Has crime affected you? Do you wish your voice could be heard? Restorative Together can help.
Restorative Together helps people affected by crime to communicate with the person or people responsible. This communication can take the form of letters, shuttle communication, or even face-to-face meetings.
We have already helped people of all ages in cases of:
- Bullying (face-to-face and online)
- Neighbourhood disputes
- Criminal damage
- Racial abuse
- Physical assault
- Car accidents
- Sexual assault and abuse
- Manslaughter and murder
Restorative justice (RJ) is a voluntary process and, to be most successful, it is necessary for those who have done wrong to admit what they have done.
It can help:
- Repair some of the harm that has been caused.
- Give those who have been harmed a chance to express how they feel and to ask questions.
- People who have caused harm to appreciate how they have affected others and to reflect on their behaviour.
- All those involved to move on from the experience.
Restorative Together conference April 2017 - an overview of restorative justice and how powerful it can be
Restorative Together conference July 2018 - what restorative justice means to different people in Wiltshire and Swindon
Some quotes from people who have used restorative justice.
- Although RJ was not right for the victims at this time, the process helped me a lot.
- I felt better after the meeting.
- I got answers to the questions I really wanted answered, and it was good to hear things from his perspective. It was a good experience; the facilitators created a safe, controlled environment (in the face-to-face meeting), which helped settle my fears.
- I felt a sense of relief.
Restorative Together is a team of fully trained restorative justice facilitators, many of us volunteers, who also have a vast depth of knowledge and experience in other fields.
The team is headed up by a full-time Restorative Justice Coordinator and work closely with Victim Support, Horizon Victim & Witness Care, the Police, the National Probation Service, BGSW Community Rehabilitation Company, Wiltshire Council, Swindon Borough Council, Swindon and Wiltshire Youth Offending Teams and housing associations.
Restorative justice is purely voluntary. Nobody can be forced to take part. Two trained facilitators contact all the parties involved. These facilitators meet with all the parties separately and, if they are happy to proceed, each person is asked to sign a consent form.
Anyone can decide, at any time in the process, to stop their involvement. Other separate meetings are held to find out peoples' needs and wishes. This information is communicated (with permission) to the other parties involved.
Thoughts, feelings and questions can be passed on and answered by letter, or in a shuttle process or, ultimately, in a carefully prepared face-to-face meeting. Some restorative justice processes can take many months, others just a few weeks.