Future looking bright for
MORE than 120 people packed into Wirral
Christian Centre to learn more about neighbourhood justice. The national
charity Redeeming Our Communities (ROC), along with Wirral Council’s Community
Safety Team and Merseyside Police hosted a community consultation event called a
As well as discussing how ‘restorative justice’ can be a real alternative
to Court proceedings in some cases, the event also served as a platform to re-launch the Wirral Neighbourhood Justice Scheme.
The scheme had been successfully piloted over the last 2 years and a decision
was taken by Wirral’s Community Safety Partnership to commission ROC to deliver
the service in the borough and build on the solid foundations that have been
Cllr George Davies, Wirral’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Community Safety,
said:- “The restorative justice approach is proven to reduce re-offending
rates, stop conflict from escalating and minimise the harm caused to victims. It
also gives victims of crime, or those on the receiving end of anti social
behaviour, a sense of closure.
This works in tandem with existing enforcement processes, helping resolve issues
and preventing reoccurrence. We are delighted with how the Neighbourhood Justice
Scheme has been running in Wirral and with ROC on board we are confident it will
continue playing a vital role in helping the council achieve our pledge to
ensure our communities are safe.”
Cllr Davies played a part in a role play exercise at the event,
demonstrating how restorative justice fits into the criminal justice system. He
played an alleged victim in a dispute, while Chief Superintendent Ian Hassall
took the role of the police officer called to the scene. 1 of the scheme’s
current volunteer facilitators, Debi Gould, went on to describe a recent
neighbour dispute which was successfully resolved at a face to face meeting.
Another of the event’s aims was to attract new
volunteer facilitators for the scheme, who will be trained in restorative
justice, over 3 Saturdays, over November 2016, and also a part time paid Co-ordinator
for the project. A number of people came forward as a result of the
‘conversation’ and ROC are confident all 12 volunteers will be in place in the
next few weeks.
Cllr Davies added:- “The involvement of communities and individuals is
central to the success of this scheme so I’m encouraged by the number of people
who have come forward and expressed an interest in becoming a Restorative
Justice practitioner and getting involved in tackling the kind of low level
crime and nuisance which can blight communities.”
Wirral’s Mayor, Cllr Pat Hackett, officially opened the event and welcomed
everyone while Debra Green, the founding Director of ROC, described how her
organisation has been working towards safer, kinder communities in partnership
with other agencies and faith groups since 2004.
The evening also included a time for ‘Celebrating the Good’; mapping all
the great activities that are already happening in the Wirral. Merseyside’s
Police and Crime Commissioner, Jane Kennedy, and Mark Camborne, Head of
Corporate and Community Safety at Wirral Council, were among those who are
providing their support.
If you require further information about the ROC Restore project, please contact
Andy Bell for further information on:- 0161 393 4511. Video of part of the ROC
Conversation can be viewed on:-