Victims of Crime Reform Bill to increase RJ referrals

The Victims of Crime Reform Bill will soon return for its second reading in the House. The Bill introduces a package of measures that are aimed at strengthening existing legislation to better provide for the needs of victims of crime. Of significance for restorative justice providers is the proposal to increase the number of cases referred to restorative justice. This is in recognition of the domestic and international research showing extremely high levels of satisfaction amongst victims who go through the RJ process.

In effect, what the Victims of Crime Reform Bill will do is to automatically refer a case to restorative justice where the offender pleads guilty, there is at least one identifiable victim and where an appropriate RJ service is available. The purpose of the referral is to allow inquiries to be made with the victim and to run a restorative justice conference where appropriate. This Bill has the potential to significantly increase the use of restorative justice and we welcome its progress.

If you are interested in knowing more, have a look at the report from the Justice and Electoral select committee.
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