Prison Sentences

(asked on 11th May 2021) - View Source

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what is their timetable for implementing the plans set out in their A Smarter Approach to Sentencing white paper (CP 292), published on 16 September 2020; and in particular, when they plan to reduce the time periods after which some sentences become spent for the purpose of criminal records checks in order to improve offender rehabilitation.

This question was answered on 25th May 2021

The legislative reforms announced in A Smarter Approach to Sentencing White Paper will be brought forward in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts (PCSC) Bill. This bill was introduced on 9 March and, as confirmed in the Queen’s Speech, has been carried forward to the next session.

For the first time, sentences over four years will be able to become spent, and rehabilitation periods will be reduced for community and custodial sentences of less than four years. These changes will come into effect once the PCSC Bill has received Royal Assent.

Work is also underway on the non-legislative reforms set out in the White Paper. We are on track to deliver the Pre-Sentence Report pilot on time, and the Community Sentence Treatment Requirement Programme is now operating in courts across 14 areas in England, with eight more to come online during 2021. The Call for Evidence on Neurodiversity also set out in the White Paper closed on 15 January 2021, and evidence from this is being reviewed with a full report due this Summer.

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