How to Change Your Local System: Tips on Action Planning

This page is archived material and is no longer updated. It may contain outdated information and broken links. The material presented on these pages is the product of five regional symposia held on restorative justice between June 1997 and January 1998.

The Community Needs To:

  • Go to where the energy is (80/20 rule)
  • Reclaim their moral authority
  • Be guided by shared principles
  • Establish collaborative, diverse, and multi-disciplinary teams

The Government Needs To:

  • Delegate power to shape and decide
  • Be patient and listen
  • Give information (e.g. effective PSI strategies, reducing risk, increasing protective factors)
  • Practice restraint
  • Be clear on roles and expectations

System Features that Isolate and Insulate

  • Data privacy and access to information
  • Sterilization of information
  • Removal of emotion from process
  • Intimidating and foreign structures
  • Professionalism
  • Public service convenience

Crime Provokes Community Responsibility by:

  • Calling attention to social problems and harmful social conditions.
  • Providing opportunity for the community to affirm its values and behavioral norms.
  • Causing a community obligation to provide a process through which this conflict can be resolved.

Thus, Crime is a form of "social fuel."

Sustaining Community Involvement


  • Must win support of public, not assume
  • Train citizens, not just practitioners
  • Get organizations involved


  • History of justice system-citizen cooperation
  • Lack of organizational involvement
  • Lack of understanding-i.e., message
  • Previous victim experiences
  • Community diversity

Four General Principles About Behavioral Change:

  1. Behavior is derived from thoughts
  2. Relationships count
  3. Community accountability counts
  4. Humans do not always follow principles
Date Created: December 4, 2007