Paul Adams


Restorative justice has been a central tradition of justice in most, perhaps all societies prior to the emergence of the modern, central state power with its bureaucratic-professional systems and its emphasis on retribution, deterrence, and, sometimes, re- habilitation. Its revival as a new social movement in modern states offers a new paradigm for addressing the key questions in social work and social welfare of the relation of formal to informal systems of care and control, and of empowerment to coercion. Restorative justice may be defined in terms of process- one whereby all stakeholders come together to resolve how to deal with the aftermath of an offense and its implications for the future-or in terms of its core values-healing rather than hurting, moral learning, community participation and caring, respectful dialogue, forgiveness, responsibility, apology, and setting things right or making amends.

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