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The use of restorative justice in family violence cases with a focus on the possibility of victims being coerced or controlled to participate by the persons who harmed them

Coercive control Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) Perpetrator characteristics Family violence Restorative justice New Zealand

This report explores the risk of victims being coerced or controlled by perpetrators through restorative justice processes in cases involving family violence.

Key findings:

  • A restorative justice conference going ahead because of pressure on a family violence victim from their perpetrator is unlikely in cases dealt with by specialist restorative justice practitioners with significant experience of working with cases of family violence.
  • The researchers feel confident that if a perpetrator was exerting pressure on the victim to participate in restorative justice, an experienced restorative justice facilitator of family violence cases would be able to ascertain this at the pre-conference stage and would not proceed to a conference.
  • That is not to say that the risk of a victim being coerced or controlled to participate in restorative justice by a person who harmed them is not a real possibility. Situations in which this may occur are discussed in detail within the report.
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