Behind the Walls and Beyond: Restorative Justice, Instrumental Communities, and Effective Residential Treatment



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      Gordon Bazemore, Ph.D., is Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice and Director of the Community Justice Institute at Florida Atlantic University. His primary research interests include community and restorative justice, juvenile justice, youth policy, victimology, corrections, and community policing. Dr. Bazemore is the author (with Mara Schiff) of Juvenile Justice Reform and Restorative Justice: Building Theory and Policy from Practice (Willan Publishing), and has recently published articles in Justice Quarterly, and Crime and Delinquency.


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      Jay G. Zaslaw is the Director of New Business for Securicor New Century, a private juvenile justice services company. He has written treatment programs in the private sector for 10 years and worked as a juvenile probation officer and supervisor in Arizona for 21 years. He has also written on restorative justice and substance abuse treatment, juvenile offender domestic violence, and young women in the juvenile justice system.


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      Danielle Riester, a former research associate with the Balanced and Restorative Justice (BARJ) Project at the Community Justice Institute at Florida Atlantic University, is currently the Associate Director of the Jane Addams Juvenile Court Foundation in Chicago, Illinois. She has worked with youths, communities, schools, and criminal justice entities on restorative justice and related juvenile justice issues.

Department of Criminal Justice Professor, Department of Criminal Justice Florida Atlantic University University Tower 220 S.E. 2nd Avenue Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

Securicor New Century 2649 Barefoot Creek Circle Navarre, FL 32566

Jane Addams Juvenile Court Foundation 969 East 60th Street Chicago, IL 60637


Although restorative justice principles and practice have been applied extensively in community-based juvenile justice settings, implementation in residential treatment facilities has been far less common. We describe recent experimentation and possibilities for broader application to disciplinary infractions, the response to harm and crime, promoting community and citizen input, “community building” for conflict resolution skill development and changing the culture of facilities, and reentry. We conceptualize three “communities” as most relevant to addressing needs of incarcerated youths, their victims, and support groups, and then discuss theoretical frameworks and empirical research supportive of restorative practice in this context. Challenges to implementation of restorative practice, compatibility with other treatment and disciplinary agendas, and concerns about preserving the integrity of the model are also considered.