Bridging divides and strengthening communities – Restorative Justice Week 2021
Restorative Justice Week begins on Sunday and is an ideal opportunity to showcase how the PFCC’s Essex Restorative and Mediation Service supports and helps people across our communities.
The Essex Restorative and Mediation Service works with people who have been involved in conflict, including criminal offences using restorative processes to communicate between people who have been harmed, and have caused harm, to allow them to work towards positive outcomes in a safe environment. The service is impartial and works to achieve a positive way forward for everyone involved.
As well as being very experienced with working with criminal behaviour, the team also work with anti-social behaviour, hate crime and domestic abuse cases.
The team consists of a service delivery manager, two RJ co-ordinators, an RJ administrator, and a support staff member. They oversee the running of the Essex Restorative and Mediation Service, including supporting and recruiting our facilitators, liaising with service users and other organisations, arranging mediation / RJ conferences and delivering training. They are all experienced, accredited RJ and mediation practitioners.
There are also 42 Restorative and Mediation Service facilitators who volunteer their time to support victims of crime in Essex.
Roger Hirst, Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner for Essex, said: “This week, we’re highlighting the restorative justice services available to Essex residents.
“Restorative Justice can be effective in showing the responsible person the real impact of their actions by putting a face to their crime. It also gives the victim and their families the chance to tell the offender how they feel about what has happened, ask for an apology and get answers to their questions.
“It can be used alongside the criminal justice system and can be really powerful for both victims and perpetrators. I’m proud of the team and the volunteers and the difference they make to people’s lives.”
People interested in finding out more about how restorative justice could help them can pop along to free sessions being held at the Witham Hub in Newland Shopping Centre on Monday 22nd November and Friday 26th November. Between 10 and 2pm on both days, an accredited civil mediator from the service will be available for people to chat to and find out more.
Emma Goddard, Restorative and Mediation Service Manager said: “Restorative justice is a process which brings offenders and victims into some form of communication, allowing victims to ask question, discuss the impact of the crime and get some form of closure. It also allows offenders to understand the harm that’s been caused and make amends, which has been proven to reduce re-offending.”
Find out more about the Essex Restorative and Mediation Service at www.restorativeessex.co.uk
People interested in volunteering with the service can also find out more via the website or email [email protected]