Why Me? has recently published a report entitled
It draws together findings of Why Me?’s three-year youth justice project and identifies five key barriers for young people accessing Restorative Justice:
- Awareness and misconceptions: Many young people and young adults had never heard of Restorative Justice before and there were a lot of misconceptions about it.
- Terminology: When explaining Restorative Justice to young people and young adults, some of the terminology can be confusing, including the term ‘Restorative Justice’ itself.
- Provision: Once young people and young adults in particular have been made aware of Restorative Justice and their ability to engage in the process should they wish, there are a lack of formal processes through which they can access the service.
- Mistrust of services: One of the key findings from the work focusing on disparities in the uptake of Restorative Justice for young people and young adults from Black, Asian and other ethnic backgrounds was the lack of trust in services, particularly regarding the police.
- Real-world examples: There is a distinct lack of offenders who offer to discuss their own experience of Restorative Justice.
Based on the findings about the barriers preventing young people from accessing Restorative Justice, Why Me have developed 10 policy recommendations.