Monday, July 25, 2011

Only half of offenders on community orders made to do unpaid work

Only half of offenders handed community penalties are made to carry out unpaid work as part of their punishment, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.

Convicted criminals can be made to carry out physical work for the benefit of a local area as one of 12 requirements a court can place on a community order.

The work, known as Community Payback, can include gardening, removing graffiti, litter picking and clearing wasteland and is seen as a way of offenders giving something back to the communities they preyed on.

But over the last three years just 54 per cent of criminals handed community orders were made to carry out unpaid work.

It means tens of thousands of offenders who avoid prison every year also avoid being put to work in the community.

The figures last night further fuelled claims that the court orders are a “soft” punishment. (more)