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Restorative Justice and Apology

Articles and other resources on the nature and meaning of apology in restorative justice.

Developing ethical identities in young offenders through restorative justice practice in Australia
from the article by Sharon Hays and Hennessey Hayes in Queensland University of Technology Law and Justice Journal: It is clear that, at least on some occasions, young offenders perceive being coerced - whether directly or indirectly - into apologising to the victims. There are three conclusions that arise out of these observations.
Acting Up
My class was in computer class. We were talking when he asid quiet. We disrespected him, and he's a new computer teacher.
Journalists should 'meet people affected by their inaccurate stories'
from the article by David Brindle in the Guardian: Journalists should be compelled to meet people they have written inaccurate and misleading stories about, the outgoing chair of the Charity Commission has said. Dame Suzi Leather, who has faced sustained hostility from some national newspapers, said any new system of press regulation established after the Leveson inquiry should include provision for a form of "restorative justice".
Great story - The Power in the word "Sorry"
 This is a great story about Restorative Justice. I don't like the old adage of, "It's no use crying over spilt milk." because it denies [...]
3rd party recipients of apology letters
Hi, I have a brother in prison who would like to send an apology letter to the family of his victim. I have heard there [...]
Rena captain and officer sent to jail
from the article by Matt Bowne and Paloma Migone in the Marlborough Express: ....The men responsible for causing New Zealand's worst maritime environmental disaster by grounding the Rena off Tauranga's coast have been sentenced to seven months in jail. ...."There was substantial ecological damage to marine wildlife and seabirds, the food resources of the indigenous people who reside on the coast, the incomes of those whose living is made from the sea ... and an entire community was sent into shock."
Rena captain to residents: 'Sorry'
from the article by Kiri Gillespie in the Bay of Plenty Times: Rena's captain and navigational officer have visited Motiti Island to apologise to residents for grounding the cargo ship on Astrolabe Reef. When Rena grounded on October 5 last year, Motiti Island was transformed from a pristine green paradise to an oil-soaked mess. Residents were shocked, saddened and angry.
Cultural Conundrums: Sorry to have made you apologize
from the article by Kate Elwood in Daily Yomiuri Online: In the late 1980s and early 1990s, comedians Mike Myers and Dana Carvey often appeared in the guise of two wacky yet lovable metal-loving loafers named Wayne and Garth. At the start of each "Wayne's World" sketch on NBC's Saturday Night Live, Garth greeted Wayne saying, "Party on, Wayne!" and Wayne replied, "Party on, Garth!" "Party on" soon became a popular catchphrase for glib salutations. I hadn't thought of Wayne's World or the revelry-advocating refrain for a long time, but recently a spontaneous adaptation of it--"Sorry on!"--popped into my head when thinking about a recent experience of someone I'll call Carey.
prison culture
Of course official prison culture and social structure in most settings are resistant to change toward more restorative approaches. Please, James Church, elaborate on what [...]
Changing prison culture
I have worked in Prisons for well over half of my life. It took some time but my opinion of punitive vs restorative responses have [...]
"Immature humanity"
Reply to John White's comment...John's comments are so to the point - I AM SO impressed. "Immature humanity" - yes indeed. Some years ago I [...]
Good and Bad victims
Of course, there's no such thing as 'good' or 'bad' victims (or 'good' or 'bad' offenders, for that matter). In psychotherapy there is a saying [...]
Apologies and forgiveness
Lorenn, Thanks for your comments and sharing your experiences. I like the ideas of restorative questions in helping people work through the development of an [...]
apology letters
Hi Lynette & Lisa, Thanks for this interesting post and comments. I agree with you both. A court ordered apology does not mean much to [...]
all victims deserve restorative justice
Thank you for re-posting Howard Zehr's blog commentary. I am in complete agreement with his views here. We do judge crime victims as he described. [...]
Good and bad victims?
from Howard Zehr's entry on Restorative Justice Blog: It is tempting for restorative justice advocates, consciously or not, to differentiate between “good” and “bad victims.” Good victims are those who are ready to forgive and reconcile; bad victims are those who are angry, punitive and unforgiving. “How do we react to such victims?” asks Heather Strange in her essay, “Is Restorative Justice Imposing Its Agenda on Victims?” (Critical Issues in Restorative Justice, Zehr & Toews, eds.). “Probably most often by dreading and discouraging the one and encouraging and welcoming the other,” she observes. Strange goes on to suggest that “bad” is often a function of the emotional harm they have suffered and that they may have the most to gain from an encounter.
apology letters & restorative justice
Lynette, I really appreciate your perspective here. This was indeed unfortunate. What it shows me is that there are certain processes that should take more [...]
Apology letters
by Lynette Parker As I was browsing through Twitter feeds I saw a comment about an offensive apology letter. Of course I clicked the link to read the letter. I had to agree with Victim Support UK; the letter was offensive and disrespectful. I also agreed with the Twitter comment from Why Me?, “The problem with That Letter is there was no preparation first.”
Apologies, their use and meaning: A course module
from the paper by Hershey Friedman and Linda Weiser Friedman The apology is an important marketing and management tool. Knowing how to apologize correctly is a skill that must be mastered and should be studied. The purpose of this paper is to provide needed course material for instructors preparing a course module on this relatively new and very topical subject. This paper is targeted to educators and anyone who wants to understand the fundamentals of apologies. Possible relevant disciplines include: marketing, management, medicine, hospital administration, nursing, business law, and philosophy of law, among others. The paper includes examples of apologies, some good and some not, drawn from real life as well as from television and film. A reading list is provided as well. [Authors' abstract]
Apologies, their use and meaning: A course module
from the paper by Hershey Friedman and Linda Friedman: The apology is an important marketing and management tool (Friedman, 2006). Knowing how to apologize correctly is a skill that must be mastered and should be studied. The purpose of this paper is to provide needed course material for instructors preparing a course module on this relatively new and very topical subject. Possible relevant courses for this material may be found in disciplines such as: marketing, management, medicine, hospital administration, nursing, business law, and philosophy of law, among others.

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