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Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services
 

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Restorative Justice

Restorative Justice

While Restorative Justice is typically used as an alternative to involvement in the justice system, Restorative Justice approaches to resolve conflict and build peace help youth give back to their communities and build stronger neighborhoods regardless of justice system involvement. Community conferencing, peace building and healing circles are specific practices that can be employed to further strengthen communities and are among strategies that have been shown to improve public safety.  DYRS incorporated restorative circle practice for committed youth in both the facilities and in the community to also reduce the chances that a youth faces further consequences within the justice system. Consistent with Positive Youth Justice, the Credible Messenger Initiative implements Restorative Justice practices that enable youth to learn important skills in conflict resolution that empower them to be leaders in their communities. These skills include self-reflection, being respectful of others, and reducing future conflict. Restorative practices assist youth in building empathy and understanding how harm affects themselves and others.