Chittenden County Court Diversion Program was created and designed to encourage a sense of responsibility on the part of first time offenders for their criminal activity.
- It's aim is to provide a community-based alternative to the formal court process for first time offenders; which:
- Provides for a quick response to the offense. Most participants are scheduled to meet the Community Restorative Panel within four weeks of meeting with a Court Diversion Case Manager.
- Holds the participant responsible for their unlawful actions. Participants must take responsibility for committing the offense with which they are charged to be eligible for the program.
- Teaches responsibility while promoting the participants positive qualities. Diversion contracts are designed to help participants learn from their mistakes, make amends to victims and/or the community and not re-offend.
- Compensates victims of crimes and their losses. Court Diversion attempts to contact every victim. Victims are encouraged to participate in the Diversion process wherever possible if it is appropriate.
- Compensates communities for their losses and expenses. Community Service is part of many contracts. Court Diversion helps many local community organizations by sending participants to them to complete community service hours.
- Reduces the likelihood of repeated involvement with the law. By holding people responsible for their actions, fewer than 15% of clients who successfully complete a contract are statistically likely to re-offend within two years.