Key Links



Death Penalty


Justice System





Practitioner Links

Domestic Violence

Mental Disorder

Restorative Justice

Sex Offenders

Substance Misuse



News Archives: Index

October 7, 2010: Probation Set For Industrial Action

October 5, 2010: Turning Prisoners Into Taxpayers

October 4, 2010: Murder Changes Now In Force

September 20, 2010: Probation Programmes Face Cuts

August 24, 2010: Victorian Poor Law Records Online

August 10, 2010: Justice Job Cuts

July 28, 2010: Prison Violence Growing

July 22, 2010: Police Numbers: Latest Figures

July 22, 2010: New Jurisdiction Rules

July 16, 2010: CCJS On Prison And Probation Spending Under Labour

July 15, 2010: Latest Statistics On Violent And Sexual Crime

July 15, 2010: Latest National Crime Figures

July 15, 2010: New Chief Prisons Inspector

July 14, 2010: Hard Times Ahead For Prisons: Anne Owers

July 14, 2010: Prison Does Not Work: Ken Clarke

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform: Sentencing and Rehabilitation

July 13, 2010: Criminal Justice Reform Priorities

July 12, 2010: What Price Public Protection, Asks Probation Chief Inspector

July 12, 2010: NOMS has failed, says Napo

July 10, 2010: IPCC To Investigate Death of Raoul Moat

July 9, 2010: Women In Prison: New Report

July 9, 2009: Unjust Deserts: Imprisonment for Public Protection

July 8, 2010: Police Search Powers Change

July 7, 2010: Make 'Legal High' Illegal, Says ACMD

July 2, 2010: Failing Children In Prison

July 2, 2010: Police Buried Under a Blizzard of Guidance: HMIC

July 1, 2010: Freedom To Change The Law?

June 30, 2010: A New Outlook On Penal Reform?

June 30, 2010: Revolving Door Of Offending Must Stop, Says Clarke

June 30, 2010: Ken Clarke: Speech on Criminal Justice Reform

June 29, 2010: No More Police Targets

June 26, 2010: Family Intervention Projects Questioned

June 25, 2010: Cutting Criminal Justice

June 24, 2010: Napo on Sex Offenders Report

June 23, 2010: Closing Courts: The Cuts Begin

June 23, 2010: Strategy To Tackle Gangs

June 15, 2010: Courts and Mentally Disordered Offenders

June 8, 2010: Working With Muslims in Prison

June 1, 2010: Your Chance To Nominate a QC

April 1, 2010: Community Payback Extended

Offenders sentenced to community payback will face what the government argues are even tougher and more intense punishments, according to Justice Secretary Jack Straw.

The intensive community payback sentence requires all unemployed offenders sentenced to more than 200 hours of community payback to complete their punishment intensively. Offenders will be expected to work three days a week and do a minimum of 18 hours every week clearing undergrowth, picking-up litter, renovating community centres and cleaning up graffiti for local communities.

The extension of intensive community payback follows its introduction in January 2009 for possession of a knife as part of the government's Tackling Knife Crime Programme and implementation in October for a more limited range of offences when offenders are unemployed and sentenced to 200 hours or more of community payback. Community sentences that effectively punish offenders in the community and address offenders' behaviour can get right to the heart of the offending; the sentences provide robust punishment and restrict liberty for individuals in order to change patterns of behaviour in often chaotic lifestyles.

The rate of reoffending by offenders following a short custodial sentence is 59.9%. These short sentences can lead to problems with employment, housing and family relations and there is insufficient time to tackle the causes of the offender's behaviour. The reoffending rate following a community sentences is 36.1%.

Justice Secretary Jack Straw commented:

 'Offenders sentenced to 'pay' for their crimes within the community can already expect to work hard and lose much of their free time. But the government also wants to see tougher and more effective community-based sentences.'

 'The intensive community payback sentence announced today ensures that tough community sentences, which are credible in the eyes of the public, are available to deal with less serious offenders. Community-based punishments are proven to be more effective at reducing re-offending than short term prison sentences'.

Last year over 62,000 offenders successfully completed community payback sentences in England and Wales. It is estimated that over eight million hours of free labour were provided to benefit communities by offenders sentenced to community payback. Community payback does not replace paid employment - most of the work done would not be possible without the free labour provided by offenders. The additional work they do to make reparation for their crimes was valued at over £48 million last year, if paid at minimum wage.