Restorative justice within the context of a death

with Dr Jane Bolitho and Terrence Davis


One of the appealing features of restorative justice processes is that they can potentially deal with the emotional impact of crime, yet considerable debate surrounds the question of whether or not restorative justice processes are appropriate for serious crimes that involve death. Advocates argue that these types of cases lend themselves to restorative justice processes, given the more serious harm and associated trauma, others argue that the risk and complexity outweigh potential benefits.

This session will offer both a research perspective and practitioner guidance.

Jane Bolitho, the new Chair in Restorative Justice (Vic) will speak specifically to the findings of Australian research on restorative justice processes in the context of a death.

Terrence Davis, an RJ facilitator from West Auckland, will then offer a practitioner lens on practice considerations in the context of a death. He will also provide a specific Māori perspective on restorative justice practices involving death. Do’s and don’ts. Tikanga Māori (protocols and procedures). The importance of including whānau, hapu and Iwi in decision making. Safety measures and considerations. Restoration of wellbeing in a wider context. The appropriateness of community panels. Choosing the appropriate venue. Considerations of Maramataka (Moon phases) when planning meetings.


Dr Jane Bolitho

Chair in Restorative Justice
School of Government
Victoria University of Wellington

Jane is a highly respected expert in restorative justice, restorative practices, and violence and conflict resolution. Her work explores the experiences of those coming before criminal justice systems, the operations of formal and community-based justice systems, alternative models of resolution, and innovations in justice.

Dr Bolitho is also an accredited mediator and practising youth justice conference convenor, sits on the Australian Psychological Society Dispute Resolution Committee, and is a professional member of Resolution Institute.


Terrence Davis
Restorative Justice Facilitator
Restorative Justice Waitakere


Ko Ngātokimatawhaorua te Waka
Ko Taumarere te Awa
Ko Kawiti Ko Pōmare ngā Tupuna
Ko Miria Ko Kāretu ngā Marae
Ko Ngāti Hine Ko Ngāti Manu ngā Hapū
Ko Ngāpuhi Nui Tonu te Iwi

Terry is a father of 5 children, a passionate man who was born and raised on the Marae.

Terry is an accredited FV facilitator under the wing of Restorative Justice Waitakere. He works within the Waitakere District Youth court as a Lay (cultural) Advocate for Youth Justice and Care and Protection. He is an accomplished speaker who has facilitated a tikanga Māori program called The Dynamics of Whanaungatanga (DoW) for Oranga Tamariki and Te Ara Poutama (Department of corrections).