Northumberland Gazette readers say prison is more effective than community orders

In a Facebook poll Northumberland Gazette readers have overwhelmingly favour short prison sentences over community orders.

By Tony Gillan
Thursday, 17th October 2019, 5:54 pm
Updated Thursday, 31st October 2019, 1:12 pm
A large majority of our readers want short prison sentences, rather than community orders.
A large majority of our readers want short prison sentences, rather than community orders.

Justice Secretary Robert Buckland told MPs that better alternatives to short periods behind bars, like community orders, were more likely to be successful. However, he does not want to scrap the option of custody.

We asked in our poll: “Which do you think is a more effective punishment: a six-month jail sentence or a community order?”

Of the 320 people who had voted at time of writing, 79% said prison, 21% said community orders.

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Ronald Branley said: “Whatever the sentence is, be it six months or six years, they should serve that time no reduction for a guilty plea.”

David Cockburn thought: “We need to move towards a more rehabilitation system for ‘petty criminals”.’ ninety-nine percent of the time there are underlying causes for these crimes; especially in today’s foodbank climate.

Gary Andrew Morrison Snr said: “It all depends on the crime and if there a repeat offender to determine which will be effective. And if the crime is drug or drink related, they should go to a rehab programme.”

Lily Oak Hannington said: “Your question is part of the problem. It's not about ‘punishment’, it's about making the person an effective member of their community again; one who doesn’t need or want crime in their lives. You don’t do that by putting them in a cell.”

Jacqui Keun said: “I think the problem is that neither are effective. We need to restructure the whole system towards rehabilitation to reduce re-offending as in Norway and not punishment.”