A crime is not just about breaking the law. More importantly, it is about damaging the relationships between members of the community. It creates an emotional wound that requires emotional healing. Restorative Justice is about restoring relationships!
Restorative Justice acknowledges the fact that harm has been done to people and relationships. This process allows the victim, the offender, and community members to talk to each other with the intent of finding a way to repair the harm done. During the process, offenders must take responsibility and display a willingness to be accountable for the harm done, not only to the victim, but to the community and to themselves.
Empathy (the ability to imagine what it would be like to be in the victim’s situation), along with sincerity and the willingness to face the consequences are essential for the offender to be successful in this process.