Community Payback must be more intensive and delivered within days of an offender being sentenced, new Minister for Probation Jeremy Wright said today.
His call for tougher payback came during a visit to Staffordshire and West Midlands Probation Trust where he met frontline staff working to protect the public and punish and rehabilitate offenders.
As he watched offenders clearing away rubbish on public footpaths as part of a Community Payback project in Sandwell Jeremy Wright said:
'I am delighted to be able to see Community Payback in action in Sandwell - we want it to be more immediate, more intensive and more rigorous.
'If the public are to have confidence in community sentences, it is vital offenders are seen paying back with hard work in the very communities they have damaged.'
During his visit the Minister also saw how serious offenders are managed through Multi Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) and the important role approved premises play in resettling them into communities in a controlled and supervised environment.
Mike Maiden, Chief Executive of Staffordshire and West Midlands Probation Trust said:
'SWM Probation welcomes the opportunity to meet our new Minister and demonstrate the innovative work we're doing in Staffordshire and the West Midlands. We are proud to show him our close partnership work that protects the public and reduces reoffending.'