£3 million for community justice
3rd March 2019
Funding to support rehabilitation and reduce reoffending.
Charities working to reduce the cycle of reoffending will share almost £3 million to fund specialist services including employment training, early intervention and support for families of prisoners.
Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said:"Reconviction rates are at their lowest level in 19 years - helping to keep crime down and communities safe - and these services play a vital role in helping to reduce reoffending through specialist interventions with individuals and support for families.
"These charities work alongside community justice partners to support individuals to face their problems and change their lives for the better. They also make a valuable contribution in working with victims and communities affected by crime, helping people deal with the trauma and other consequences of offending behaviour.
"We are bringing forward plans to extend the presumption against short prison sentences this year and with more people serving community sentences these support services will be more important than ever."
Criminal justice social work service provider Sacro, and Families Outside, which support children and families affected by imprisonment, are among the charities who will receive funding for 2019-20.
Sacro Chief Executive Tom Halpin said:“We very much welcome the continuing support of the Scottish Government through the grant award made for 2019. This award enables us to provide services across Scotland's communities that directly support people to change their lives away from crime."
Professor Nancy Loucks, Chief Executive of Families Outside, said:“The origins and impact of offending, and solutions required, extend well beyond the criminal justice system. The Scottish Government clearly recognises this, and Families Outside is grateful for that insight and support.
“In 2017, the Scottish Government's Justice Vision and Priorities recognised for the first time that families are among the people who suffer the consequences of their family member's actions. We remain grateful for the government’s ongoing support to improve outcomes for these families, who have committed no crime but still pay the price."
£2.95 million funding will be shared by:
Positive Prison? Positive Futures
Supporting Offenders with Learning Disabilities (SOLD)
Turning Point Scotland
In February 2019, the Scottish Government announced plans to lay the order to extend the presumption against short prison sentences from 3 months to 12 after Easter. Subject to parliamentary approval, it is anticipated the extension will come into force in the summer.
85% of the responses to the Scottish Government’s 2015 Consultation on Proposals to Strengthen the Presumption against Short Periods of Imprisonment supported an extension of the presumption and 84% supported an extension to 12 months.