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Wait 'til eight: An essential start-up guide to NOMS RJ scheme implementaiton

Jul 15, 2013

from the foreword of the guidance document:

The NOMS Restorative Justice Capacity Building programme is potentially one of the most signiicant developments to occur in the criminal justice system in recent years. It gives the opportunity to embrace the restoration of both victims and offenders and to put it at the heart of the way in which communities seek to ameliorate the impact of crime. For this reason there is a need to follow the evidence base and design schemes with care, in a measured and consistent manner. This guide is part of that process.

The guide has been funded through the NOMS Restorative Justice Capacity Building programme and prepared by the Thames Valley Partnership, which is responsible for the Thames Valley Restorative Justice Service (TVRJS).The materials aim to give start-up guidance on the minimum foundations that need to be in place before trained staff canbe expected to undertake effective and sustainable RJ Conference practice. 

Wait 'til Eight is based on the 12 years’ practice experience of TVRJS’s delivery of community and custody based RJ conferences. It offers a framework for a methodical approach to planning and implementing an RJ scheme.

Organisational culture and local context will provide the backdrop to the development of any scheme and for these reasons this guide should be seen as a springboard and not a prescription.It is designed to signpost and inform thinking at the introduction and early implementation stages. It has a generic relevance for RJ conference implementation in whatever setting and at whatever stage of the criminal justice process.

Eight checklists identify the critical issues that need to be addressed in order to create the minimum‘supportive environment’ necessary to nurture the development of effective RJ conferencing practice. Each checklist is supported by accompanying text and includes examples of pro-forma that have been designed and reined over the years andwhich have been found to be functional in a TVRJS context.The material is capable of straight forward adoption, or revision and adaptation to it local circumstances.

In Thames Valley it has taken 12 years to tease out such matters and issues and it is hoped that TVRJS’s experience will help other schemes to embed RJ conferencing into local criminal justice systems. This start-up guidance will lay the foundations of a robust scheme, ensuring quality and sustainable provision.

This guide derives its name from the key message it seeks to convey,i.e. that it is essential to address these eight critical sections before sending staff for training. This approach maximises the prospects of sustainability and success in delivering RJ in Probation Trusts and Prison Establishments.


Download the full document. 

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