Resolution Online

Read our latest posts and join in the discussion on a range of subjects related to restorative practice.

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Restorative practice in schools - making it happen

29 February 2016

A couple of weeks ago the Peer Mediation Network published an open letter to Nicky Morgan, the secretary of state for education, calling for more action to promote the use of conflict resolution and restorative approaches within schools. The letter argues, rightly, that all young people will have to deal with conflict both at school and in later life, and that giving them the skills to do so positively and constructively should therefore be a higher priority.

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We need a plan…

15 February 2016

Last week the Prime Minister gave a major speech on prisons policy. The following day the interim report of a review of the youth justice system, led by Charlie Taylor, was published. The previous week the Home Secretary gave a speech outlining future plans to expand the role of Police and Crime Commissioners. And earlier that week the Prime Minister had announced a review of overrepresentation and racial bias in the justice system, to be led by Labour MP David Lammy.

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Putting restorative parenting into practice

1 February 2016

A couple of weeks ago I went to Liverpool to visit the impressive King David Primary, which is in the process of becoming a restorative school. I met some of the staff and was fortunate enough to sit in on a training session with a group of pupils. They were great - quickly grasping the social discipline window while simultaneously laughing at my southern accent and demolishing every biscuit in sight.

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Can restorative justice help create problem-solving courts?

18 January 2016

Ever since the Justice Secretary visited the US last year, there have been frequent media reports highlighting his support for problem-solving courts. So what role, if any, can restorative justice play in the problem-solving model?

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Competition or collaboration – the future of the restorative practice field

4 January 2016

Happy New Year and welcome to my first blog of 2016. I hope that you all had a good Christmas break, which in my case brought countless opportunities to practice restorative parenting as my children squabbled over their presents.

It was also an opportunity to reflect – as we develop our work programme for next year – on where the restorative practice field has got to and what the future will bring. 

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Restorative justice and prisons - an opportunity?

14 December 2015

This will be my last blog before Christmas and as 2015 draws to a close it is an opportune moment to reflect on the past year. Clearly the general election in May was a standout moment. With many planning for a coalition, possibly between Labour and the Liberal Democrats, the election of a majority Conservative government was largely unexpected. It also brought – in another surprise – Michael Gove to the Ministry of Justice.

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The spending review and restorative justice

30 November 2015

Last week’s spending review was expected to herald unprecedented cuts across the justice system. Police budgets were expected to be slashed, while cuts in the Ministry of Justice’s budget of 30% or more were widely predicted. In the end, what emerged was nothing like as bad as many in the criminal justice world had feared.

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Have you got 2020 vision?

16 November 2015

As part of International Restorative Justice Week, this Wednesday we are holding our AGM and annual conference. This will be a chance to reflect on the work of the RJC and our members over the last year. But it will also be a chance to look forward. The theme of the conference is ‘2020 vision’ (pun intended) and we’ll be discussing what lies ahead for the restorative practice field over the next five years.

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Are we failing female offenders?

4 November 2015

A decade or so ago I worked at the Fawcett Society, a charity that campaigns for gender equality, leading their work to improve the criminal justice system for women who offend. It was a topical issue – Baroness Corston was in the process of conducting her government-sponsored review on this issue – and there was an emerging political consensus that the justice system simply did not work well enough for women. It was broadly agreed that prison, and particularly short prison sentences, were overused, with serious effects on the women’s own wellbeing as well as that of their families.

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Forgive and forget?

19 October 2015

Last week I met the new chief executive of the Forgiveness Project, now chaired by my predecessor at the RJC, Lizzie Nelson. Among other issues, we discussed how forgiveness relates to restorative justice. When asked by a friend when I first joined the RJC, this was something that I really struggled to explain. Eighteen months later it remains a challenging issue.