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Symbolic restitution – community sanctions in the practice of the Hungarian Probation Service Dr. Erzsébet Hatvani – Director General of the Hungarian.

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Presentation on theme: "Symbolic restitution – community sanctions in the practice of the Hungarian Probation Service Dr. Erzsébet Hatvani – Director General of the Hungarian."— Presentation transcript:

1 Symbolic restitution – community sanctions in the practice of the Hungarian Probation Service Dr. Erzsébet Hatvani – Director General of the Hungarian Office of Justice “European Best Practices of Restorative Justices in the Criminal Procedure”conference “European Best Practices of Restorative Justices in the Criminal Procedure” conference Budapest, April 2009.

2 Reasons of the complex penal reform After change of regime: Changing life conditions Crime growth Decrease in the sense of security, increasing fear of crime Decrease in the sense of security, increasing fear of crime Penal responses are not efficient enough

3 Aims of the complex penal reform ● follow the ideas of the double track criminal policy ● follow the ideas of the double track criminal policy ● promote applicaton of diversionary measures/ community sanctions ● promote applicaton of diversionary measures/ community sanctions ● restoring the harm caused to the community and to the victims ● restoring the harm caused to the community and to the victims ● decrease the fear of crime ● decrease the fear of crime ● cost-effectiveness ● cost-effectiveness

4 Concept of community sanction Concept of community sanction /Recommendation No. R(92)16/ Recommendation of the Council of Europe /Recommendation No. R(92)16/ ● Implemented within the community ● Prescribes conditions and obligations for the offender (controll element) ● Supports re-integration of the offender (support element) ● Supports re-integration of the offender (support element) ● Implemented by an organisation set up by law (Probation Service) ● Implemented by an organisation set up by law (Probation Service)

5 Community sanctions ● Main aim is not the deprivation of liberty ● It does not isolate the offender from the community, he/she remains a responsible member of the society ● It does not isolate the offender from the community, he/she remains a responsible member of the society ● Instead of passive, negative attitude: suffering a controll technique, it requires positive, active attitude from the offender: carrying out obligations, tasks, behavioural rules, mediation, restituiton) ● Instead of passive, negative attitude: suffering a controll technique, it requires positive, active attitude from the offender: carrying out obligations, tasks, behavioural rules, mediation, restituiton) ● it builds on the integrative resources of the community ● constant, personal contact with the implementing authority (Probation Service, mediators)- use all appropriate resources existing in the community ● constant, personal contact with the implementing authority (Probation Service, mediators)- use all appropriate resources existing in the community ● non-compliance with the conditions and obligations has legal consequences ● non-compliance with the conditions and obligations has legal consequences

6 Link between community sanction and rehabilitation Recommendation of the Council of Europe /Recommendation No. R(2000)22./ One direction of the penal policy in future is to bring reparative elements to community sanctions Victim-offender mediation could be seen as a type of community sanctions and measures

7 Obligation within the community - Community service (free work for the community) - Special activities (the goal could be reparation) - Different (group learning) programmes - Alcohol and drug related rehabilitation - Sanction to visit attendance centre, certain social care service - Complete action plan - Banishment: certain places, professions

8 Restorative justice –horizontal principle Mission of the Hungarian Probation Service The objective of the Probation Service is the reduction of the risk of re-offending. The probation officer is charged with the application of community based criminal sanctions. The work of the probation officer is to protect the public through the implementation of community supervision and the oversight of the offender. Through supervision and support, the probation officer re- inforces the potential for the re-integration of the offender into society. The work of the probation service is built on the principles of restorative justice. It aims to ensure that the perpetrator faces up to the consequences of their crimes by making good the damage caused through mediation between the offender, the victim and the community.

9 Direct practice Victim-Offender mediation Symbolic restitution Restorative approach

10 The direct form of restorative approach - Mediation -Since 2007 in Hungary -Both in cases of adults and juveniles -Applicable both in pre-trial (prosecution) and trial phase of criminal procedure -If restitution is fulfilled the criminal procedure will be terminated (or the punishment will be mitigated) Case numbers: 2007 – cases 2008 – cases

11 Symbolic restitution Punishment has a symbolic restitution element Symbolic restitution is not necessarily the result of appliaction of a restorative practice Restitution is fulfilled not directly to the victim (there’s no particular victim, there was no mediation in the procedure) Those affected by the crime are not necessarily involved in the decision, but the victim can choose this way of restitution e.g. in the mediation Offender ‘s consent is required The way of restitution is not in direct connection with the crime It is an activity carried out for the benefit of the community fulfilled primarily at civil organisations

12 Conditions of symbolic restitution Offender takes responsibility for the crime, active attitude Social inclusion, positive attitude of the community Possibilities for symbolic restitution Offence = fear in the community, decreasing quality of life Symbolic reparation = reintegration/success of reparation

13 Possibilities for symbolic restitution during implementation of community sanctions I. Community service One of the main punishmentOne of the main punishment Imposed by the CourtImposed by the Court Probation Service is responsible for the implementationProbation Service is responsible for the implementation Free work for the benefit of the communityFree work for the benefit of the community E.g. Activities to preserve and improve environment of settlementsE.g. Activities to preserve and improve environment of settlements Work for the community = restorationWork for the community = restoration Placation and the process of placationPlacation and the process of placation

14 Possibilities for symbolic restitution during implementation of community sanctions II. Social inquiry report, Pre-sentence report Possibility for proposal of behavioural rules that require restitution E.g. Establishing behaviour rules when accusation is postponed: Criminal Procedure Act § (2) The public prosecutor may require the suspect to fulfill the following obligations: a) partially or wholly compensate the aggrieved party for the damages caused by the crime, b) arrange in some other manner for restitution to be given to the aggrieved party, c) pay a financial allowance for a specified purpose or perform work in the interest of the community (restitution for the public),Criminal Code. 82.§(6) ( 6) Apart from the behaviour rules contained in Subsection (5), the court or the prosecutor may prescribe additional ones, with particular regard to the nature of the crime, the extent of damage and the social integration of the perpetrator.

15 Possibilities for symbolic restitution during implementation of community sanctions III. Behavioural rules that require restitution Pilot project: Restitution programme in the capital city- Capital Office of Justice (September April 2008) Project supported by the National Crime Prevention Committee

16 Restitution programme Capital Office of Justice Probation Service – Jóvá Tett Hely Probation Day Centre ELTE ÁJK Kriminológiai Tanszék Rügyecskék Foundation Gyermekvilág Ágyszínház Foundation Ferencváros Family Support Service (FECSKE) Csillebérci Szabadidő Kft.

17 Restitution programme During the project 20 juvenile and adult offenders fulfilled restitution as behavioural rule of probation supervision 16 boys, 4 girls (between ages)

18 Gyermekvilág Ágyszínház Foundation Visiting children in hospitals in Budapest Providing programmes for the children (playing, storytelling) Training: How to play together Improving communication skills

19 Rügyecskék Foundation Cleaning forests, collecting garbage Mapping roads and pathes in the forests Repairing damages

20 Ferencváros Family Support Service (FECSKE) Helping children with learning problems Different activities in a youth club Free time activities with children in elementary schools

21 Csillebérc Szabadidő Kft. Different activities around a youth camp: Cleaning parks Repairing furniture

22 ELTE Faculty of Law – Department of Criminology Acting as peer mentors 13 mentors in this project

23 Aims Aims of the project: Strengthen participation of community in the implementation of community sanctions Promote social inclusion Motivations of organisations involved in the project: Getting help for their work They find important to deal with young people They can as act role models for the juvenile offenders (especially those people who work voluntarily in the organisations)

24 Continuation Development of the programme : New places: Zöld Ház Probation Day Center in Miskolc Involving new organisations


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