Community Sentences

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Community Payback Order

The Scottish Government changed the law on community based sentences to make them stronger and more effective with a major focus being on people who appear before the Court making reparation within the communities in which they have offended. Community Payback Orders (CPOs) are used in courts for offences committed on or after 1st February 2011. These Orders allow Courts to impose one or more of a range of requirements on the person appearing before the Court to assist the person to address his/her criminogenic needs with the overall objective being to reduce the risk of further offending.

There are nine different requirements that can be given as part of a CPO. The sentencer will decide which ones should be selected for each sentence. This will depend on what the crime is and what can be done to help stop the person from committing more crimes.

These requirements are:

  • Unpaid work or other activity;
  • Supervision;
  • Compensation;
  • Programme ;
  • Mental health treatment;
  • Drug treatment;
  • Alcohol treatment;
  • Residence;
  • Conduct.

Unpaid Work and Other Activity Requirement

There are two levels of unpaid work and other activity requirement

A Level 1 Order can last from 20-100 hours and should be completed within three months unless otherwise directed by the Sheriff.

This level of order is available to Justice of the Peace Courts for all offences.

A Level 2 Order can last from 101-300 hours and should be completed within six months unless otherwise directed by the Sheriff.

The Community Payback Order places tighter restrictions on doing unpaid work and other activities. The timescales for offenders being seen, and starting unpaid work has been reduced from 21 to seven days.

Community Payback Orders allow a proportion (30% or a maximum of 30 hours) of the unpaid work hours to be used for therapeutic, groupwork or vocational learning, known as ‘Other Activity’.

Year on year the estimated total number of hours of unpaid work in East Dunbartonshire is on average 20,000 hours. Based on current National Living Wage in Scotland levels this equates to approx. £154,000 worth of unpaid work being carried out to benefit the community.

Request Unpaid Work

Do you have a project that you need some help with in East Dunbartonshire?

The Justice Team is looking for ideas for projects that people who are on a CPO can carry out to benefit the local community.

The HSCP is required to consult communities as to the nature of the unpaid work undertaken by people on CPOs in their local area and the Justice Team is keen to hear ideas from individuals, community groups and charities.

If you can confirm that this work;

  • will benefit the local community, 
  • will not take any paid work away from others
  • will not replace East Dunbartonshire Council private or voluntary organisation core business or if you are unable to complete the work on your own.

Please contact our Unpaid Work Team using the email address below. They will assess if the project fits the criteria for the team to complete

Those who suggest projects may need to pay for any materials required but we will provide the workforce and skilled supervision to ensure it is completed.

Please note that it may take approximately seven days for us to respond to your request

Deferred Sentence/Structured Deferred Sentence (SDS)

East Dunbartonshire Council Justice Services predominantly service three Sheriff Courts: Glasgow Sheriff Court, Airdrie Sheriff Court, Dumbarton Sheriff Court and the associated Justice of the Peace Courts. A Deferred Sentence or a Structured Deferred Sentence will be given if the person has been found or has pled guilty in court.

Deferred Sentences are available at both Dumbarton Sheriff Court, Airdrie Sheriff Court and the associated Justice of the Peace Courts. 

For people appearing before Glasgow Sheriff Court and the associated Justice of the Peace Court, a Structured Deferred Sentence (SDS) is available to sentencers which allows the Court to delay the final decision regarding sentencing to another date which is generally between 3 and 6 months

What is Deferred Sentence and what will it involve?

A Deferred Sentence can be imposed by the Court to allow the person appearing before the Court, time to engage with services that may already be in place to assist them to address offending behaviour and evidence to the Court that they can reside within the law and that they are committed to making positive changes to reduce their risk of re-offending. 

Social work intervention will be provided to the person prior to final sentencing with the onus being placed on the person to fully engage with any services that he/she has been referred to with the ultimate objective being to reduce the risk of further offending. A further report will be requested by the Court to allow the Court to be fully informed of the individual’s progress prior to the final sentencing decision.

Drug Treatment and Testing Order

A Drug Treatment and Testing Order (DTTO) is an Order that is used as a direct alternative to custody for people who suffer from serious drug misuse problems and where their offences are correlated with their use of drugs. DTTOs can range from six months to three years and are only used if the person is at risk of receiving a custodial sentence.

This Order is serviced by both Health and Social Work with the individual subject to the Order being required to attend appointments up to three times per week with an Addiction Worker, Social Worker and a Nurse within the team. 

Failure to comply with this Order will result in a breach of the Order and the Court can impose a custodial sentence when dealing with the breach.

The person must consent to undertaking frequent drug tests that form the basis of the progress report that the Court will receive each month.

The individual is required to attend the Court once a month to allow the Social Worker to update the Court on any progress/lack of progress made. It is the Court’s decision in cases where compliance is poor if they permit the Order to continue.

The Social Worker will work with the individual on assessed needs with the overall objective being to reduce the risk of further offending and the nurse’s remit will be to work with the person in terms of testing and providing advice, guidance and support on their medical position. 

The Addiction Worker’s role is to provide support and advice regarding relapse prevention strategies to ensure a successful rehabilitation in the community.

The objectives are to:

  • reduce or stop an offender's dependency or the likelihood of misusing drugs and
  • achieve positive changes in the scale of and frequency of drug related offending

The offender has to agree to:

  • treatment to tackle their drug problems
  • regular drug testing
  • frequent meetings with their Social Worker and Addiction Worker
  • regular review hearings by the Court

Probation Order

A Probation Order can be imposed by the Court if someone is convicted of an offence which was committed before 1 February 2011.  For offences committed after this date, a CPO (Community Payback Order) is now available. 

Restriction of Liberty Order (RLO)

A Restriction of Liberty Order restricts an individual to a specified place (normally a home address) for up to 12 hours per day and/or from a specified place for up to 24 hours (this can be an area where the majority of their offending is taking place). These Orders can be imposed for periods of up to one year. People subject to such Orders will wear an electronic monitoring device or “tag” to monitor compliance with the Order and be monitored by the Scottish Government contracted service provider.

These Orders are generally used for higher tariff offences. A breach of this Order can result in a custodial sentence being imposed by the Court. This type of disposal is used by the Court as an alternative to custody or where another community penalty would have imposed substantial demands on the person.