Presentation on theme: "ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING"— Presentation transcript:
1 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeASSESS the role of alternative methods of sentencingALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCINGIncludingCircle SentencingRestorative Justice
3 Circle Sentencing In Nowra, Mounty County, etc Deciding only on thePUNISHMENT(you HAVE to say you are guiltyand take responsibility)In Nowra, Mounty County, etcNot an “easy option” (punishments are often harsher)
4 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING Circle SentencingIncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeThe Board of Studies requires you to be able to assess the ROLE of Circle Sentencing. So, we’ll look at both the outcomes AND what ROLE Circle Sentencing can play…So what are the ACTUAL outcomes?‘Does circle sentencing reduce Aboriginal reoffending?’, BOCSAR (2008)“the evidence presented here suggests that circle sentencing has no effect on the frequency, timing or seriousness of offending”So, yeah, not real good. BUT………….
5 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING Circle SentencingReducing reoffending is not the only GOAL of Circle Sentencing (it’s actually down the bottom of the list of the goals of Circle Sentencing).So does it have ANOTHER ROLE? Does it do anything else?IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative Justice“If it strengthens the informal social controls that exist in Aboriginal communities, circle sentencing may have a crime prevention value that cannot be quantified through immediate changes in the risk of reoffending for individuals”‘Does circle sentencing reduce Aboriginal reoffending?’, BOCSAR (2008)So, it hasn’t necessarily failed if it is doing other (longer-term) things, which means that it still has a place in our justice system (THAT’S an assessment)
6 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING Circle SentencingIncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeBut despite these questions…Circle Sentencing expanded in NSW (SMH 2010)Circle Sentencing isn’t exactly the same as it was when it started in Nowra. It was evaluated in 2008 (the year the BOCSAR report came out) and a few improvements were made.So, the NSW government is bringing it to a few more regional areas… and Blacktown…
7 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING Restorative JusticeThe problem that a lot of people have with our criminal justice system is that the victims are not very involved in the prosecution of the crime. That’s why they’re usually not really satisfied with the outcome, even if the offender ends up in jail.IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative Justice‘Restorative Justice’ is the name given to any program where the offender AND the people affected by the crime (especially the victim, but also families, youth workers, etc) come together to try to work out what should happen.The idea is for the person to show remorse (“I’m sorry”), to make amends (“I’ll fix it”) and, sometimes, show how they’ll avoid doing it again (“I’ll change; I’ll go into a program”).If you forgot what it is in an exam, just look at the word – restorative, like, RESTORE, like, fix things back to the way they were. As opposed to the idea of retribution, which the rest of the criminal justice system seems to be based on…
8 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING ‘Youth Justice Conferencing’ Restorative JusticeIncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeFor juveniles…The Young Offenders Act 1997 (NSW) allows police OR the Children’s Court to send young people to‘Youth Justice Conferencing’For those who are 18+…There was a trial of ‘Forum Sentencing’ since 2005 in Liverpool and Tweed.
9 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING Does it reduce recidivism? Restorative JusticeDoes it reduce recidivism?IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeNope.For year olds…The way that Youth Justice Conferencing works in NSW is NO MORE EFFECTIVE THAN THE CHILDREN’S COURT in reducing reoffending - Youth Justice Conferencing vs Children’s Court: A comparison of re-offending, BOCSAR (2012)For year olds…A trial of Forum Sentencing for young adults didn’t go so well Does Forum Sentencing reduce the risk of reoffending? BOCSAR (2009) and studies of similar programs in NZ and the UK found little or no effect on recidivism.
10 ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCING But there are other advantages… Restorative JusticeBut there are other advantages…IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeAdvantages of YJC:TIME: If the POLICE refer a young person to YJC, their case is over much more quickly than courtYJC vs Children’s Court: A comparison of time to finalisation, BOCSAR 2012MONEY: YJC is more cost effective than the Children’s CourtYJC vs Children’s Court: A comparison of cost-effectiveness, BOCSAR 2012VICTIM SATISFACTION: 88% of victims said they would recommend YJC to other victimsParticipant Satisfaction with YJC, BOCSAR 2012PUBLIC SUPPORT: 87% of people surveyed agreed that the victim should have this chance to talk to the offender about how the crime affected their lifeRestorative Justice Initiatives: Public Support and Opinion in NSW, BOCSAR 2012
11 Restorative Justice So, now we ASSESS the ROLE of Restorative Justice… ALTERNATIVE METHODS OF SENTENCINGRestorative JusticeSo, now we ASSESS the ROLE of Restorative Justice…IncludingCircle SentencingRestorative JusticeSo, what ROLE should it have in our criminal justice system?It COULD be useful, IF the government forks out some extra money to make sure that the participants are put into effective rehabilitation programs as well. We could also tackle the social issues leading to recidivism (i.e. after the program, the guy’s still broke and unemployed…).The public actually likes restorative justice, even though they don’t think it will stop a lot of offenders from reoffending.NSW’s Chief Magistrate Graeme Henson said he’d prefer most non-serious cases to go to a Youth Conferencing-like situation (‘Let victim have say on penalty’, SMH, 2010)