This Briefing Note is the second instalment of a series of three. The series began in Briefing Note 1 with an exploration of some fundamental questions in criminal justice policy and will culminate in a set of policy approaches. This paper surveys successful trial, sentencing, and rehab programmes over the last 20 years.
- Poverty and deprivation, particularly in the regions, have a significant impact on offending.
- Programmes do not pay sufficient attention to offenders’ therapeutic and cultural needs.
- Other procedural problems like insufficient legal representation, long trials, and inadequate support for vulnerable offenders can create further disadvantages for offenders.
- Programmes need to work with individual offenders to deliver comprehensive assessments of need and tailored services that are culturally appropriate.
- Successful programmes have emphasised holistic casework at all stages of the court and sentence process designed to identify and work with the root causes of an individual’s offending.
- Criminal justice policy as a whole needs to address procedural delays in the courts.
- Programmes should be developed at a local level by communities which can ensure cultural appropriateness to meet the needs of offenders.
- Additional focus needs to be given to support programmes after the completion of a sentence to ensure the ex-offender has adequate support to desist from further criminal behaviour.