Community safety partnership

Community payback

Offenders are sentenced to thousands of hours of unpaid work by the courts every year.

Their unpaid work is called 'community payback' because it:

  • benefits the areas where offences were committed
  • helps to repay local communities for the crimes committed

The types of work to be done as part of community payback are often nominated by local people.

Nominate a community payback project

Anyone can nominate a project for community payback, either as an individual or through membership of a club, community group, faith group or voluntary organisation.

To nominate a project, go to GOV.UK: Nominate a Community Payback project.

How community sentences help

Community sentences are used in law as a type of punishment, but they can also stop offenders committing more crime by helping them deal with their problems.

For example, community sentences can include treatments and programmes to help offenders with:

  • addictions
  • mental health conditions
  • getting new skills and qualifications

Community payback projects can help offenders:

  • learn the value of meaningful work in society
  • get experience of working as part of a team, starting and finishing on time
  • gain skills that can help with future employment away from crime when their unpaid work ends