Community Payback (Probation)

Unpaid work is one of the 12 requirements in the Community Order, which was introduced in the Criminal Justice Act 2003. Magistrates and Judges can order offenders to undertake a specified number of hours. The hours worked can vary from 40 hours to 300 hours. In the past this sentence has been called Community Service or, more recently, Community Punishment.

Offenders are expected to undertake a minimum of six hours a week and to have completed their ordered hours within 12 months.

The Probation Service supervises this work and provides opportunities for offenders to work seven days a week while some probation areas run their own workshops in the evening.

The Probation Service's number one priority is the protection of the public. Each offender is carefully assessed before they are assigned to a project of work. This assessment looks at an offender's criminal and personal history, the crimes they have committed - and the risk they pose to the public. Men and women, who are assessed as being unsuitable for work in the community, are managed in workshops that are based at Probation Centres or are supervised on enclosed projects that involve no direct contact with the public.

Small teams of offenders are transported to and from the project and are supervised by fully trained staff working for the Probation Service. A project must occupy at least two people for one full day.

The work can benefit local schools; faith groups; churches; charities and community organisations. The work can include painting and decorating; basic building work such as repairing outside walls or paths; graffiti removal and clearing up overgrown areas.

Can you suggest a project?
These are our rules and considerations:

  • We can only do work that would normally be undertaken by voluntary labour.
  • We provide the labour; we ask that the community group or charity provide the materials for the job such as paint, wood or bricks.
  • The work must provide a service to the community.
  • Is there water available?
  • Is there electric light available?
  • Is there a toilet available for use?

To nominate a project please use our Contact Form or call 01892 554233

Attachment(s):