8. Young people subject to a Community Payback Order
Are there opportunities to divert young people from prosecution when they are subject to a Community Payback Order?
Local relationships between the police and social work could also assist in considering new offences where a young person is subject to a Community Payback Order. Under 18s made subject to a Community Payback Order will have a supervision requirement put in place. This means that they will have an allocated worker who will provide support to fulfil the requirements of their Community Payback Order. The allocated worker can also provide support on personal motivation, behaviour change, anger management, substance misuse, engagement with education, training or employment, support with accommodation issues and individual counselling. There are nine requirements that can be imposed as part of a Community Payback Order and, depending on the circumstances of the case, there may in limited situations be other requirements attached, for example a mental health treatment requirement. These could also be contributing additional support to the young person.
If during this period a new offence is committed, there is an opportunity to flag this offence with the relevant Social Work Office as they will be working with this young person on some of the issues noted above. How the allocated worker is made aware of these offences will need to be agreed at a local level between police and social work but this can be done using a weekly list of offences. Other arrangements will need to be made for custody cases. The allocated worker can then contact the Procurator Fiscal for consideration as to whether prosecution is necessary when work is ongoing with the young person. These measures should help ensure that young people are not subject to a higher tariff intervention than necessary.