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35,000 hours of unpaid work handed out to Devon and Cornwall criminals

By NDJWill  |  Posted: February 13, 2013

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THE Devon and Cornwall Probation Trust has revealed more than 35,000 hours worth of unpaid work were handed out to criminals last year.

And of those 35,000 hours just more than 23,000, or 67 per cent, were completed.

The number of hours completed are lower for a variety of reasons, and can include an order being revoked for good behaviour. Some of the hours offenders were ordered to complete are also still being worked off.

Richard Wakley, manager for unpaid work in Cornwall and West Devon said: “Hundreds of projects were done as payback to communities throughout Devon and Cornwall in 2012.

“These included decorating community centres, coastal path and undergrowth clearance and graffiti removal.

“All these projects have benefited the local community. The work is challenging, demanding, worthwhile and constructive. The offenders can be seen putting something back into the community.”

And Geraldine Ford, the manager for unpaid work in North, East and South Devon said there are examples of offenders helping the community everywhere.

She said: “Barnstaple Sea Cadets are based in a prominent building on Rolle Quay, which was in need of refurbishment.

“One offender on a 160 hour unpaid work order worked for seven and a half hours every Saturday for more than six months to paint the building and provide general help.

“This visible robust and consistent work is of direct benefit to the local community in North Devon.”

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4 comments

  • Probation  |  March 04 2013, 3:43PM

    People who are ordered to do Community Payback are being punished. They have to give up their liberty for up to 300 hours a year to do worthwhile projects which give something back to local communities. They work on all kind of projects, from clearing canals in Cornwall to help prevent further flooding, to cooking and serving meals for the needy in Devon. Community Payback also offers good value for the tax payer at £4000 a year per offender on average, as opposed to the £40,000 it would cost to lock someone up for a year. By the way, over 186,000 hours were ordered in 2012, and around 135,000 hours were completed. The figure for completions is less because - among other reasons, some people had their order revoked for good behaviour. Others may have been returned to court as part of breach action, which demonstrates the robustness of Probation Offender Managers, who help to ensure that Community Payback, and other Probation work is carried out as well as possible.

  • headhunter267  |  February 14 2013, 9:37AM

    Love the really relevant picture Herald. You could have used a photo of one of the visible "workers" doing some "robust and consistent" work. Course you'd have to find one first. Then you'd have to ask his permission, he has rights after all, then the permission of the probation staff probably on £20 an hour while they supervise him. And never mind this painting the sea cadets hut caper. Some hard graft cleaning, carrying or harvesting would be more apt. I have an image of a chain gang. Bit extreme, but at least it would be a penance as well as useful to society. Can one of the apparently many managers for unpaid work in Devon and Cornwall tell us exactly how much of the hours sentenced are worked? I imagine we include travel time as time worked, and breaks, and lunch? Lastly. What happens to those 33%, That's a third, who don't finish their arduous community punishment. I'll take a guess. They get a different community punishment that doesn't involve working! I'm wth Shipmateron. Pass the castration clamps. No anaesthetic required......

    |   -3
  • mcspredder  |  February 13 2013, 9:57PM

    If there is work available, advertise it and take somebody on and pay them. If there was no crime for a month how many jobs would have to be made available? How about making criminals be part-time police for a few weeks? Solves the staffing level problem and, since they do it for free, no rise in council tax.

    |   2
  • shipmateron  |  February 13 2013, 8:06PM

    Cut their balls off, now that really would benefit the community. Imagine it, no more sprogs of time waster losers growing up to become time waster losers. What this article fails to report on is how much this 'unpaid work' costs us. It's only the offenders who don't get paid, everyone else involved is on a wage. Then there's the cost of insurance, office space, materials....this is not a cheap option, and then they just re-offend so there are more victims. Cut their balls off. Job done.

    |   -4

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