Examples of selective observation in criminal justice

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Often continue their criminal tendencies once released (Bloom, 1999). A more satisfying system of justice is needed, and with this in mind, reformers in the field of penology are looking at alternative forms of achieving justice. A restorative response provides one such option to the traditional retributive justice system which prevails in Canada today. The philosophy of restorative justice varies greatly from that of a retributive system, but although it challenges us to rethink whiteface is all about, perhaps there are situations appropriate for each of these approaches in a modern Canadian criminal justice system.

This research paper will define the concepts of restorative and retributive criminal justice, and describe the foundation upon which each is based. The goals, processes, and desired outcomes associated with each system will be explained in detail. Strengths and weaknesses from perspectives of victim, offender, and community, will be reviewed. Canadian Criminal Justice Today – Does It Meet the Needs? Crime means breaking the rules of the land. In Canada the “rules” are the laws set forth by the Canadian judicial system. Age-old human needs are such that justice must be seen to be done in response to violations of the law.

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Expectations include such things as punishment, deterrence, behavior change, safety of citizens, victim compensation, and victim satisfaction (Bloom, 1999). These aims of the justice system are not, however, always realized in daily practice. What would be the ideal outcomes of a “perfect” justice? In terms of the offender, one might hope to see effects such as appropriate punishment, zero recidivism, absolute deterrence, ongoing liaison and follow-up, and reintegration into society (RACE website, 2006). Victims would be actively involved in the justice process and ideally, offer forgiveness.

An ideal system WOUld provide healing for all parties (victim, offender, and community), and all would experience a sense of closure and satisfaction. Although there is little likelihood of such a perfect system ever evolving, incorporation of restorative justice principles into the present system could offer outcomes closer to the “ideal” ones mentioned. Retributive Justice The traditional, formal criminal justice system in Canada today, is based on retribution. Retributive justice provides reason for the existence and limits of law, as defined in the Criminal Code of Canada.

The offender deserves enmeshment because he/she has offended the laws and moral code of the land. An individual’s conduct is classified as a violation of a law and the offender becomes accounTABLE to the authorities for the misbehaver. As a result, the authority figures and the offender are in an adversarial relationship ( O’Connor, 2006; RACE website, 2006). Accountability is equated with suffering, and a systematic infliction of punishment justified on the grounds that the criminal has disrupted the social order, ensues. Offenders are defined only by their crimes.

Victims are defined only by their material ND psychological losses and are not directly involved in the process of responding to and resolving the misbehaver (Bloom, 1999; O’Connor, 2006; RACE website, 2006). Retributive justice originated in the time Of the Norman Conquest, when feudalism was developed and servants swore allegiance to their king. This made any criminal offence a crime against the state rather than a crime against another person. The state needed to declare that it was powerful and did so by means of the punishment that it inflicted on an offender.

Therefore, punishment was carried out because it needed to be done – cold, thou emotion, and out of consideration for the state’s need for power (O’Connor, 2006). Retributive justice today, still reinforces the “power” of the state. To adopt a position that the punishment “is deserved” does not always reflect that the offender deserves punishment but more that the law requires that it be assessed. To punish is simply carrying out a moral obligation in seeing the law come to completion. There is no expectation that the punishment will accomplish any purpose or consequence. As such, its a kind of suffering that the offender must go through.

In cases of wrongdoing, an individual who deserves certain benefits has lost them, while someone who does not deserve those benefits has gained them. Punishment imposes a penalty that in some way is seen to balance the harm inflicted. It is viewed as a debt that the wrongdoer owes his fellow citizens. Retributive justice aims to restore both victim and offender to their appropriate positions relative to each other. It attempts to balance the scales of justice. It requires that the punishment fit the crime and that similar cases be treated alike. Offenders deserve blame and punishment in direct reapportion to the harm inflicted (Mammies, 2003).

The retributive approach to criminal offenders is simply to punish them and leave whatever regret c remorse is theirs up to them (Bloom, 1999). A retributive justice system transfers the responsibilities for affixing bal and punishment from the victims to public bodies such as courts of law These institutions, using trained judiciaries are best equipped to establish penalties according to the rule of law. They aim to effectively bring off to justice by giving them the punishment they deserve. The process of retributive law seeks to answer three questions: 1) What laws were ) Who did it? And 3) What punishment do they deserve? (Bloom, 1 999) traditional court system caries out this process in a methodical manner police first assess blame through a process of investigative fact-finding, focusing on facts, to the detriment of feelings and emotions. Focus is o offender, which establishes the rationale for punishment. The victim AR community often seem forgotten. A level of punishment is next establish based on actions of the offender. There is an unspoken understanding for each case there is one winner and one loser, thereby establishing a adversarial situation.

Someone always loses. This system often establish! Sense of alienation for both victim and offender. The stigma of charges oftentimes removal from the community to serve a sentence can alien offender. Victims are also often isolated by the process, complaining the they have no voice in the system (RACE website, 2006). Victim related anxiety, depression, and self-destructive behavior as a result of unrests’ emotional trauma sometimes occurs (Bloom, 1999). Restorative Justice Restorative justice is a growing movement that is gaining popularity a! Option to a strictly retributive system.

It is a response to wrongdoing the souses on offender accountability, problem solving, and creating an CEQ voice for offenders and victims. Restorative justice encourages dialog responsibility for past behavior while at the same time focusing on futz problem-solving and offender accountability (RACE website, 2006). The philosophy behind the restorative approach is to transform wrongdoing healing the harm, especially to relationships, that is created by harmful behavior. Those involved in restorative justice processes are the person who caused the harm (offender), the person(s) harmed (victim), and the affected community (Savannah, 1998).

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