Justice written question – answered on 29th February 2012.

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Photo of Andrew Jones Andrew Jones Conservative, Harrogate and Knaresborough

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what steps he is taking to reduce re-offending of people sentenced to one year or less in custody.

Photo of Crispin Blunt Crispin Blunt Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Ministry of Justice) (Prisons and Probation)

The Government are committed to reducing re-offending to cut crime, build safer communities and increase public confidence in the criminal justice system.

Many of the offenders who are sentenced to one year or less in custody are serial offenders with chaotic lives who repeatedly commit crime. The latest reoffending rates for short term prisoners illustrates the urgent need to tackle their re-offending, with 56.6% of adults serving sentences of less than 12 months re-offend within one year of release.

This cohort of offenders is the target of the first custody related pilot of our payment by results programme to reduce reoffending and will be an important focus of many of the other pilots, whether managed from custody or by other agencies in the community helping address the cause of their offending on release.

As set out in “Breaking the Cycle” Green Paper and the Government Response, the Government have a radical new approach for working across Government and with the private and voluntary sectors to rehabilitate offenders. This includes closer partnership working at the local level; getting offenders free from drug and alcohol problems and addressing offenders’ mental health problems; improving offenders skills and getting them into work; and reducing barriers to resettlement.

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