VICTIM OFFENDER DIALOGUE
A Victim Offender Dialogue is a voluntary meeting between the harmed person and the person responsible for causing the harm. It can include friends and family members who have also been impacted. After a period of preparation of every one involved, a face-to face meeting is arranged that takes place in a safe location.
The dialogue is solely at the request of those who have been harmed.
The facilitated dialogue can often provide healing and a sense of justice that is not available through the traditional justice system where the parties most directly impacted often times do not have a voice. It is an opportunity for all parties to be heard, for those who have been harmed to express their pain and trauma, and for the person responsible to fully understand the impact of their actions.
Previous participants have said they felt a great sense of satisfaction in being able to say what they needed to say to the responsible person(s). This in itself can promote their healing experience.
Responsible person(s) are able to listen and respond to what is expressed, and answer the many questions the person(s) harmed have long harbored. It is also an opportunity for the responsible party to better able to understand the devastating effects their actions have caused.
BENEFITS OF VICTIMS OFFENDER DIALOGUE
For the person who has been harmed:
The opportunity to explain how the harm impacted your life, express your thoughts and feelings about the incident in a safe environment.
Have your questions answered in a way that only the responsible person can provide.
Allow the responsible person to see you as a human being rather than an unknown other.
Be directly involved in how the responsible person(s) are held accountable for the harm caused by their actions.
For the responsible person:
• Ability to tell their side of the story.
• Take responsibility for the harm they caused.
• An opportunity to make amends for the harm they caused.
If you have been harmed and would like more information on this process please contact us at
Click below for a wonderful example of a victim offender dialogue.