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Restorative Justice

Restorative justice in New Zealand courts is a process that focuses on repairing the harm caused by crime or conflict by involving those affected, including victims, offenders, and the community. Instead of solely focusing on punishment, restorative justice seeks to address the underlying causes of the harm and promote healing and reconciliation.

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Our Facilitators
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Restorative Justice Facilitator / AOD Practitioner

Sasha Saies
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Restorative Justice Facilitator / AOD Practitioner

Trey Henry

1

Referral

Court-referred restorative justice begins when a guilty plea is entered and there are people or organisations identified as being harmed.
Once we receive a referral from the court our process begins.

Prior to us making contact sometimes your lawyer, police, or a victim's advisor may ask you about your thoughts on the possibility of Restorative Justice.

You can expect that our facilitators will; be responsive to your needs and concerns, make sure that you are entering into this voluntarily, give you the space to talk and will prioritise safety.

3

Pre-Conference

In the next stage of the process, our facilitator working with you will arrange a time to meet with you to prepare you for a meeting with the other party. We encourage you to bring a support person with you to this meeting. The meeting will take place at a time and location that suits you. At this meeting, our facilitator will ask you about what happened and go over what might happen at a meeting with the other party. They will be preparing you for the meeting with the other party and assessing if it is safe and appropriate for a meeting to take place. This is an opportunity to tell your story privately with our facilitators, information from this meeting is NOT shared with the other party or the court.

2

Initial Contact

Our process will usually start with an initial phone call from one of our Kaimahi. Our Kaimahi will briefly explain the next steps of the process and ask you if this is something you want to do. The RJ process is completely voluntary, and you may decline at any stage.
If both the person charged and the person harmed and our Kaimahi agrees it is appropriate to proceed further then the Restorative Justice process begins.

4

Conference

If you decide to continue to the next step and our facilitators assess it as safe and appropriate to do so, they will arrange for a conference meeting to take place. This is a supported conversation between the parties. Our facilitators will be there to guide you, and keep the conversation safe and on track. You can ask for the meeting to stop at any point. It will take place at a neutral location.

After the conference, our facilitators will write a report, which is a summary of what was discussed. The report may include quotes but is not a full transcript. At times we may audio record the conference but this is only to recall the key points of the conference in order to write the report. This is not available to either party and is deleted immediately after the completion of the report. You will receive a copy of the final report and a copy will also be sent to the Judge and legal counsel.

The Judge will read this report before sentencing and may refer to the conference report content during sentencing.

Our facilitators will also check in with the parties after the conference. This will usually be a phone call to see how you are doing, check on the progress of any agreements made in the conference and assist you with accessing further support if required.

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