Offender Rehabilitation Act 2014

Offender Rehabilitation Act 2014 (C. 11)

(Royal Assent 13 March 2014)1

This Act implemented a number of the government’s proposals published in the consultation paper Transforming Rehabilitation: A Revolution in the Way We Manage Offenders (January 2013) and the follow-up document Transforming Rehabilitation: A Strategy for Reform2 (Cm 8619, May 2013) as regards the sentencing, release and supervision of offenders.

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Post-release supervision

Previously, offenders serving prison sentences of less than 12 months were normally released automatically from prison at the halfway point in the sentence without receiving any compulsory supervision or being subject to other conditions. (However, they could be made to serve the unexpired portion of their sentences if they reoffended before its expiry.) Those serving longer sentences were normally subject to a period of conditional supervised ‘licence’ on release (see Penal System Chapter 7, section 7.3).

Sections 1, 2 and 8 of the Act ensure that everyone sentenced to prison for more than one day will be subject to at least 12 months compulsory supervision and other conditions following release. Short-term prisoners may be required to undertake drug treatment, mentoring or other programmes as a condition of their release. (In force 1.2.2015)

Supervision and rehabilitation of female offenders

Section 10 introduces a requirement that contracts with private firms and voluntary organisations to provide services for the supervision or rehabilitation of offenders must state what provision, if any, is intended to meet the particular needs of female offenders. (In force 1.6.14)

Community orders and suspended sentence orders

Section 15 creates a new rehabilitation activity requirement for community orders and suspended sentence orders (to replace the supervision and activity requirements, which are to be abolished). (In force 1.2.2015)