Make Justice work have appeared in the Law Society Gazette-
The prison population has reached a record high of 87,120, according to figures released on Friday by the Ministry of Justice.
But does being tough on crime mean offenders have to go to prison, or are community sentences and reparation actually tougher? And are the latter more effective and less costly ways to reduce crime and reoffending?
A report published last week by independent campaign group Make Justice Work, Community or Custody, said that for persistent low level offending, the answer is yes.
The enquiry team spent a year examining community sentence regimes across the country. It was ‘astonished and impressed by the rigour and impact’ of the work it saw and concluded that alternatives to custody are not a soft option.