Restorative Justice

Restorative Justice is a voluntary process, facilitated by trained practitioners, which enables those harmed by crime and those responsible to communicate or meet in a safe and controlled way to address the harm caused.

The process is tailored to the needs of the participants and can empower victims by giving them a voice, while holding offenders to account for their actions and help them to take responsibility.

The process can provide those harmed by crime with the unique opportunity to gain answers and enables all parties impacted by crime to contribute towards the recovery.

Is this service right for a victim?

Restorative Justice is a voluntary victim-led service providing the opportunity to communicate with an offender where there may not have been an opportunity to do so before. Restorative Justice can be explored for all offence types however the crime must have been reported to the police and there must be an identifiable victim and offender.

Part of the Restorative Justice process is to address the harm caused, so there must be an admission of responsibility for the harm caused.

The Participant’s safety is paramount and thorough assessments are carried throughout the process to determine whether Restorative Justice is appropriate and safe to proceed. Both parties must be willing to engage with the process for any form of communication to take place.

What are the benefits?

  • Empowering those harmed by crime by giving them a voice
  • Provides an opportunity to gain answers to questions
  • The process can help those impacted by an incident of crime to find closure and move forward
  • Offenders recognising the impact of their actions, taking responsibility and making amends
  • Participants can withdraw from the process at any time, any stage
  • In some cases, the process can help prevent re-offending

Who will support victims with this?

The Victim and Witness Hub have a trained Restorative Justice Specialist and experienced volunteer RJ Practitioners. Our RJ Specialist and volunteer practitioners support those harmed by crime to decide the most appropriate restorative approach along with facilitating any communication, including any face-to-face meetings with the offender, should it be appropriate and safe to do so.

Participants are welcome to have a friend, family member or professional also provide support them throughout the process.

How is Restorative Justice delivered?

Restorative Justice can take many forms and is based around the needs of the participants. The process can involve direct and/or indirect communication with the offender via letter sharing, shuttle mediation and face to face conferencing (meeting with facilitation). The process will take as long as required and no communication will take place unless assessed as safe and appropriate to do so by trained practitioners.

Taking the next step?

To learn more about Restorative Justice and how the process could help with recovery from a crime, call the Victim and Witness Hub on 0800 781 6818 or email