Documents to download

There are over 250,000 people under the supervision of probation services at any one time. Under current policy, professionals provide rehabilitative probation services to all prisoners; this starts twelve weeks before their release, with supervision in the community continuing for twelve months after release. While on probation, individuals may have to:   

  • do unpaid work;
  • complete an education or training course;
  • get treatment for addictions; and
  • attend regular meetings with an ‘offender manager’.

Since 2014, two services have managed offenders on probation: 

  • the National Probation Service (NPS), a statutory criminal justice service, supervises high-risk offenders; and
  • 21 community rehabilitation companies (CRCs) managing low and medium risk offenders.

However, the Government has recently announced plans to reform the probation system. The plans propose a new model of probation services in England and Wales, where the NPS would be responsible for managing all offenders on a community order or license, including those currently managed by CRCs.

This briefing considers on the Government’s recent announcement. It focuses on the probation system in England and Wales and outlines: plans for the proposed system; the history of the current system; and criticisms it received. It also includes statistics relating to probation and re-offending. Information on conditions in prisons is set out in further reading.

Documents to download

Related posts

  • In recent months there has been a renewed focus on the future of hydrogen as a low carbon energy carrier for the UK. This had led to calls from a variety of individuals and organisations for the Government and the newly formed Hydrogen Advisory Council to publish a hydrogen strategy. This issue is due to be the subject of an oral question in the House of Lords on 17 September 2020.

  • The sentencing of offenders whose crimes lead to the death of an emergency service worker can vary depending upon the conviction received. The Harper’s Law campaign has called for life sentences to be imposed in instances where an emergency service worker is killed as a direct result of a crime. This article discusses life sentences, minimum terms, and recent calls for change to sentencing in England and Wales. This is due to be the subject of an oral question in the House of Lords on 1 October 2020.