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Canberra, Australia

Hinchey, John. The Canberra Restorative Justice Model: from pre-court diversion to parole
The Australian Capital Territory is a self governing territory of Australia, situated in Canberra. In the restorative justice world Canberra is known for its pre-court diversion program - the subject of the RISE research conducted by Braithwaite, Strang and others. In 2004, Canberra has chosen to go the Full Monty and extend its pre-court program by making restorative justice available at every stage of the criminal justice process, in both the children and adult jurisdictions. The paper and presentation are descriptive, canvassing the legislative and administrative framework chosen to support the model. Pre-court diversion still remains an option for less serious crime and court based and post sentence options are available for all offences that proceed through to court. In the Canberra model a central unit ensures consistency of practice and by including police personnel, allows police to continue their role in diversionary conferencing. The Ngambra Court - or circle sentencing court - has also been established for indigenous offenders. The legislative victim-centric solutions chosen to support the model are discussed. Abstract courtesy of the Centre for Justice and Peace Development, Massey University,
Sherman, Lawrence W and Strang, Heather. Restorative Justice and Deterring Crime.
The authors contend that experiments in reintegrative shaming by the Canberra police (Australia) indicate that offenders are more deterred from repeat offending after experiencing the restorative justice approach of diversionary conferencing than after court proceedings. These preliminary findings of the Canberra police conferencing program are especially important because some critics have called shaming conferences a "soft option."
Sherman, Lawrence W and Barnes, Geoffrey. Restorative Justice and Offenders' Respect for the Law
Sherman and Barnes review a new practice by the Canberra police. The new method, called "diversionary conferencing" in the ACT, was introduced in 1994 and has been under evaluation since mid-1995. It adopts principles of restorative justice and seeks to condemn the crime but not the criminal. Conferences work by diverting confessed offenders from court to a far more intense, personal (and lengthy) alternative. Influenced also by juvenile justice reforms in New Zealand, these conferences represent a radically new approach to community policing because they mobilise a community of concerned citizens around the offender, the victim, and the crime.

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