Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Restorative Justice

This is powerful:

A good example (of Restorative Justice) is the work that one London borough (Enfield) is doing with young people who are getting into trouble and are on the periphery of the gang culture. Sessions are held by the community (ex-gang members, parents or friends of people who’ve lost their lives, and older people living on estates). These sessions are held in the austere surrounding of a Crown Court, out of hours, where the community members talks about the impact that gangs have had on their lives. 

These tough youngsters are asked to explain why they behave like they do; you can hear a pin drop. Most of these young people are not bad or evil; they’ve walked down the wrong path, made poor choices, and are quietly grateful for being given a helping hand to recover their lives. And believe me when I say that there is nothing more impactive than a Grandmother explaining the horror of losing her grandson to a knife, and the daily pain she is living through, and then opening the door of her house to these kids and committing to be there for them, no matter what the time of day or night. These are the quiet leaders in our communities.

from an interview between Matt Bird of the Cinnamon Network, and Commander Tony Eastaugh of the Met.

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