Seeking justice for survivors of sexual violence: Recognition, voice and consequences

McGlynn, Clare; Downes, Julia and Westmarland, Nicole (2017). Seeking justice for survivors of sexual violence: Recognition, voice and consequences. In: Zinsstag, Estelle and Keenan, Marie eds. Restorative Responses to Sexual Violence: Legal, Social and Therapeutic Dimensions. Routledge Frontiers of Criminal Justice. Routledge, pp. 179–191.



It is widely accepted that conventional criminal justice systems fail to meet the needs and interests of sexual violence survivors. As a result, there is widespread debate over the possibility of developing and introducing more innovative means of securing justice, including a range of restorative approaches. Such approaches are being considered both as a means of re-shaping or re-orientating the conventional criminal justice system, as well as for their potential to provide alternative justice responses beyond the conventional system. However, discussion regarding the potential of restorative approaches to offer some measure of justice for sexual violence survivors has largely proceeded at a conceptual level due to the limited opportunities for restorative justice to be used in this field. While it is vital that we engage in thoughtful analysis of the principles and concepts underpinning any use of restorative approaches in cases of sexual violence, the debate can make only limited progress in an empirical vacuum.

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