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Hate crime victims to face offenders

Mar 15, 2011

from the article by Jonathan Kalmus in the Jewish Chronicle Online:

Greater Manchester Police are to ask antisemitic offenders to face their victims.

A restorative justice scheme piloted across GMP since November gives hate crime victims the option of meeting the perpetrators to explain the impact of racism and receive an apology. Victims can also ask a representative to meet the offender, request community service as a punishment for them, or opt for criminal proceedings.

The radical scheme is said to offer more satisfaction to victims, reduce legal costs and result in swifter action. It can be dealt with by trained police officers outside of the courts.

....Analysis of a similar scheme run by the Cheshire force showed a dramatic drop in reoffender rates.

But one strictly Orthodox man who had been the victim of antisemitic attacks questioned whether people would want to see the offender again. "If I was offered it I would want to knock the person out, but I wouldn't really want to meet anyone who had victimised me."

Of the 243 crimes dealt with by restorative justice across the Greater Manchester force since November, 18 were racially aggravated.

Tuesday's meeting was the first of a series aimed primarily at creating closer ties between the police and Prestwich's strictly Orthodox.

Read the whole article.

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