DARTFORD MP Gareth Johnson has praised the new Offender Rehabilitation Act which came into law earlier this month.
The new law means 50,000 short-term prisoners, who would have left prison with no support, will now receive at least 12-month’s supervision in the community on release from custody.
Around 85,000 crimes are committed every year by prisoners released from short sentences and it is hoped this legislation will mean those offenders will now get the support they need to turn their lives around and start contributing to society, rather than damaging it.
Gareth Johnson said: “This is one of the most progressive things this Government has carried out to tackle reoffending”
“I worked for 20 years in the criminal justice system for 20 years and I saw first-hand a complete lack of assistance for short term prisoners.
“We have had prisoners being given £46 in their pocket and being shown the door and that is it. We shouldn’t be surprised they have the highest reoffending rates.
“For the first time these people will now be given assistance to stay away from crime and this is being achieved within existing budgets.
“We already know people who receive more than 12 months in prison are less likely to reoffend because they receive assistance.
“Short-term sentences have their place but they need to be coupled with support on release. We are going to watch very closely the reoffending rates in future.”