Monday, June 07, 2010

Public Safety Canada Report on Impact of Restorative Justice on Participants' Health

The most recent issue of the Weekly Checklist of Government of Canada Publications lists a late 2009 report from Public Safety Canada on Restorative Justice’s Impact on Participants’ Psychological and Physical Health.

Restorative justice programs involve the voluntary participation of the victim of the crime and the offender in discussions. Restorative justice requires wrongdoers to accept responsibility for their actions and to be actively involved in improving the situation. Wrongdoers must make reparation to victims, themselves and the community.

Examples of restorative justice programs include:
  • victim offender mediation;
  • family group conferencing;
  • sentencing circles;
  • consensus-based decision-making on the sentence; and
  • victim offender reconciliation panels.
From the abstract of the Public Safety Canada report:
"Research on restorative justice has cited many positive benefits for participants. For example, restorative justice processes are satisfying to both victims and offenders. However, despite references made to positive impacts on participants’ well-being, few studies specifically examine the impact of restorative justice processes on participants’ psychological health and physical health using specific health indicators. This study utilized a quasi-experimental, repeated-measures design to assess changes in psychological and physical health in 92 participants (50 victims and 42 offenders) who experienced a restorative justice process. Results indicated that the majority of participants did experience positive changes from pre-program to post-program. Future research directions and limitations are discussed."
The Weekly Checklist includes a listing of book and serial titles which have been released during the previous week by the Parliament of Canada, federal departments, and Statistics Canada.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 6:11 pm


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