PCC awards Restorative Justice contract to local community groups
Devon and Cornwall’s Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon and Cornwall Alison Hernandez has announced that the contract for delivery of the new restorative justice service supporting victims of crime is being awarded to 2 local community groups.
The Commissioner’s funding ensures that from 1 October 2017, Shekinah* and Make Amends** will provide access to restorative justice for victims of crime across the peninsula, supporting individuals to cope and recover from the effects of crime by giving them a voice.
Restorative Justice brings those harmed by crime or conflict and those responsible for the harm into communication in a safe way, enabling all those affected by a particular incident to play a part in repairing the harm and finding a positive way forward. This is an exciting new scheme building on the work of the current providers. The funding provided by the Police and Crime Commissioner will ensure that frontline police officers and their colleagues in other parts of the criminal justice service can support victims by giving them the chance to meet or communicate with their offenders to explain the real impact of crime up on them. The new scheme will also hold offenders to account for what they have done and helps them to take responsibility and repair the harm caused.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to help people affected by crime to come to terms with what’s happened and move on with their lives.” said Ms Hernandez
“Restorative justice can be about bringing the offender and victim together face to face or accepting a letter of apology as a way to help too.
“Formal justice is still there for those people who need it, but, where the focus is more about getting on with their lives, this is a good system.
“I’m delighted that we have two community based organisations to lead on this work, and I look forward to the full service being available from October.”
*Shekinah - Provides opportunities for people in recovery or seeking recovery. This may include recovery from homelessness, drug and alcohol issues, offending behaviours or mental ill health. They have a range of projects across a number of locations and provide a safe space for people to develop their skills, regain their self-worth and go on to live independent and fulfilling lives.
**Make Amends – Delivers restorative approaches to help to heal the harm caused by crime conflict, ASB and other harmful action