Sociology of Corrections Paper Example

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  7
Wordcount:  1844 Words
Date:  2022-12-12


The interest in restorative justice started as early as the 1990s, and it has been growing very fast in various countries as many studies, discussion groups, and programs on the subject have flourished. The use of restorative practices increased due to the failure of excessive use of incarceration, punitive justice model, and also the alienation of victims together with lack of response to victim`s needs. Also, the emergence of this way of thinking can be attributed to the failure of the justice system to solve crimes in indigenous societies and the over-representation of native persons in correctional facilities. Restorative justice involves the application of several principles on its programs in criminal matters as outlined by the Economic and Social Council of United Nations. This paper aimed to support the use of restorative justice in all the cases and built its relevance from the literature of various article on the same subject. Corrective action is not just one thing, it is a diverse practice to respond to crime, to resolves disputes and it is used in juvenile and criminal cases after people have admitted to an offense. It involves diversion from formal court process to simple actions taken in parallel with the decisions of the court as it is done through meetings that bring together victims and offenders at any stage of the case process even after the offender has been released from prison (Bolitho 2012). The restorative practices are very popular with governments who want to package correctional programs and a range of police responses as restorative. The paper uses literature from pre-approved journals such as Restorative justice, Punishment & Society, Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice, and British Journal of Criminology.

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Restorative Justice Should be Adopted in All Cases

Restorative justice gives a more constructive and positive approach to the process of restoring the relationship between the person who committed an offense and the victim of a crime and also as a community as a whole. Hence it should be used in all cases. It does not eliminate the reaffirmation and denunciation of social norms, and it makes justice more sensitive and more compassionate to the suffering of the communities and the individuals who are affected by the crime. Restoring justice promotes positive values such as healing for the victim together with the offender, forgiveness, fraternity, accountability, and respectful dialogue between the parties which took place in the discussion and the community input. The practice is the best antidote to punitive policies and also the best alternative to the adversarial system of justice.

From the viewpoint of its aims, restorative justice plays a vital objective of giving the victim an opportunity of having a more significant role. The role is getting full information concerning the reasons for and the circumstances underlying the offense, and allow the victim talk and receive symbolic or tangible compensation and to regain power and independence that was taken away from them by the crime. In the Journal of Restorative Justice, restorative practices are meant to impact the offenders positively by confronting them with their responsibilities and the results of their actions (Aertsen, Parmentier, Vanfraechem, Walgrave, & Zinsstag, 2013). Granting them the opportunity to redeem themselves and repair the damage their actions caused by the offended and allowing them to find a solution to their problems.

Furthermore, restorative justice practices have various benefits that if used in all cases will be of significant impact. Studies show that those victims who go through therapeutic justice programs are mostly satisfied and also victims who attend family conferences. As victims consider these practices as fair, and the experience from the programs helps them reduce the fear they had on the crime and even reduce their anger on the offender and increase the probability of the offender in making reparations for the damages caused. Generally, offenders and victims feel they are granted a chance to solve their problems and develop more constructive solutions.

The programs should not only apply to property offenses and young first-time offenders but in all cases, as the measures used to assist in casting a broad penal net in areas which are not always within the jurisdiction of courts and in other hand are mostly helpful to disadvantaged groups. They are regarded as a means for the offenders to get rid of the criminal process, and a way of making sure that the justice system does not become overloaded (Strang et al. 2013). To quickly reach a solution, sometimes the victim may not be involved in the mediation process which is an indirect approach which can provide financial compensation and keep procedure not to be complicated.

Moreover, restorative justice leans toward injury reparation on the victim; the restitution ranges from apology to a forgiveness request, and from compensation that is tangible to symbolic reparation. Studies show that victims are well off with the agreements that were made and in contrast to the traditional justice; restorative justice resolves conflicts and propagates on rebuilding the fruitful relationship between the wrongdoer and the victim.

From the other viewpoint, the robust movement which is mostly punishment in the processes of criminal justice policy is becoming unstable in terms of financial and many jurisdictions are advocating for restorative justice through rehabilitation as the best option in offender`s management. As outlined in The Journal of Punishment and Society, punishment belongs retributive justice in which when an individual wrongs justice requires discipline in which the offender is made to suffer a pain proportionate to the one inflicted on the victim as justice demand equity of suffering (Simon, & Sparks 2012). In journal punishment is defined as unpleasant, an imposition, and a burden of some sort. Punishment from retributive paradigm are fines, imprisonment or secondary addition to the crime itself and the sentence are intended to hurt the offender, and it does not benefit the victim, while restorative justice theory is based on the perception of fairness and respect for the offender. Therefore, conferences are used to over support to both the victim with the wrongdoer and to emphasize on communication. Research shows that restorative justice is desired by about half of victims in different cases, assisting victims who prefer to take part, and wants to reduce their desire for revenge and also eradicate undue stress that has come to completion due to the victim`s experience (Bosworth. 2012). It gives the victims the opportunity to tell the offenders concerning the exact effect caused by the crime, and can be answered by the offenders and to receive an apology.

Restorative justice practices are interested in promoting reconciliation and healing than measure doses of punitive pain for a crime. It demands not the balancing of pain but requires determined action to overcome anxiety and restore dignity, well-being, and dignity of offenders and the victims.

A victim can request the case to be solved by restorative justice approach to enable the offender to understand and comprehend how their action has negatively affected the lives of the victims. Also will know how it changed lives of people in the process, also gain more information that will help put the crime behind them and looking forward to coming into terms and do away with their ordeal, and experience. It reduces the number of crimes that offenders do and saves financial resources for the criminal justice system in offering restorative justice service.

The Restorative Justice Consortium (RJC) as shown in the British Journal of Criminology considers themselves as the national voice of restorative fairness with their aim being to ensure every individual under conflict to resolve it by corrective process, and it disseminates information concerning restorative justice to the public, and they support their members who offer therapeutic services. The journal reveals that in the United Kingdom restorative justice reduces by an average of 27% the number of crimes done by offenders. More so, restorative justice in the UK saves the criminal justice system finance of about 8 dollars for every 1 dollar which is spent delivering the process.

Studies on restorative justice show that the process assists in minimizing post-traumatic stress in victims and motivates the offenders to keep themselves away from further criminal behavior. The practices of restorative practices have a defined and clear history in the whole concept about restorative justice practices as the IIRP endures to come up with a comprehensive outline to be practiced with the theory focusing on extending the hypothesis and concept of restorative practices compared to its first ideas as used in criminology. In the British Journal of Criminology, restorative justice is receiving more study and practice which are directed at realizing and structuring social discipline. In the British Journal of Criminology, restorative justice has been used in cases such as minor behavior which is anti-social and includes criminal damage and also in more severe crimes such as burglary and assault (Lawrence. 2012). The participation of the victim is voluntary, and offenders must admit some that they are accountable for the crime they committed. Stages have been engaged to encourage restorative justice in the system of criminal justice, and it has helped the system in reducing various crimes in the UK. The Journal outlines some of the recent restorative practices incorporated to criminal system which is the introduction of police cautioning restorative justice and offering of 75 % of all youth crimes victims' participation in the restorative justice process. In the year 2001, the Home Office in the UK carried out their fourth report about their Crime Reduction Program. From the earlier reports, the office highlighted the rewards and benefits, the expectations of participants as a result of restorative practices. The fourth report focused on whether the restorative practices minimizes re-offending and gives value for money. University of Cambridge professor Lawrence W Sherman came up with encouraging, optimistic, and constructive publications concerning restorative justice through his projects from 1986 to 2005. It was found that victims who complete the restorative justice process showed high ability to go back to work, to sleep well at night, and resume to their normal daily activities (Lawrence. 2012). Additionally, no verbal or physical violence rose between the victims and offenders who went through the restorative justice process.

Many countries have implemented the use of restorative justice by putting in place various methods like circle penalizing to deal with internal violence specifically. The supporters of the processes trust that these practices are significant to these home-grown communities because of their various levels about their effectiveness and personal regard they need for a corrective court system. As in the Canadian Journal of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Canada utilizes restorative justice to solve juvenile sexual offenses as they offer the best solution as it is a practical and fair way of making the wrongdoer to reimburse the harm triggered by their crimes (Meyer & O'Malley 2013).

In the criminal justice system, practical considerations which are in particular the court's institutions cannot operate in a corrective manner during the court system operations with the judge imposing sanctions. It does not work therapeutically even if the judge giving out the judgment has the influence of the values of restorative practices as the structure of po...

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