IARS User Scrutiny Panel

Shopping basket

Your shopping basket is empty.


  • About the Panel

    The Restore:London User Scrutiny Panel (Scrutiny Panel) is an independent body hosted by the IARS International Institute who also acts as its Secretariat. This newly formed body is a key feature of the Pan-London Restorative Justice Service currently being developed by Restore:London as commissioned by the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime. Led by an independent Chair, it consists of seven members with lived experiences of being victims of crime (5 individuals) as well as professional restorative justice practitioners (2 individuals).

    The Scrutiny Panel’s main role is to oversee the delivery of the Restore:London project ensuring that the project develops and delivers a Pan-London Restorative Justice Service that has the voices of users at its core and reflects a model that meets the needs of victims as its central focus.

    The development of the Pan-London Restorative Justice Service is divided into 2 phases;

    • Phase 1: focuses on designing an evidence based and victim-led service model
    • Phase 2: focuses on operational implementation of the model and ongoing service delivery

    The Scrutiny Panel provides advice and oversight throughout both phases. 

    The Scrutiny Panel meets at a minimum every two months, with additional meetings being held as deemed necessary. The first meeting of the Panel is expected to be held in October 2016, with bi-monthly meetings continuing until the end of the current commissioning period in January 2019.

  • Restore:London - The Pan-London Restorative Justice Service

    The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime has commissioned Restore:London to deliver the first ever Pan-London Restorative Justice Service, a victim-led approach to the provision of restorative justice across London.

    The Pan-London Restorative Justice Service will ensure that victims are able to access consistently high quality restorative justice services at every stage of the criminal justice system. Restore:London will develop a programme that complements and enhances existing restorative justice services across London, filling any gaps in provision.

    The programme will be overseen and evaluated by a steering group, comprised of key stakeholders including victims. This ground-breaking approach will share evidence and insight with key partners, including Police and Crime Commissioners across England with responsibility for commissioning victims services.

    Restore:London is a non-profit consortium led by Catch22 with key partners Restorative Solutions, Khulisa and the IARS International Institute. The consortium partners bring expertise in building and evaluating victim-led services, restorative justice delivery, delivering pan-London programmes, offender management and criminal justice innovation.

  • Terms of Reference

    The Scrutiny Panel will be hosted by IARS who will also act as its Secretariat. It will run for the full duration of the project, from service model design through to actual service delivery.

    The Scrutiny Panel will be an independent body, led by a chairperson from outside the Restore:London partnership with a high level of experience in both victim support and liaison work and restorative justice practice. After establishing the Panel, the independent chairperson will have direct leadership of the panel, with ongoing secretariat support provided by IARS. The Panel will have a total of 8 independent members comprised of 1 chair, 5 individuals with lived experience of being a victim of (any) crime and 2 restorative justice practitioners.

    The Scrutiny Panel will meet at a minimum every two months, with additional meetings being held as deemed necessary. The first meeting of the Panel is expected to be held in October 2016, with bi-monthly meetings continuing until the end of the current commissioning period in January 2019.

    The Role of the Panel

    The central role of the Scrutiny Panel is to ensure that Restore:London develops and delivers a pan-London restorative justice service that has the voices of users at its core and reflects a model that has meeting the needs of victims at its central focus. The Panel will be critical to achieving this through the provision of independent advice and scrutiny.

    The development of the Pan-London Restorative Justice Service will be divided into two phases. Phase 1 focuses on designing and evidence based and victim-led service model, while Phase 2 focuses on operational implementation of the model and ongoing service delivery. The Scrutiny Panel will have a central role throughout both phases fulfilling the following functions:

    Phase 1

    • Overseeing of the development of victim, offender and stakeholder surveys seeking evidence on the needs of victims of crime in accessing restorative justice services.
    • Providing input into the design of the Restore:London service delivery model in relation to how it could best meet the needs of victims of crime.
    • Once designed, reviewing the model to assess its compatibility with victims’ needs.

    Phase 2

    • Providing independent scrutiny to ensure that Restore:London is meeting the needs of victims as designed (this is likely to include review of service data, service user feedback and review of representative cases).
    • Providing assistance, advice and insight to Restore:London delivery team in relation to any identified challenges regarding victims’ needs. 


    Each Member of the Scrutiny Panel will be required to:

    • Commit to attending bi-monthly meetings from October 2016 – January 2019.
    • Fulfill their role independently of any other affiliations.
    • Commit to being well organised and prepared for attendance at each meeting, including reading all relevant documents and agenda papers ahead of each meeting.
    • Sign an agreement on their role and commitments.
    • Agree with all other members the boundaries and expectations of the members.

    Terms of reference can be downloaded below.

  • Become a Panel Member

    We are not currently recruiting for the User Scrutiny Panel.

    For any further inquiries please contact IARS:

    Email: contact@iars.org.uk

    Office line: 020 7064 4380

    Office Mobile: 07833224442 

    Address: The IARS International Institute, 14 Dock Offices, Surrey Quays Road, London SE16 2XU

    You may be interested to read the Person Specification and the Terms of reference below; 

    * Person Specification and Terms of reference can be downloaded below.

  • Victims' Rights in Restorative Justice and Criminal Justice - Accredited Online Training for Victims and Professionals

    Online Course for Victims of Crime

    Victims' Rights in Restorative and Criminal Justice is a FREE online course that aims to empower victims by increasing their knowledge of their rights in criminal and restorative justice processes as outlined in the EU Victims' Directive 2012/29/EU establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime. The goal of the Victims' Directive "is to improve the real, day-to-day situation of millions of victims of crime across Europe to the greatest extent possible". The online course can be undertaken by victims of any crime, based in the UK, Europe and internationally. The course was developed through evidence from previous programmes that the IARS International Institute has run for the European Commission (“Restorative Justice in Europe: Safeguarding Victims And Empowering Professionals) in partnership with 4 European partners  and in consultation with key stakeholders, practitioners, victims and offenders in order to reflect their needs and expectations from the criminal justice system.

    The key training objectives are:

    • To increase awareness and knowledge amongst victims of crime about their rights within criminal and restorative justice processes.
    • To allow victims of crime to reach their own decision about whether to participate in restorative justice and criminal justice processes.
    • To improve the experience of victims of crime and their families in the criminal justice process by increasing their knowledge around their rights and the safeguards they should be offered.

    To find out more and access the free online course please click here.


    Online Course for Professionals

    The IARS International Institute is pleased to offer this Continuing Professional Development (CPD) accredited, evidence- based, online course on victims' rights and restorative and criminal justice. The course aims to increase professionals’ knowledge and skills in relation to victims' rights in restorative and criminal justice and ensure that practices conform with the new EU Victims' Directive 2012/29/EU establishing minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime. The course can be undertaken by professionals based in UK, Europe and internationally. 

    Key objectives of the e-training are:

    • Achieving best practice in delivering restorative justice safely for victims.
    • Sensitivities around victims, their needs and risks involved while delivering restorative justice.
    • The European Commission and the Victims’ Directive.
    • Rights of the victim and minimum safeguards during service provision.
    • The restorative justice Articles of the Victims’ Directive and their implications for best practice.
    • Implementing the Directive and legal consequences if breached.
    • Relating the Victims’ Directive material to your day to day practice.

    To find out more and access this CPD accredited online course please click here.

  • International Victims' Pledge

    Acknowledging and respecting the rights of victims' of crime, the IARS International Institute has set up the International Victims' Pledge [(c) IARS] for organizations and individuals who provide services to victims (including statutory, private and voluntary). The pledge aims to ensure that minimum standards for victims as outlined in the Victims’ Directive 2012/29/EU are applied consistently across all victims’ services in the UK and internationally.

    By signing up to the pledge you agree that victims of crime and their families are:

    • treated with dignity and respect
    • provided with appropriate safeguards at all stages of the criminal and restorative justice processes.
    • supported and empowered  to know their rights.


    (c) The IARS International Institute

    View here all the organisations that signed up to the pledge


    By signing up to this pledge you can display the pledge logo on your website and publications. Please feel free to host the link on your website.


Panel Members 

Gabrielle Browne 

Gabrielle, a victims' rights campaigner and a victim of a serious sexual assault who experienced major failings within the criminal justice process over a nine year period, has been motivated to help other victims, and to encourage better working practices within criminal justice agencies. By waiving her legal right to anonymity she has provided a voice for victims who have suffered violent and sexual crime. Gabrielle has appeared frequently in the national press, television and radio to give a victim's perspective on criminal justice matters.She has significant experience working directly with Government Ministers and officials within the Home Office and the Ministry of Justice and with individual criminal justice agencies to encourage policy change in support of victims of crime. Her recommendations have led to improvements in how victims are being supported. She has worked with Members of Parliament from all major parties and is respected as a balanced and intelligent force for reform.



Janine Carroll 

Janine Carroll is Director of Restorative Now, specialising in Restorative Justice training, implementation and facilitation. She has over 30 years’ experience in restorative practice, across the criminal justice, education and community safety sectors, much of this gained in New Zealand and the UK. She also delivers Restorative Justice training to charity groups in South East Asia and continues to grow her interest in working internationally. Janine is an accredited Trainer and Practitioner with the Restorative Justice Council UK, and has written a tertiary academic programme and Intensive Facilitation Training Course, which carries the Restorative Justice Council Approved Quality Mark. She sits on the Restorative Justice Council Expert Advisory Group and is pleased to contribute to the work of the Restore: London User Scrutiny panel as victim engagement, inclusion and consultation is essential in ensuring the integrity of Restorative practice and the affording of the right to a voice for those impacted by harmful behaviour. 


Jerome Harvey-Agyei

Jerome Harvey-Agyei

Jerome has grown up in the care system which has given him a set of experiences that have given him a passion & purpose to then go onto do a lot of work helping vulnerable people via Barnardo’s as an advocate and participation worker. Jerome also runs empowerment workshops, Does Motivational talks, speaks at many events and is a radio host for Don City Radio with the aim to help empower communities to help educate and evolve the world around him.


Martin Underwood

Martin Underwood is an Oxford law graduate that practised as a criminal law barrister with a passion for restorative justice and other criminal justice policies that will make a difference. He has now transitioned to be Head of HR and runs www.life-productions.org, an online guided course to make a career change,  and consults for careers and learning organisations. 



Natasha Benjamin

Natasha founded and created Free Your Mind in 2013. She brings: 10 years of experience in marketing and communications; an Honours Degree in Media, Communication & Culture; her ongoing training in Mindfulness and her personal experience of mental illness and recovery – along with her infectious passion for healing. She is First Aid and Mental Health First Aid trained (Youth and Adult) by Mental Health First Aid England. Natasha has also recently been appointed to 2 committees – one for Rethink and the other overseeing mental health provision in Waltham Forest – and has just been elected Council Governor for North East London's NHS Foundation Trust and a few other advisory groups. In 2013 Natasha was nominated for an Inspirational Woman of The Year Award by national newspaper The Daily Mail and in 2014 was nominated for 3 other awards: Motivational and inspirational business woman of the year by EBR, a National Diversity award, A back to black at Bafta award, a Beffta Award and recently won a social entrepreneurship Award by Unltd and finished 2014  with a certificate of recognition at the London Leadership and Peace Awards and recently was awarded a Star Award at the Lift effects Extraordinary lady speaks conference. Read more about Natasha here



Nicky Gunter

Nicky has been working in the restorative field since 2002, largely within youth justice sector. Between 2002-8 she worked as the victim liaison/RJ worker initially for Amends Mediation Service and then in both Enfield and Newham youth offending teams (YOTs). In 2008 Nicky took up the role of Restorative Justice Team Manager at Kensington & Chelsea YOT, managing the victim worker, reparation worker and the volunteer referral order panel members. In 2012, when the youth offending teams of Kensington & Chelsea, Westminster and Hammersmith & Fulham came together to share resources, she became the RJ Team Manager over the three teams. From the last 14 years of working in the field Nicky has accumulated substantial experience in managing and delivering restorative victim services. Also, delivering training to both professionals and volunteers, and developing and setting up new victim and restorative services. 



Sherica Spence

Sherica Spence

Sherica is the founder of Skye Alexandra House, a bespoke service designed to meet the needs of vulnerable young girls/women, who are at risk/victims of child sexual and criminal exploitation by providing a 24 hour residential service, workshop's and support groups. Sherica has worked with vulnerable young people since 2008, starting first with those in gangs before making vulnerable young girls her main focus in 2013. As a surviour of CSE and childhood sexual abuse and rape, Sherica was able to use her own story to help identify with the young girls in which she works with, knowing the behaviour patterns of those who have experienced trauma by sexual abuse and rape. Through Skye Alexandra House, Sherica provides services and training to schools, local authorities, police and professionals, who work with young girl's, who are at risk or victims of CSE. As well as regular guest on BBC radio discussing sexual abuse and rape. To date Sherica has worked with over 4,000 young people to educate, support and inspire them on their life journey. While speaking and providing CSE training to professionals, parents, community organisations and church leaders to raise awareness and help them to be able to identify, support and help those at risk/victims of CSE. Read more about Skye Alexandra House here



Robin Lockhart 

Robin Lockhart

Robin began his career as a qualified and experienced Youth and Community Development professional after spending many years working in the professional Creative Industries (where he ran several music and arts focused organisations).  Robin holds a BA(Hons) in Informal and Community Education from Christchurch University - Canterbury.  Robin is from a family that includes multiple ethnicities and faiths and has utilised his background to enable him to provide effective engagement to diverse communities through his Social Enterprise, Catalyst In Communities.  Robin has developed a reputation as an outstanding specialist professional coach, offering project management, training, research, evaluation and front-line delivery services to communities, with a long-standing personal commitment to Diversity, Equality and Peace Initiatives - particularly relating to programmes involving Young People.   All of Robins’ work follows a Restorative Practice methodology. In 2009 Robin was awarded the Kids Count Inspiration Award and in 2012 he received a Team London Award from London’s Mayor.  In 2016 Robin was shortlisted for the Restorative Practitioner of the Year Award and in 2017 received the Global Commonwealth Youth Worker Award.  Robin is now an Ambassador of Youth Work for The Commonwealth. After many years of working with communities (around areas of acute and often multiple needs), Robin Co-Founded The Community Coaching Academy – a Social Enterprise harnessing the power of 1 to 1 and Group Coaching with communities in order to enable them to realise their full potential.  By supporting those seeking help via a coaching approach, as opposed to the usual ‘deficit’ model, Robin realized that simply knowing that your Community Coach believes in you and knows that you can access the answers to your challenges yourself is a hugely empowering process. Robin added to the above list when he became the CEO of the Charity Through Unity. After working in partnership with Through Unity for several years, Robin stepped in to the role in March 2016. Through Unity exists to support families bereaved through homicide.


Ben Lyon - Chair of the User Scrutiny Panel 

Ben is a Restorative Justice Practitioner and Chair of the User Scrutiny Panel. Through the Restorative Justice User Panel, we are determined to provide an independent element so that high quality restorative practices can be provided across London and victims’ voices are heard.” Read Ben's bio here.