Victim Youth Conferencing Project Reduces Recidivism

Victim Youth Conferencing Project Reduces Recidivism

Thursday, June 22, 2017

In 2015 the Office of Dispute Resolution (ODR) partnered with the University of Minnesota's Center for Restorative Justice and Peacemaking (CRJP) to initiate a pilot Victim Youth Conference (VYC) project involving The Mediation Center in Lincoln, Mediation West in Scottsbluff, and Concord Mediation Center in Omaha, which was funded in part by the Sherwood Foundation.  

Dr. Mark Umbreit and his Minnesota team at CRJP helped develop a program which integrated evidence-based practices into Victim Youth Conferencing that specifically meets the needs of Nebraska communities. Currently ODR and Jennifer Blevins at Restorative Justice and Peacemaking are analyzing recidivism rates of youth referred to the project. Blevins states “Preliminary recidivism data for Nebraska Victim Youth Conferencing in juvenile cases is showing promising results.” Out of the 38 youth who participated in the program and closed their cases with the center prior to May 30, 2016, only six recidivated. Of those same 38 youth, six had prior offenses and none of those six individuals recidivated. 

Please look for more information on VYCs and recidivism in the coming months. Until then if you are interested in learning more about VYC in Nebraska please read The Juvenile Victim Offender Conferencing Pilot Program: A Year in Review.

Contact: Debora Denny, J.D. Denny,
Office of Dispute Resolution, Nebraska State Court Administrator's Office

Photo: L-R: Jeanne Brandner, Deputy Probation Administrator for Juvenile Services; Cindy Tierney, Director Concord Mediation Center; Dr. Mark Umbreit, University of MN; Hon. Doug Johnson, Douglas County Juvenile Court; Debora Denny, Office of Dispute Resolution.