The Effectiveness of Restorative Justice Practices on Victims of Crime: Evidence from South Africa
Restorative justice is a holistic philosophy that has become increasingly popular in reformist criminal justice debates and criminological research. However, there is some debate as to whether its programs adequately address victims’ needs. To this end, this paper analyses the effectiveness of restorative justice practices on victims of crime. Drawing on my interviews conducted with victims of crime and legal experts in South Africa, the findings of this study offer support for the effectiveness of a restorative justice approach to addressing victim satisfaction. Restorative justice can enable the needs of victims to be more fully considered during the criminal justice process. This is very different from contemporary criminal justice, which has often effectively excluded victims from almost every aspect of its proceedings despite its continuous reform to protect and promote victims’ rights.
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