ACT reforms to sentencing
The ACT is undergoing significant changes in respect of sentencing laws. The Legislative Assembly Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety is currently conducting an inquiry into sentencing and is expected to deliver its report in early 2014. The terms of reference include the law, legal doctrine and rationale of contemporary sentencing practice; comparisons with other jurisdictions; rates of successful sentencing appeals; and timeliness in handing down decisions and sentences.
In March 2014, the ACT government announced its intention to phase out the use of periodic detention by 2016–17. The ACT is currently the only Australian jurisdiction that uses periodic detention, with NSW having abolished it in 2010. In April 2014, the ACT Corrections Minister, Shane Rattenbury, confirmed that moving away from periodic detention would ‘make way for future alternative options which may include intensive community correction orders, which will more effectively deliver on our goals of rehabilitation and reduced rates of incarceration’.