Briefing on amendment to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill at the House of Lords Committee Stage

This briefing is on the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill as it enters the Committee stage in the House of Lords. It addresses Part 6 (about cautions) and Part 7 (about sentencing). It urges support for two new clauses.

Young adults receive 31% of all cautions for low-level, non-violent offences driven by their multiple unmet needs. Used effectively, cautions with conditions attached can divert young adults away from the criminal justice system into services that can turn their lives around.

Each year, 30,000 people go to prison on sentences of less than six months. The majority of these are for nonviolent offences, often linked to underlying problems such as poverty, addiction, homelessness and poor mental health. Short sentences are costly, and the tide is already turning against them.

This briefing urges support for two new clauses and the first would ensure that conditions support and encourage the reduction of reoffending. The second would introduce a presumption against short prison sentences.