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Exploring why victims refuse victim-offender mediation: Does saying no to VOM empower victims?

Reijerink, R (2018) Exploring why victims refuse victim-offender mediation: Does saying no to VOM empower victims?

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Abstract:Restorative justice aims to facilitate voluntary forms of mediation between victims and offenders of criminal offenses, which can have advantageous outcomes for both parties. Given the voluntary nature of victim-offender mediation (VOM), a subject of interest in the restorative justice field is why victims may refuse to participate in VOM and which effects such refusal may have on them. The current research investigated why victims refused participation in VOM, whether and how refusal was associated to the mediator’s approach, and to what extent victims experience a sense of restoring power as a potential effect of refusing VOM. Two studies were conducted in the Netherlands, with in-depth interviews among 11 victims who refused VOM on the one hand, and questionnaires that were linked to casefiles among 19 mediators on the other. Overall, the findings suggest that despite the various reasons for and effects of victims refusing VOM, victims have a strong need to be fully and clearly informed about mediation, such as about its influence on the court trial. VOM programs can further optimize their approach by giving victims the opportunity to be fully informed at all times. This will ultimately contribute to ensuring that victims find their access to VOM.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/75010
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