Probation services are undergoing significant change, with the application of Payment by Resuts to the majority of rehabilitation work, and mandatory supervision of all offenders sentenced to less than 2 years in custody to be contracted out to a mix of providers. The new National Probation Service has managed high risk offenders since June 2014

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There has been a series of reforms to probation in recent years, summarised in Library Standard Note 6665 Introducing “Payment by Results” in Offender Rehabilitation and other reforms. (24 October 2013) This Note looks at the current position in relation to the Government’s policy on Offender Rehabilitation and the role of Payment by Results (PbR).

In October 2012, Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, Chris Grayling, announced that the Government now intended to apply PbR to the majority of rehabilitation work conducted with offenders in the community, as part of broader reforms. The Ministry of Justice’s strategy document Transforming Rehabilitation: A Strategy for Reform (published on 9 May 2013 as its response to the consultation Transforming Rehabilitation: A revolution in the way we manage offenders) again set out a number of proposed reforms to the rehabilitation system in both custody and the community. Proposals relating to rehabilitation in the community include legislating to introduce a minimum of 12 months’ mandatory supervision for all offenders sentenced to less than two years in custody and changes to the conditions that can be imposed as part of a Community Order or Suspended Sentence Order (as set out in the Offender Rehabilitation Act 2014.

A new public sector probation service has been created to directly manage high risk offenders known as the National Probation Service. This began operating from 1 June 2014. Library Standard Note 6894 Privatisation of the probation service :what’s happened so far? (20 May 2014) gives further details on the contracting out process. Standard Note 6665. Introducing “Payment by Results” in Offender Rehabilitation and other reforms (24 October 2013) provides a summary of developments in probation reform since 2001.

  • Commons Research Briefing SN06974
  • Authors: John Bardens, Oonagh Gay
  • Topics: Prisons

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