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National Mediation Conference

The Dispute Resolution Branch and Youth Justice will be attending the National Mediation Conference at the Gold Coast from 12–14 September 2016.

Dispute Resolution Branch

The Dispute Resolution Branch helps people to resolve most types of disputes and delivers training in dispute resolution skills.

The most common disputes our mediators deal with are:

  • neighbourhood disputes involving fences, noise, children, pets and overhanging trees
  • family and intergenerational disputes
  • workplace disputes
  • commercial disputes
  • disputes relating to relationship separation
  • property settlement disputes
  • multi-party disputes, sometimes involving whole communities.

Read more about our mediation services.

Our training courses in dispute resolution include:

  • Mediation level 1, 2 and 3
  • Facilitating effective groups
  • Introduction to conflict coaching
  • Workplace conflict resolution
  • Mentoring program

Read more about our training courses.

Youth Justice

Restorative Justice is an internationally recognised evidence-based strategy used to reduce the impact of youth offending on victims and the community, and support children who have committed an offence to make better choices.

A restorative justice conference provides a safe environment for a meeting between a child who has committed an offence and the people most affected by that offence to discuss:

  • what happened
  • the impact
  • how to start to repair the harm caused to the victim.

Victims can benefit from participating in a restorative justice conference. Research has found that victims begin to feel a greater sense of security, confidence and optimism once they have met the child.

A restorative justice conference is a safe place for a child to take responsibility, learn how their actions have affected others, and start to make things right for the victim.

If a child breaks the law, the police may refer the child to a restorative justice conference instead of sending them to court. The child must admit to the offence to be eligible for a conference.

Changes to the Youth Justice Act commenced on 1 July 2016 reinstating and expanding court referral pathways to restorative justice conferencing. The new referral pathways include diversionary options (as an alternative to sentencing the child); pre-sentence referrals to assist in determining an appropriate sentence and post sentence referrals via a Restorative Justice Order.

It is anticipated that the enhanced suite of restorative justice referrals will reduce system demand in relation to the number of court appearances, number of children placed on supervised orders and number of children who re-offend.

Evidence has shown restorative justice conferencing may more effectively reduce re-offending for prolific offenders and more serious offences than traditional criminal justice methods.

Read more about restorative justice conferencing.

Last updated
11 July 2016
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