A Probation order can be imposed by the Court if someone is convicted of an offence which was committed before 1 February 2011. Offences committed after this date, a CPO (Community Payback Order) is now available. Probation is supervised by a social worker and focuses on changing the behaviour or attitude that contributed to them getting into trouble. This can be done individually or in groups.
The Court decides how long the order will last and it can be from six months to three years. Every Probation Order has standard conditions which the service user needs to comply with. These are:
- not commit any offences during the period of the order
- attend all appointments with their supervising officer.
- tell their supervising officer if they move, even for a short time or change their job
Other conditions can also be added by the Court. The most common is Community Service but could also be to attend alcohol or drug counselling, to get psychiatric support, or attend groupwork programmes.
Failure to keep to the conditions of a Probation Order results in a Breach of Probation Report being submitted to the Court by the supervising officer and, if the Breach is proven, the Court has the option of sentencing the person for the original offence as well as the new breach offence.
If the Probation Order is carried out and the service user successfully completes all the work asked of them, the supervising officer can apply to the Court for an early discharge of the Probation Order.
If you want more information please contact Social Work Resources on 0303 123 1008.