ONLY FOR MINOR OFFENCES: Community Service in the Netherlands

  • Miranda Boone (Willem Pompe Institute for Criminal Law and Criminology, University of Utrecht, The Netherlands, University of Groningen,

Community service for adults was introduced in the Netherlands in the first half of the 1980s as an alternative to custodial sentences. In 1989 it was accepted as a third formal sentence in the Penal Code for adults. Since that time the number of orders increased to 40.000 on a yearly basis. In general, the probation service has managed to deal successfully with this growth. It did have consequences, however for the involvement of the community and the degree of individualization and support. The initial object of decreasing imprisonment by offering an alternative has not been achieved. In terms of reducing recidivism, community service seems to be relatively

Keywords: Community service, the Netherlands, Sentencing, Probation service

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