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Abstract from

The Ethics of Appropriate Justice Approaches: Lessons From a Restorative Response to Institutional Abuse

Alikki Vernon is a communications consultant, an accredited mediator and group conference facilitator.

The justice system and the practice of dispute resolution and conflict handling have co-evolved in recent decades. Practitioners face challenges that raise questions about (i) the justice system as a whole, and (ii) the range of processes currently available for resolving disputes and conflicts. These broader questions should be addressed by alternative dispute resolution practitioners, and by the designers and administrators of systems for appropriate dispute and conflict resolution. There have recently been several major initiatives in Australia in response to institutional abuse and sexual offending. This paper explores one of these initiatives: the Defence Abuse Response Taskforce. The Taskforce was established to address institutional abuse and sexual offending in the Australian Defence Force. It raised a number of important ethical questions and offers valuable lessons about appropriate justice approaches in complex matters. 

(2017) 35(1) Law in Context p139

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