Restorative Justice: What's in it for Corrections

This page is archived material and is no longer updated. It may contain outdated information and broken links. The material presented on these pages is the product of five regional symposia held on restorative justice between June 1997 and January 1998.

  1. The cost of corrections¾ due largely to increasing prison construction¾ is skyrocketing and, in some states, surpasses the amount of taxpayers' dollars spent on higher education.
  2. Many corrections and their allied justice professionals feel that the current system of corrections "doesn't work," which can lead to higher levels of staff frustration, cynicism and burnout. Restorative justice programs offer promising alternatives to the "status quo."
  3. Restorative justice practices provide innovative, sound approaches for some offenders that do not require incarceration, and are cost-effective when compared to the expenses related to prison/jail construction and maintenance.
  4. Restorative programs and processes hold offenders accountable to their victims and communities for their criminal and delinquent actions.
  5. Important partnerships are formed with allied justice professionals¾ law enforcement, prosecutors, defense attorneys, the judiciary and courts¾ that can enhance more coordinated, cost-effective and consistent programs and services.
  6. Crime victims, who have been traditionally suspect and critical of corrections, are viewed as "clients" of corrections, and their involvement usually improves their opinions of and relationships with corrections.
  7. National, state and local victim service providers work closely with corrections in the restorative justice model, and form partnerships that view the rights and interests of victims, offenders and the community as equal.
  8. Restorative justice responses to critical incidents and workplace violence provide greater opportunities for victim involvement, offender accountability, and correctional community support for developing a fair and appropriate response to staff victimization.
  9. The community enhances correctional operations and programs as volunteers and in advisory capacities, expanding opportunities to initiate and expand programs for offenders, as well as for their victims.
  10. Model restorative justice programs currently sponsored in community and institutional corrections have been enthusiastically received by offenders, victims and correctional staff, and have been positively highlighted by the news media.
Date Created: December 5, 2007