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Family, Victims and Culture

Youth Justice in New Zealand

Restorative Justice Classics Series

by Gabrielle M. Maxwell and Allison Margaret Morris

Foreword by Jarem Sawatsky

Imprint: Wipf and Stock

250 Pages, 7.63 x 10.75 x 0.50 in

  • Paperback
  • 9781608999064
  • Published: September 2010

$30.00 / £23.00 / AU$41.00


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The concept of restorative justice was in its infancy when New Zealand introduced Family Group Conferences as a way of responding to young people who offend. This novel approach is now recognized as the first practical example of a restorative justice process for decision-making in a Western criminal justice system. The research study reported here observed 200 family group conferences in 1990 and interviewed the families, victims, and young people who participated in them. The findings show that giving young people, families, and victims the opportunity to decide on how best to heal the harm and restore the lives of those involved can work in ways that was never possible in the traditional justice system. 

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