In a bid to improve 'public confidence' in the criminal justice system, Justice Minister Chris Grayling has announced (again) that all community sentences are to incorporate a 'punitive element'. The reforms brought about by the Crime and Courts Act 2013 will come into force from 11 December and are expected to affect around 40,000 people punished each year.
The Ministry of Justice press release claims that supervision alone is less effective than punishment in reducing 'reoffending'.
For many reformers and campaigners community sentences have often been put forward as a tool for controlling or reducing prison numbers. However, the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies' research found that an emphasis on tougher community sentences may have contributed to sentencing inflation, with less serious offences being subject to higher tarriff sentences.
To find out more check out:
- Helen Mills (2011) Community sentences: A solution to penal excess?
- Helen Mills and Rebecca Roberts (2012) Reducing the numbers in custody: Looking beyond criminal justice solutions