The Scottish Government has published a new Restorative Justice Action Plan, which sets out its vision for high-quality restorative justice services, and the steps required to meet the aim of widely available provision across Scotland by 2023.
The aim is to have restorative justice available across Scotland to all those who wish to access it, and at a time that is appropriate to the people and case involved.
Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said:
We are committed to developing a smarter justice system, with the needs of victims at its heart. Developing a restorative justice system will support those victims who choose this route, where appropriate alongside the criminal justice process, to move past traumatic harm. It can also make those who have caused harm better understand the impact of their actions, thereby helping to reduce the likelihood of more harm.
Iriss recently commissioned an evidence summary on the topic of restorative justice, which shows that it can reduce the likelihood of further offending, assist people recover from the harm of crime, and provide greater satisfaction with the justice process. Written by Steve Kirkwood at the University of Edinburgh, it gives a really good overview of what restorative justice is, evidence of its impact and implications for social work. Read the summary.