Contrary to the Centre for Crime Prevention report, community sentences are cutting crime and preventing victims.
Community sentences outperform short-term prison sentences and are 8.3% more effective in reducing one year proven re-offending rates.
The statistics the Centre for Crime Prevention use may look dramatic but in reality they do not make a lot of sense. They show a lack of understanding of the role of sentences, prisons and probation.
You cannot compare medium to long prison tariffs with community orders as sentencing guidelines wouldn’t allow them to be interchangeable sentences.
It would also be extremely costly to the taxpayer if we sent all 240,000 people, of whom around 160,000 do not go on to re-offend, to prison for at least four years as their report suggests. A four year prison sentence would amount to £88,000, ten times the cost of a community sentence.
What the public and victims really want to see is crime stop. Community sentences tackle the causes such as drug and alcohol addiction that lead to crime, and are effective with re-offending rates falling by an equivalent of 10 per cent since 2000.