The Limits Of Restorative Justice Analysis

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I. Introduction Crime is running rampant in today’s society. Jails and prisons are overcrowded. These criminals need to be fed, clothed, and housed. But there is one aspect of these criminals prison stay that we may have been overlooking. That is the fact that most of them will be coming home one day. Only a small percentage of criminals are sentenced to life in prison. That means that the remaining criminals incarcerated now and in the future, will one day leave prison and need to re-enter society. In order for them to successfully be able to do so, there needs to be some programs or process in place to help them re-enter society and leave their criminal ways and become productive citizens. Restorative justice is a subject matter…show more content…
Arlene Gaudreault in her article “The Limits of Restorative Justice” discusses the problems with restorative justice especially as it relates to the victims in the process. Gaudreault says that the “aim of restorative justice is to give victims a bigger role,” but that the opposite usually happens. Gaudreault states that “victims are left on the sidelines in the very programs designed to give them a bigger role.” Victims get left out of the process or even sometimes may feel coerced into participating in the process. Also, according to Gaudreault there is not enough forethought put into the meetings. So a thorough “assessment” of what the victim would actually need to get out of the meeting is not done. Because the criminal justice system works on a time line of sorts, (cases are not supposed to be drug out in court forever) victims may not be “psychologically” ready to participate in such a…show more content…
In general, victims who have been involved in the restorative justice process report a positive outcome. Gaudreault even admits that restorative justice “has proven to be more effective alternative to prison or other forms of punishment.” When restorative justice is used properly, as it seemed to be in the McBride case, it can be an effective means of helping everyone move on from the crime. Patrice Gaines in her article “Restorative Justice is a Good Alternative to Incarceration” tells of her personal experience in the criminal justice system. According to Gaines, she feels her life would have turned out much different had she been offered the chance to participate in a restorative justice system, rather than be sent straight to prison for her drug crimes. Everyone seems to be able to agree that for certain crimes and for certain offenders and for certain victims restorative justice can

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