Restorative Justice

at post-sentencing level supporting and protecting victims

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Promising Practices in the UK

By Marian Liebmann

In the UK there has been a recent resurgence of interest and government encouragement for restorative justice, and for the first time, an interest in work with adult offenders. This has been achieved through pressure on behalf of victims, so that they can have access to RJ if they wish, regardless of the age of their offender. This has resulted in a plethora of projects in probation and prisons, all with their own flavour. However, there is as yet little national coordination in the UK, so it is often hard to know exactly what is happening where. This presentation will therefore include practices that have happened, and practices that are currently happening, to highlight the different possibilities. The presentation will include five strands:

  • Service to the community

  • Victim awareness/ empathy

  • Victim-offender communication

  • Relationships in prison

  • Restorative prisons


Dr Marian Liebmann has worked at a day centre for ex-offenders, with Victim Support, and in the probation service. She was director of Mediation UK for 4 years and projects adviser for 3 years, working on restorative justice. Since 1998 she has worked freelance as a restorative justice consultant and trainer, with Youth Offending Teams, mediation services and prisons in the UK. She has also undertaken work in several African and East European countries, including training 180 victim-offender mediators in Serbia and Montenegro. She has given presentations at UN Crime Congresses in Thailand (2005) and Brazil (2010). She is also an art therapist and runs ‘Art and Conflict’ and ‘Art and Anger Management’ workshops. In 2005 she received a special merit award of the Longford Prize for her pioneering work in art therapy, restorative justice and mediation. In 2013 she was awarded an OBE for services to social justice through art therapy and mediation. She is currently working on helping Bristol to become a restorative city. She has written/edited 10 books, including Restorative Justice: How It Works.


With the financial support from the Criminal Justice Programme of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibilty of "Schleswig-Holsteinischer Verband für soziale Strafrechtpflege; Straffälligen- und Opferhilfe e.V" and can in no way be taken to refect the views of the European Commission.