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Progress needed to curb re-offending rates

November 7, 2012 9:27 AM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrats have slammed the SNP government for failing to tackle re-offending rates and urged it to adopt a new approach to prisoner rehabilitation. The calls come after an Audit Scotland report has highlighted concerns with the SNP government's approach to reducing re-offending rates.

The party's justice spokesperson, Alison McInnes MSP, has said that the SNP government is failing communities across Scotland by allowing re-offending rates to continue.

Commenting on the report, Ms McInnes said:

"The SNP government should be ashamed of its paltry track record on reducing re-offending rates. If we are to stop the revolving doors to Scotland's prisons, successful rehabilitation must be a more significant part of our criminal justice system. Scottish Liberal Democrats urged the government earlier this year to take a new approach to rehabilitation which focuses on outcomes.

"Despite there being clear evidence of what works, Audit Scotland highlights a mismatch between that and what is currently being funded. If we are to make our communities safer and support ex-offenders to move on to make a positive contribution to society then public money must be spent more wisely.

"We are failing offenders and the communities we return them to by allowing re-offending rates to stagnate. It's time for a new approach to prisoner rehabilitation - beginning with the piloting of a Social Impact Bond in Scotland."