Nominate a project in Stamford, Bourne and the Deepings for Community Payback offenders
An appeal has been made for people to nominate community projects for offenders to tackle as part of the Community Payback scheme.
Community Payback is a punishment which requires offenders to pay back the community for the crimes they have committed with unpaid work.
New projects in Lincolnshire are particularly needed after the police and crime commissioner Marc Jones committed £34,000 to support and expand the scheme.
It is believed to be a UK first for a commissioner to ask residents to help suggest the nature of criminal justice interventions in this way.
The funding from Mr Jones will pay for an extra supervisor to oversee teams of offenders and for transport to get them to and from places of work.
Around 80 per cent of people in the area who carry out unpaid work schemes avoid reoffending within 12 months of taking part. As a result, Mr Jones believes investing in the activity is highly effective as a way of reducing crime in Lincolnshire communities.
All projects are designed to combine hard work for the offenders and the chance to learn new skills.
Projects range from gardening and environmental works to redecorating community centres and working in charity shops, but Mr Jones is keen to see the work options widened.
Schemes undertaken in Lincolnshire already include litter picking, maintenance, landscaping, hedge-cutting, strimming, weeding, painting and cleaning, as well as tidying up at cemeteries.
“The community payback scheme is a fantastic opportunity for communities to get some reparation for the damage done but also a way of both punishing and rehabilitating the offenders who carry out the damage,” said Mr Jones.
“I am committed to helping extend this scheme and that is why I have pledged additional funding but I would ask communities to play their part and suggest projects that can be taken on.
“It’s a way to make a positive difference to the lives of residents and help offenders to become useful members of society, give them training and a purpose and, hopefully, reduce reoffending.”
l Police are also keen to receive people's views on what their priorities should be when it comes to fighting crime. A survey is on page 77 which should be completed and returned to a variety of collection points by Friday, September 6.
More by this authorSuzanne Moon