Restorative practice in the community

Restorative practice in communities resolves conflicts and disputes before they escalate into crime and is an effective approach to dealing with antisocial behaviour and neighbour disputes.

It enables people to understand the impact of their behaviour on others. It delivers effective outcomes owned by the local community and creates stable, positive community environments.

Restorative approaches in communities incorporate a range of models including community mediation, police and community support officers using restorative skills on the street and neighbourhood justice panels – an innovative, community-based delivery model being used across England and Wales.

Neighbourhood justice panels are a form of restorative justice conferencing that involves trained volunteers from a local community facilitating meetings between victims and offenders for low level crime and antisocial behaviour.

Referrals can come from police, local authorities and housing associations, among other agencies.

Restorative practice can be used to build strong communities and to ensure that disputes and disagreements are dealt with positively and constructively.

It can contribute to lower levels of crime and disorder and give communities an active role in resolving disputes where they do emerge.