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WORK: JANUARY 2006 94/2005


The purpose of this circular is to update areas on a number of developments 29 December 2005
within Unpaid Work.
ACTION: Immediate
Chief Officers are asked to:
1. Note the setting up of a Project Board to consider the future development EXPIRY DATE:
of Unpaid Work and consider making nominations for membership, by
January 2011
31st January.
2. Provide data, using the attached template, to NPD every three months.
The next collection date will be 31 January 2006 and data should be TO:
provided for the period October – December. Chairs of Probation Boards
3. Note the piloting of Unpaid Work as part of a Conditional Caution. Chief Officers of Probation
Secretaries of Probation Boards
1. A template for data collection is attached; this should be completed and CC:
Board Treasurers
2. A Project Board has been set up to review current delivery arrangements
Regional Managers
for Unpaid Work, incorporating the most suitable elements of the ECP
scheme with Community Payback and Visible Unpaid Work.
3. Conditional cautions schemes are currently running as pilots with police AUTHORISED BY:
the main participants. The Unpaid Work element of conditional cautions Meg Blumsom, Head of
will now be piloted. Community Reintegration

PC59/2004; PC25/2005 Annex A (provided electronically

National Probation Directorate

Horseferry House, Dean Ryle Street, London, SW1P 2AW

1. In August 2005, by means of PC 66/2005, areas were asked to nominate a senior manager to collect information
on a monthly basis on the number of offenders who:
i) Do not commence orders within the required timescale
ii) Are not offered the required six hours work each week
iii) Are instructed in advance that they should not report for work
iv) Are sent home, having reported for work, because insufficient work/supervisor coverage is available.

2. In September 2005, areas were issued with further detail about the data collection requirements and, in early
October, this information was collected by means of telephone contact from NPD. Six months of retrospective
information was requested. Whereas in some areas which had already established their own internal monitoring
systems, this was readily available, for other areas it represented much more of a challenge. The effort many
areas put into collecting as good information as they could is recognised and appreciated, and contributed to
providing a broad national picture across England and Wales. Many areas, whilst only able to collect limited
retrospective information, have now put systems in place so that this will be available in future.

3. As the visibility campaign gets underway across NPS, the monitoring of this information is critical. The primary
purpose of the visibility campaign is to promote public confidence in community sentences, so it is essential that
this is not undermined by performance which does not meet the expectations of the public or of sentencers and
does not comply with National Standards. This data will therefore continue to be collected but the intention is to
align it as closely as possible with other data collection systems and not to create extra work for probation areas.
Discussions have begun and are continuing with the NOMIS team, the Regions and Performance Management
Unit and the Research, Development and Statistics Directorate to discuss how this can be achieved. The issue
has been discussed by the Data Standards Reference Group to ensure that area representatives have been able
to comment. It will take time to reach a final decision so there will still need to be a separate process to collect

4. In the light of feedback from areas, the template has been modified and is attached as Annex A. THIS IS ONLY
PROVIDED ELECTRONICALLY. The category ‘eligible’ does not include offenders who are on a warrant,
suspended, awaiting outcome of breach, on certified long term sickness, awaiting revocation, or where National
Standards have been legitimately suspended ( i.e. for reasons related to the offender’s circumstances, not
operational difficulties in the area).

This should be filled and returned quarterly as follows

31st Jan – for October – December

30th April – for January – March
31st July – for April – June
31st October – for July – September

5. Action: The first return using this form should be submitted on 31 January 2006 to Paris Mikkides in the
Performance and Regions Unit.


6. When Enhanced Community Punishment was implemented in 2003 it was anticipated that all elements of the
scheme would be used with all offenders performing Community Punishment Orders as long as their OASys
assessment indicated a need for the intervention. In response to a growth in the number of orders made,
PC59/2004 introduced an element of discretion and flexibility into the scheme. Areas were given permission to
manage offenders with OGRS scores below 41 without making Guided Skills Learning available to them and
using larger workgroups where appropriate.

7. Since then the Criminal Justice Act 2003 has replaced the Community Punishment Order with the Unpaid Work
requirement. Requirements for the completion of OASys have changed and completion is no longer prepared on
many offenders performing Unpaid Work. The notional separation of Interventions from Offender Management
has brought about structural changes with implications for the delivery of unpaid work. The introduction of the
Community Payback Scheme has introduced yet more changes.

PC94/2005 – Developments in Unpaid Work: January 2006 2

8. A Project Board has been convened and as one of its tasks will review current delivery arrangements for Unpaid
Work and consider which elements of the ECP scheme should be retained and which need to be modified to fit
into the present environment. The Project Board is aware of the importance of retaining high quality delivery
whilst balancing this with ensuring that requirements are carried out efficiently and in accordance with National
Standards. Community Payback and Visible Unpaid Work must also be incorporated into delivery arrangements.
The Board will meet four times per year, based in London.

9. On the basis of decisions made, the Project Board will oversee the preparation of new Performance Standards,
an Unpaid Work Manual and a Training Programme to support this. It is recognised that uncertainties will remain
in the short term but it is important that these issues are given careful consideration and sustainable decisions

10. The Project Board has already met and taken the decision to seek two further members to be drawn from senior
or middle managers in areas.

11. Action: Chief Officers should circulate details of the Board to members of staff, either senior or middle
managers with operational responsibility for Unpaid Work. Applications should be sent to Janet Corcoran,
providing a name and experience of or interest in Unpaid Work, no later than 31st January.


12. Conditional cautioning schemes have been running as pilots in seven police authorities for the past year and
have been led by the police and the CPS. The OCJR and the RESPECT team are keen to increase the use of
Unpaid Work as an option in a conditional caution.

13. The seven Probation areas where conditional cautions have already been piloted (Lancashire, Thames Valley,
South Yorkshire, West Mercia, Northumbria, West Midlands and Merseyside) will be invited to join with police
colleagues to provide an Unpaid Work option. The aim is to test out a limited number of models of delivery,
including use of the voluntary sector as scheme managers. This will allow longer term funding options to be
considered. It is possible that one or two more sites might be needed and Chief Officers are asked to consider
whether they would be interested in developing conditional cautioning alongside their police authorities.

14. Funding is available to support the delivery of the pilots. It is anticipated that the numbers receiving conditional
cautions would be low. It is not possible to estimate how the scheme would grow. In Lancashire, the only police
authority where conditional cautions have been rolled out fully, there were only a total of 127 cautions in the last
year, and 107 of those cautioned were required to pay compensation to the victim (sometimes with letters of
apologies). There was only one incidence where the offender was asked to do Unpaid Work. Not withstanding
this, it is possible that if there were easier access to a formally organised scheme there would be an increase in
usage of Unpaid Work

15. The research and evaluation of the work will be the responsibility of the Conditional Cautioning team.

16. A briefing meeting will be arranged at the end of January for those areas where the police are already piloting
conditional cautioning. If any other area is interested, then they should contact Sebastian Falk for details.

17. for further information on the proposed pilots please contact Sebastian Falk

PC94/2005 – Developments in Unpaid Work: January 2006 3

NPS Enhanced Community Punishment (ECP) and Unpaid Work Throughput Monitoring Return 2005-06

Probation Area: Report Period:

1. Total number of offenders with unpaid work requirements1 in the area at the end of the reporting period
2. Total number of offenders (included in answer to Question 1) who were not eligible2 for work at the end of the reporting period
3. Average number of days3 which elapsed between the pre-placement work session and the date for which the first work instruction was given4
4. Total number of offender days worked5
5. Number of offender days lost because offenders have been instructed in advance not to report for work
6. Number of offender days lost because offenders have been sent home after reporting for work due to insufficient supervisor coverage, transport or work availability, etc

Include offenders on Community Punishment Orders and Community Punishment & Rehabilitation orders in this figure
Offenders who are not eligible for work include those who are on warrant, suspended, awaiting outcome of breach, on certified long-term sickness, awaiting revocation, or where
National Standards have been legitimately suspended (i.e. for reasons related to the offender’s circumstances, not operational difficulties in the area)
This figure should be calculated using a 7 day week, not the 5 day ‘working week.’
This is the date on which the offender is first required to attend a work placement. It includes cases where the offender has been instructed but has not attended. It does not include
cases where a work instruction has been given but has been withdrawn by the area either beforehand or on the day itself.
Attendance by an offender at a work session, irrespective of the actual number of hours actually worked, counts as one offender day. This should exclude the Post Sentence
Assessment Interview, the Pre Placement Work Session and any instances where an offender reports for work and is subsequently sent home in circumstances detailed in Question

Area Contact Name: Telephone No:

Completed returns should be sent via e-mail to: to arrive by the last working day of the month following the reporting period, as
indicated in PC 94/2005