The EM (electronically monitored) curfew allows for offenders to be curfewed ‘at a place so specified’ for not less than two and not more than 12 hours a day, on days the curfew operates, for a period not exceeding six months. Curfew and exclusion requirements are available from the suite of 12 requirements that can make up a community order and the majority of them are electronically monitored. However, any requirement of a community order or suspended sentence may be subject to electronic monitoring which is also used in Home Detention Curfews for offenders released from prison.
Whilst most curfew requirements operate as a stand-alone punishment for lower risk offenders, sentencers and probation staff are using them increasingly with higher risk offenders as part of an overall package of supervision and monitoring to reduce the risk of reoffending. They can, for example, be used to disrupt patterns of offending such as night time burglaries, to introduce stability into chaotic lifestyles and to support intentions to give up offending by curfewing ‘risky’ hours. ‘Tagging’ has been successfully used in Intensive Alternative to Custody pilots and the use of satellite tracking for offenders subject to Integrated Offender Management is being explored to assess how it can contribute to controlling and changing an offenders’ behaviour.