RJ Conferencing educational DVD   

Used in the training of Victorian Family Group Conferencing Convenors, this two DVD set includes:
  • an overview of the program,
  • a conference re-enactment, and
  • in depth interviews with participants.
VARJ produced in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services this high quality educational DVD Package profiling the Victorian Youth Justice Group Conferencing program.

The two-disc set includes: a documentary overview of the program, a conference re-enactment, and in depth interviews with Conference participants and youth justice professionals.

The DVD Package has been an invaluable resource for students, teachers and practitioners with an interest in Conferencing and restorative justice more generally.

The DVD package was produced in 2007 by the Victorian Association for Restorative Justice at the request of the Victorian Department of Human Services.

Disc 1: Education An Introduction to Youth Justice Conferencing in Victoria (20 minutes) Edited footage of a Youth Justice Group Conference (30 minutes) Interviews with Group Conference participants: young people victims of crime supporting family members

Disc 2: Professional training Interviews with professionals: youth justice court workers group conferencing convenors judicial officers police informants victim support agency workers a legal practitioner.

Piloted in Victoria in the mid-1990s, Group Conferencing was expanded in 2003, then extended statewide from 2006. The Youth Justice system in Victoria deals with young people between 10 to 17 years old who have been found guilty of a criminal offence. Because intensive penalties can actually make it more likely that a person will be further involved in crime, appropriate and effective diversion from formal criminal justice helps combat crime and strengthen community safety.

The Children's Court diversion options for young people, include sending a young person to a Youth Justice Group Conference. A Youth Justice Group Conference brings together a group of people affected by the actions of young people who have pleaded guilty or been found guilty of an offence, excluding certain serious offences. Participants can include: the young person, with legal representation, family members and other persons who are important to the young person; the victim(s) of the offence, and others important to them; a victim's representative and/or other professionals; and the informing police officer. Participants discuss what happened and how it has affected them and other people. They identify how they can repair some of the harm and minimise the likelihood of re-offending.

  Group Conferencing continues to: reduce the frequency and seriousness of re-offending by young people; reintegrate young people into the community; increase victims' satisfaction with the criminal justice process; involving victims, family and other community members in decision-making; raise the young person's understanding of the impact of their offending; provide an opportunity for the young person to accept responsibility; divert a young person from more intensive supervisory court orders; reduce the total costs to the Juvenile Justice system of intervention.

Victorian Association for Restorative Justice     Email: varj@varj.asn.au                                    Design by 34FiveSolutions.com
PO Box 475, East Melbourne, Melbourne Victoria 3002
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