top of page

Types of Services


Restorative Justice processes fall into two broad categories depending on the kind of communication that takes place between the parties harmed and the parties responsible:


Processes involving facilitated communication include the following:



A structured meeting between the person(s) who caused harm, those most affected and both parties’ select support people like family and friends and may involve affected community members, in which they address the harm of the incident and decide how best to repair it.


Neither counseling nor a mediation process, conferencing is a sensitive to those most affected, straightforward problem-solving method that demonstrates how people can resolve their own problems when provided with a constructive forum to do so. (O’Connell, Wachtel, & Wachtel, 1999)


Conferences provide those most affected and others with an opportunity to confront the person(s) who caused harm, express their feelings, ask questions and have a say in the outcome.The person(s) who caused harm hears firsthand how their behavior has affected others.


Conferences hold person(s)s who cause harm accountable while providing them with an opportunity to discard the “offender” label and be reintegrated into their community. (Morris and Maxwell, 2001). 


Participation in conferences is voluntary. A person(s) who causes harm qualifies for a restorative process by taking responsibility for their part of an incident.


After it is determined that a conference is appropriate and the person(s) who caused harm and those most affected have agreed to attend, the conference facilitators invite others affected by the incident – the family and friends of those most affected, the person(s) who caused harm and community members.


A restorative conference can be used in lieu of traditional disciplinary or justice processes, or where that is not appropriate, as a supplement to those processes.


The conference facilitator follows a set format or guide and keeps the conference on focus but is not an active participant.In the conference the facilitator asks the person(s) who caused harm to tell what they did and what they were thinking about when they did it.


The facilitator then asks those most affected and their family members and friends to tell about the incident from their perspective and how it affected them.The family of the one who caused harm, and friends are asked to do the same.


Finally, those most affected are asked what he or she would like to repair the harm done by this incident.Everyone else at the conference has the opportunity to contribute ideas for repair of harm and learning.


When agreement is reached, a simple contract is written and signed (O’Connell, Wachtel, & Wachtel, 1999).The person(s) who caused harm is then held accountable to completing the contract within the agreed upon time frame.


Processes include: Multi-Youth Conference, Victim/Youth Conference, Community Conference, Family Group Conference

Processes where no communication is not possible or appropriate currently include the following:


Involve only the person(s) harmed meeting with a facilitator to talk about their experience, short- and long-term reactions, strategies for recovery and access to other support services.

bottom of page