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What is an electronic tag?
A device, usually strapped to an offender's ankle that enables constant monitoring of there whereabouts by specialist contractors
For how long must the curfew last for offenders released from prison?
9 hours per day
For how long must the curfew last if it is used as a substitute for custodial sentencing?
- A period of up to 6 months
- 2-12 hour curfew per day
What restrictions are placed on an offender during curfew?
They cannot leave the house
What can breaches of curfew result in?
Re-arrest and further penalty including prison
In what year was a scheme of electronic tagging for young offenders introduced?
What was the aim of the Cassidy et al study of 2005?
To study the effectiveness of tagging juvenile offenders aged 12-16
What methodology was employed during the Cassidy et al study of 2005?
- Monitoring contracts, national statistics and youth offending teams were analysed
- Data from 315 tagged juveniles was looked at
- A small sample of offenders was also interviewed
What were the results of the Cassidy et al study of 2005?
- Tagging was used for the most persistent offenders (averaged more that 7 offences before being tagged)
- Of those tagged, 88% were young males and black males were over represented
- Tagging resulted in a 7% decrease in the numbers of offenders reaching bale
- Interviews suggested that the tags give offenders more of an excuse to stay out of trouble
What can be concluded from the Cassidy et al study of 2005?
Tagging of juveniles is used for the most persistent offenders and can be effective in some cases
What benefits does tagging have over custodial sentencing?
- It is much cheaper and helps reduce pressure on the ever expanding prison population
- Average daily cost of a prisoner: £75
- Average daily cost of tagging: £15
How can tagging be seen as an effective alternative to custodial sentencing?
- It provides some structure to offenders
- Prevents them from slipping back into old lifestyles and habits
- Also allows family relationships to be maintained
What are the drawbacks of tagging?
Family relationships may become strained as the curfew prevents the offender from taking a full part in family life (holidays)
Why may the general population object to tagging?
They may demand retribution and view the scheme as 'soft'