Victims, Citizens and the Potential for Justice
Chapter 7: Experiencing justice
Justice is experienced as well as imagined. This chapter uses procedural and distributive justice theory to explore what lies behind assessments of satisfaction with criminal justice made by victims of violence. People make assessments from different standpoints and not only as ‘victim’. The longitudinal panel reveals high victim satisfaction with police that plummets in assessments of prosecution and of court and do not recover six to eight months after the finalization of the case. Behind dissatisfaction are assessments of the outcome acceptance, the quality of interpersonal justice, an influential victim voice and respect for offender rights. These form an integrated justice judgement. Within these dimensions, victims identified the importance of recognition of their standing, equality of treatment, and information and dialogue. The outcome was assessed in relation to its implications for the offender, the victim’s community of others, and to themselves.
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