The intensive supervision and surveillance programme (ISS) is the most rigorous non-custodial intervention available for young offenders. It combines unprecedented levels of community-based surveillance with a comprehensive and sustained focus on tackling the factors that contribute to offending behaviour.
The scheme targets the most active repeat young offenders and also those who commit the most serious crimes. The main aims of the programme are to:
- Reduce the frequency and seriousness of offending in the target groups
- Tackle the underlying needs of offenders, with particular emphasis on education and training
- Provide reassurance to communities through close surveillance backed up by rigorous enforcement.
As part of ISS young people undertake a range of activities including reparative activities, restoring the costs of crime and reintegration back into the community. The aim of the programme is lasting change for young people and their families and reassurance to victims and the community.
A core part of the programme also focuses on education and training needs, allowing young people to develop their skills and become more employable. Every young person has their own plan, tailored to tackle the root causes of their offending behaviour. It provides very troubled young people with an opportunity to turn their lives around.
Electronically monitored curfew
All young people on ISS are subject to an electronically monitored curfew, with any non-compliance reported to the Youth Offending Service within 24 hours.
Young people are required to report for up to 25 hours of activities each week during the length of the programme (typically six to twelve months).
ISS can be part of bail supervision and support, or it can be part of a sentence made by a court. Some young people who are finishing custody sentences also go on ISS to help them resettle in their community.
Failure to comply
Failure to co-operate with the rules means going back to court (usually within a week). If the young person does not show enough commitment to the programme they may well be sent to custody. Supervision is provided 365 days a year, often outside of office hours and at weekends. This allows the team to respond to a young person’s needs and minimise the risk they may pose to others.