We are reimagining the response to intimate partner violence through the lens of restorative justice.
The Center for Court Innovation is working to reimagine the response to intimate partner violence through the lens of restorative justice. Not long ago, the prospect of such a response was dismissed by many as impossible. In 2016, we co-hosted a national roundtable on the intersection of restorative justice and intimate partner violence to engage directly-impacted people, advocates, policymakers, and practitioners. In 2018, we helped organize a follow-up convening in New York City.
That same year, New York City’s Mayor’s Office to End Gender-Based Violence offered us the opportunity to narrow our focus. The result of that work is ‘Using Restorative Approaches to Address Intimate Partner Violence: A New York City Blueprint,’ published in 2020. It’s a guide for the city and other funders on supporting restorative practices and practitioners on the ground, creating more options for restorative responses for those who are experiencing intimate partner violence.
The Center for Court Innovation learned about restorative approaches to crime and conflict from Native American practitioners in whose communities peacemaking has been practiced for generations. We are deeply grateful to our many Native mentors, especially from the Navajo Nation, who taught us about kinship in this work. We are also grateful to our trainers from across the country who taught us the foundations of circle practice and who walked us through the real-life challenges of implementation.
Published by the New York City Mayor's Office to End Domestic and Gender-Based Violence, this report outlines pathways for developing restorative and community-based approaches to intimate partner violence. It aims to expand the knowledge of restorative practices as applied to intimate partner violence and to promote the idea of increasing the options for survivors and their families.
Based on a national survey and five in-depth case studies, this study seeks to document how restorative approaches are being applied to intimate partner violence across the country. It concludes with a series of guiding principles and recommendations for the field.