Low-level offenders to plant trees to ease pressure on prisons

Offenders convicted of crimes such as drink driving and shoplifting are planting trees instead of serving short sentences in prison.

Photo by Tim Hüfner on Unsplash

The Standard reports the offenders will plant more than 4,000 trees in London this winter as part of the Community Payback Scheme.

Community payback also referred to as community service and unpaid work refers to an offender needing to complete a set number of hours as supervised by the probation service. Unpaid work as sentencing, dates back to 1973 and is seen as a credible punishment that provides community reparation and rehabilitation for the offender.

Over the past three winters, 7000 trees have been planted as part of the scheme. Speaking to the Standard, the head of unpaid work Jo White said that it was making a real difference both for the offenders as well as the community.