Victims’ Rights and Restorative Justice

Victims’ Rights and Restorative Justice

The Delaware Center for Justice supports policies and practices that strengthen victims and rebuild communities. DCJ believes in the power of restorative justice practices and that the victims’ voices must be a key part of the legal system process.

When a crime is committed against an individual the stress, anxiety, and fear can stay with the victim for many years after the initial incident. Restorative justice emphasizes repairing the harm caused or revealed by criminal behavior through a cooperative process that engages all involved parties. DCJ understands that many individuals who cause harm frequently have themselves been victimized in the past. DCJ recognizes this cyclical nature of victimization and supports policies that address root causes of crime.

DCJ believes that government and nonprofits should coordinate with each other and within communities to assure that comprehensive services are available to respond to the needs of crime victims and to ensure that crime victims are treated with fairness, respect, and dignity – free from intimidation and further harm throughout the justice process. Specifically, DCJ believes in victim-offender mediation, victim assistance, ex-offender assistance, and programs that assist with restitution and community service.

Forgiveness and healing are natural parts of the legal system and must inform our policies and practices. We believe having trauma-informed and trained first responders, defense attorneys, prosecutors, and judges will help move this process forward.

Visions of Justice 2018: Victim-Centric Models for Addressing Crime

Our annual Visions of Justice conference has provided education on critical issues in justice reform for over a decade. Below are links to very useful reports and resources on visions of restorative justice and models for addressing crime: 

Get Involved

Please consider getting involved in this critical work. We have full-time, intern, and volunteer positions available and would love to hear from anyone who is passionate about seeing real change for those affected by the legal system in Delaware.