Crime Victims and Offenders in Mediation: An Emerging Area of Social Work Practice

Mark S. Umbreit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Scopus citations


Social workers are playing an increasing role in a new practice area, the mediation of conflict between crime victims and their offenders. By serving as board members, community organizers, program developers and managers, trainers, and mediators, social workers are affecting creative criminal justice reforms. Victim-offender mediation provides an opportunity for crime victims to meet the offender, talk about the offense, express concerns, and negotiate a mutually agreeable restitution agreement. A brief overview of the mediation process is presented along with a case example of a mediation involving a burglary. The role played by two co-mediators, both trained social workers, is described. The impact of the mediation process on helping victims achieve closure and helping offenders personally make amends is presented. Issues related to program development and replication are identified. © 1993, by the National Association of Social Workers, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-73
Number of pages5
JournalSocial Work
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1993


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