On the Defensive: The Need for Restorative Justice

On the Defensive: The Need for Restorative Justice

January 21, 2014 | by Anthony Cotton | Wisconsin Law Journal

In this OP-ED, Anthony Cotton, Vice President of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, discusses the need for restorative justice, an alternative to traditional criminal justice measures that focuses on the needs of the victim, the offender, and the community. Cotton discusses restorative justice’s potential to heal a victim’s pain and aid in the process of offender rehabilitation.

In this OP-ED, Anthony Cotton, Vice President of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, discusses the need for restorative justice, an alternative to traditional criminal justice measures that focuses on the needs of the victim, the offender, and the community. Cotton discusses restorative justice’s potential to heal a victim’s pain and aid in the process of offender rehabilitation. While the Wisconsin Constitution was amended in 1993 to give certain privileges to crime victims such as compensation and retribution, restorative justice goes beyond this by offering victims the opportunity to speak directly to their offender in a mediated setting outside of a courtroom.