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Victim-Offender Dialogue

Articles on meetings of prisoners with their actual victims while they are in prison.

How restorative justice changed a grieving family’s opinion of a hit-and-run driver
from the article by Douglas Quan in Postmedia news: There was no ambiguity in how Coral Forslund felt when the man responsible for her sister’s hit-and-run death was finally sentenced to prison. She “hated him.”.... But nagged by lingering questions — namely, was he remorseful for what he did? — Forslund, of Langley, B.C., reached out to a little-known federal program called Restorative Opportunities that arranges meetings between victims and offenders after sentencing. During their session in a B.C. prison, the offender broke down and Forslund heard him say for the first time that he was sorry.
Martin Wright on Va. OKs bill to let violent crime victims meet with death row inmates
PS. See also American case histories from the organization Victims' Voices Heard: Susan L Miller, 'After the crime: the power of restorative justice dialogues between [...]
Martin Wright on Va. OKs bill to let violent crime victims meet with death row inmates
Lorraine G, you might be interested in Lesley Moreland's book 'An ordinary murder'(Aurum Press 2001).She eventually saw her daughter's murderer, with help from the prison [...]
Lorraine Gilmartin on Va. OKs bill to let violent crime victims meet with death row inmates
I totally empathise with Lorraine Whoberry. I live in the UK and am being refused a meeting with the murderer of my partner, although we [...]
Crime victims find healing through restorative justice
From the article by Jasmin Lopez on KALW : Dionne Wilson's husband, a San Leandro police officer, was killed in the line of duty seven years ago, but she says it took her a long time to find a way to really heal. “For many years, I carried around so much vengeance and hate. I realized at a certain point I had nothing left. I had no more tools. I engaged in a lot of self-destructive behavior. I tried to buy my way out of my grief; I tried to drink my way out for a short period. Thankfully, I didn’t take that too far. And I just didn’t have a way to move past being embroiled in the moment,” says Wilson.
Cumbria prison governor's bid to cut the rate of reoffending
from the article on in-Cumbria: Restorative justice is being rolled out at Cumbria’s only prison in a bid to cut reoffending rates. The system, which sees criminals facing up to the consequences of their crimes, is the pet project of prison governor Tony Corcoran – who joined HMP Haverigg in January and is an expert in the field.
Cathyji on Review: The Final Gift: A documentary film
I have not yet watched the documentary nor read the book. But reading what happened to your brother and your personal process hit home for [...]
Austin Brown on What is justice? State program brings victims and offenders face to face
Andrew is a model of the possibilities within the justice system. There is hope here. I know Andrew, and I remember that time in our [...]
Unite offering prisoner mediation service at Kirklevington Grange Prison
from the article by Sandy McKenzie in the Evening Gazette: ....Mr James said the focus was always on the long-term goal of reducing reoffending. “We’re also providing a victim-offender mediation service for those Kirklevington prisoners who agree to talk to their victims and where the victim agrees to meet the perpetrator. “This is one way a prisoner can show they have taken responsibility for their actions. They may want to offer an explanation to the victim. They may want to say sorry and agree a way to make amends.”
Presentations of The Final Gift
Thank you for your review of Therese Bartholomew's film, The Final Gift. I have seen this film shown at two different churches, with Therese there [...]
Review: The Final Gift: A documentary film
Reviewed by Lynette Parker The Final Gift-- A Documentary Film offers an intimate look into one woman’s journey of healing following the violent death of her brother. Therese Bartholemew’s brother, Steve, died after being shot in an altercation at a club. This film results from her attempt to understand what happened and its impact on their family. It chronicles their emotions and responses from receiving the first phone call to the sentencing to Therese’s meeting with the offender.
For Sonoma cyclist’s widow, meeting husband’s killer changed her life
from the article by Chris Smith in the Press Democrat: For many months, Patty O’Reilly plotted and rehearsed and steeled herself for the perfect act of vengeance on the man who killed her husband on a rural Santa Rosa road in 2004.
Denver woman feels the power of restorative justice after son murdered
from the article by Kevin Simpson in the Denver Post: ....When legislation last year cleared the way for a pilot program in restorative justice with the Colorado Department of Corrections, Evans — who had testified on behalf of the measure — embraced the opportunity to go first. She and her older son Calvin Hurd, who was 6 when gunshots peppered the car where he sat sleeping with his brother, began more than six months of preparation for a direct dialogue with Johnson. Part of that involved revisiting the crime. Evans had driven with her two children to a northeast Denver duplex to pick up her grandniece because there had been a drive-by there the previous night. She left her sons in the car.
Chickens and chats form basis of new prison life
from the entry on This is Corwall: ...."It may sound gimmicky, because this is supposed to be a prison and a place of punishment, but the people I'm charged with looking after are some of the most troubled and troublesome members of society," he said. "Their individual backgrounds are horrendous in terms of not having a father figure, and a lack of education and the opportunities that you and I experienced." Through treating prisoners with "decency" and giving back a sense of respect, staff are already seeing a drop in incidents of bullying and drug abuse. A large number of prisoners have volunteered to sign up to a scheme to donate a small weekly sum to the Victim Support Service.
Meeting the murderer: Profile of victim-offender dialogue facilitator
from the entry on Grits for Breakfast: See an interesting article from the Christian Science Monitor about a boat builder from Maine who runs a non-profit facilitating victim-offender dialogue (VOD) between violent criminals and their victims or their families, which is an idea derived from "restorative justice" models.
Advance Mediation Paper
Great story, I'm using it in my advance mediation paper!
Aboriginal community liaison
I would like to hear more about the restorative justice an the victim and the violator i work for parolees to reinstatement in to community [...]
let crime victims choose restorative justice
Eva-Lynne, responding your comments above, you make some good points. However, what is clear to me is that crime victims increasingly are asking for the [...]
Mutual Trust
I read this article with interest Mr. Ali, the victim of a violent assault, stated:  "Notts Probation Service claim to be advocates   of restorative justice, [...]
Crime victims choose restorative justice
What an excellent article you have re-printed here. It points out a new trend that appears to show that crime victims are at times denied [...]

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