Scotland Performs Update

Scottish Government performance information

National Outcome: We live our lives safe from crime, disorder and danger

Community Justice Services


  • The Community Justice Services budget supports collaboration and improvement across community justice services to prevent offending and improve life chances.
  • This includes a focus on early and targeted intervention to prevent offending and to reduce re‑offending by Improving links between employment, housing, health services, etc.
  • The budget supports efforts to increase the use of and confidence in community sentences, including the expansion of electronic monitoring.


  • The Community Justice Services budget totals £33.6m of revenue funding in 2017-18. This budget is in addition to £86.5m provided through central grants to local authorities to fund criminal justice social work services.


  • The average number of reconvictions per offender has decreased by 17% in the past decade. This fall has been driven significantly by those aged 25 and under, with average reconvictions falling by 20% for under 21 year olds and by 26% for the 21 to 25 age group.
  • There were 19,410 community payback orders imposed during 2015-16, 2% higher than in 2014

-15. 15,100 of these included unpaid work, resulting in over 1.8m hours of unpaid work being imposed on individuals on CPOs, delivering real benefits for communities.

  • The number of women in custody has fallen from 430 in June 2015 to 369 in November 2017.
  • From April 2017, Community Justice Scotland was established as a new national body to provide strategic leadership, training and insight to support community justice partners to prevent offending and reduce the number of future victims of crime.

Key partners

  • Community Justice Scotland
  • Local authorities
  • Social Work Scotland
  • Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service
  • Scottish Prison Service
  • Police Scotland
  • Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration
  • Health and Social Care Integrated Joint Boards
  • NHS Health Boards
  • Skills Development Scotland
  • Third Sector organisations, including SACRO and Apex Scotland.


The Community Justice Services budget supports a wide range of public and third sector-led initiatives. Two examples include:

Aberdeen Problem Solving Court

  • The pilot Problem Solving Court in Aberdeen Sheriff Court aims to reduce the use of short custodial sentences by providing new community disposals to women and young adult males with complex needs and multiple previous convictions.
  • It helps people, as part of sentencing, to address the underlying factors that can cause offending, including help with housing problems and access to drug and alcohol treatment.
  • Originally dealing exclusively with women who persistently commit lower level crimes and have complex needs, the pilot has been extended to support men aged 16-25 with a similar pattern of offending.

Caledonian Programme—integrated approach to tackling domestic abuse

  • The Programme combines a service for male offenders with support services for women and children affected by domestic abuse as both victim and witnesses.
  • Funding for the work with male offenders is provided through the Community Justice budget, with parallel funding for the work with women and children provided from the Equalities budget.
  • An independent evaluation of the Programme has found that women feel safer and that men who complete the programme pose a lower risk to partners, children and others by the end of the programme.

Contribution to National Outcomes

Community Justice Services funding contributes towards the National Outcome, by:

  • Reducing rates of re-offending
  • Reducing rates of victimisation
  • Reducing the use of ineffective short-term prison sentences
  • Improving health outcomes for those within the justice system
  • Improving public understanding of and confidence in the justice system.

The project contributes towards other National Outcomes, such as:


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