In the search for effective strategies for promoting accountability and safety in cases of intimate partner violence, jurisdictions across the United States have begun slowly—and often quietly—to pilot restorative approaches. This study from the Center for Court Innovation seeks to document how these restorative approaches are being applied to intimate partner violence across the country. It draws on a national survey of programs along with five in-depth cases studies based on follow-up site visits.
While the survey results suggest a wide variation in how restorative approaches are being used, some overarching themes emerge: programs that responded prioritize survivor agency and safety, focus on active accountability for those who have caused harm, and emphasize voluntary participation. They also strive to engage their communities in efforts to address intimate partner violence. The study concludes with a series of guiding principles and recommendations for the field.