Author Don Weatherburn and Lily Trimboli
Published February 2008
Report Type Crime and Justice Bulletin No. 112
Subject Recidivism / Re-offending; Sentencing; Statistical methods and modelling
Keywords Re-offending, supervised bonds, propensity matching

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This bulletin presents the results of two studies bearing on the effectiveness of supervised bonds as a means of reducing re-offending.


Convicted offenders are often subjected to some form of supervision to reduce the risk of further offending. To date, however, there has been no Australian research into the effectiveness of supervision in reducing reoffending. This bulletin presents the results of two studies. The first assesses the effectiveness of supervision by comparing re-offending (as measured by re-conviction) among adult offenders placed on supervised bonds, to re-offending among a matched sample of such offenders placed on unsupervised bonds. The results of this study indicate that offenders placed on supervised bonds are no less likely to re-offend than offenders placed on unsupervised bonds. The second study involves a survey of New South Wales Parole staff designed to shed light on the findings of the first study. The second study finds evidence of significant barriers to the rehabilitation of adult offenders on supervised bonds in NSW, including lack of access to suitable mental health, drug and alcohol and disability services, difficulties securing stable and affordable accommodation and inadequate supervision.

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