Addressing Violence Within a Family

K contacted the Kent and Medway Restorative Justice Service following a serious violent episode carried out on her and her husband (P) by their adopted son (M) on Christmas Day at the family home. K and P told the facilitator that this was the latest in a long line of incidents. They wanted to feel safe in their home and also find a way to change their relationship with him so they could do ‘normal family things’ together. The family was still in contact with each other although P and M hadn’t met face-to-face for two months.

M is a young adult with complex needs which meant that the restorative process needed to be adapted in several ways to ensure that he could take part. Prior to meeting with M, the facilitator consulted with his advocate, who played a key role, and his parents, to understand how best to engage with him. The advice given was detailed and included guidance on what to wear, what not to bring to meetings and how to structure conversations with him. There was significant consideration as to where to hold the restorative meeting, with K suggesting a fast-food restaurant to make M feel as relaxed as possible. M agreed to this. 

K and P talked through what they wanted to say and how they would say it with the facilitator. Everyone knew that the restorative meeting could have many breaks or be shortened if needed. During the meeting, P took the initiative to take M outside for their own conversation - the first time dad and son had spoken alone together since Christmas. 

The meeting has had a huge impact on the family, providing the fresh start that they were looking for. M’s sleepovers are now planned and he is much more able to recognise and talk about when something is troubling him. Whilst M was anxious about the meeting, he has said that it was a positive thing to do.

After his last visit home, K said ‘We were in the kitchen when M heard the front door open.  He literally ran down the hallway and threw his arms around his dad and they stood hugging each other.  It was so lovely and so natural. I had to let you what a difference Restorative Justice has made.’

If you are interested in finding out more about how Restorative Justice might help you and you are based in Kent, please give us a call on 0800 783 1583 or email us at and we will be glad to help you.

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Addressing Violence Within a Family

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What People Say About Restorative Justice

The facilitators have been wonderful. I feel stronger than I did. I would really recommend Restorative Justice.

Mrs Wilson

I actually appreciated how quick the process happened.

Mr Atkinson, victim.

It was an opportunity to help the offender reform.

Mr Bird, victim.