Statistics have been released which reveal a substantial drop in reconvictions in Scotland, with the number of offenders being reconvicted falling to a 19-year low.
The National Statistics show that in 2015-16, almost three-quarters of people in Scotland who were released from prison or given a non-custodial sentence were not reconvicted within 12 months. This is a substantial change compared to statistics from a decade ago where two-thirds of those convicted were then reconvicted in the first 12 months of their release.
Scotland has seen a continuous decrease in reconvictions over the past decade. In comparison to 2014-15, the 2015-16 reconviction rate and the number of convictions per offender has continued to fall. The reconviction rate has dropped by 1.3%, from 28.3% to 27.0% and the average number of reconvictions per offender has decreased by 6%.
Justice Secretary, Humza Yousaf announced the statistics which also highlighted that those released from a short sentence are reconvicted within the initial 12 months almost twice as often as those given a community payback order (CPO). The reconviction rate for CPO’s has fallen 2.1% from 2014-15, and the reconvictions per offender for CPO’s has shown a substantial drop of 8%.
In a statement discussing Scotland’s steady decrease in reconvictions, Humza Yousaf stated:
“Scotland has continued to reduce the number of people who re-offend, implementing a clear focus on rehabilitation, working alongside partners in local government, the third sector and Scottish Prison Service, to help many people with convictions turn their lives around.”