, justice is made when people who are directly involved are given a chance to address the cause of harm. Restorative justice is also based on the values of equality, trust, honesty, compassion, integrity, self-awareness and responsibility. A restorative system is not only a means of resolving both old criminal cases, but it also contains mechanisms to deal with new problems. The paper explores the history and the incorporation of restorative justice in today’s world.
In the modern world, the restoration system originated in the year 1970 as a means to reconcile or mediate issues between victims and offenders (Zernova, 2013). However, the restoration system can be traced in ancient times where it was practiced in all over the world in places such as Native America, Asia, Canada, and the Arab world. Later on in the eleventh century, William the conqueror replaced the normal way of solving issues with the retributive system that incorporated the needs of affected victims and the rights of the accusers.
Australia is an example of a developed country that has incorporated restorative justice in its system (Zernova, 2013). The system has been used widely especially for criminals who have admitted committing an offense. It has been used extensively, especially points of contact with the Australian criminal justice. For instance, it has been used by law offenders to divert criminals away from the judicial system, as a way of arriving at a sentence. It has also been used as a means of releasing an offender from prison. Back in 2001. The restoration system was only used in juvenile programs because it was considered to be fit for young offenders who had committed petty crimes (Zernova, 2013). In the last few years, the country began to use a restoration system on offenses committed by adults. Since then restoration system has been incorporated in all justice practices that involve all types of crimes committed by adults. In Austraria, the system was first used by New Service Wales police service.
In my country restorative judicial system encourages punishment toward he offender, employ a mechanism that rehabilitate the offender, develops mechanisms that help victims, use restorative approach as a means of reconciliation and finally promotes the use of education to discourage potential offenders. The system is used to solve crimes committed by young offenders in all territories and states in Australia. It enables young offenders to take the responsibility of their actions and understand how their behaviour has affected the lives of other people. To understand how the restorative justice systems will be applied matters such as the seriousness of the crime, the harm inflicted on the victim, the level of the crime involved and the number of warnings given to the offenders are considered (United Nation, 2016). Usually the process involves bringing the offender and the victim together. Thereafter police and facilitators try to solve the harm caused by the offender and device the mechanisms of how to punish the offender. The punishment may involve doing community service, undergoing counselling services, donating to charity or even apologizing to the victim. Offenders who are not willing to comply with the outcome are then subjected to the conventional criminal justice system.
I intend to use the restorative system to support victims, giving them a voice, advising them to express their views, making them to take part in resolution process that benefits them. For the last twenty years the criminal justice system has been encouraged to put more emphasize on the interest and needs of those who have been affected (United Nation, 2016). I would ensure that the justice system gives opportunity to victims to make decisions that determine their expectations in the due process. I would ensure that the relationships damaged by crime have been repaired. This will be achieved by ensuring that all parties have arrived at a consensus. Dispute resolution, peacekeeping and rebuilding relationship is considered as a key way of achieving justice to the victim.
I intend to denounce all forms of criminal behavior and reaffirm community morals. Denouncing certain behaviors is an important way of restoring justice system. I would also identify issues that lead to crime and report it to the police to take action. The restorative process should be open that promote genuine discussion that can lead to prevention of crimes. For examples criminals are known to come from the same area because it offers them an opportunity to engage in crime (United Nation, 2016). Finally, I would encourage all the parties involved to take responsibilities, especially on the side of the offenders. This is because the restorative process is designed in simple way that allows offenders to take responsibility for their behavior.
Conclusively, the restorative justice system has been used all over the world to ensure that justice has been served not only for the victim but also for the offender. At first it was used in cases involving underage. However, in the last few years, it has also been used in cases involving adults. The restorative justice system should be encouraged because it gives a fair chance for both the victim and the offender to be heard. Offenders who are not willing to accept the outcome made in the restorative justice system, they are subjected to undergo the conventional justice system.
United Nation. (2016). Restorative justice programmes. Retrieved from https://www.unodc.org/pdf/criminal_justice/Handbook_on_Restorative_Justice_Programmes.pdf
Zernova, M. (2013). Restorative justice. Aldershot, Hants, England: Ashgate.