Renfrewshire Council

Community Service Orders

Community Service requires individuals with convictions to undertake supervised unpaid work in the community for the number of hours imposed by the court.

Community Service was replaced by an Unpaid Work Requirement of a Community Payback Order (CPO), for anyone convicted of offences committed from 1st February 2011.  Information on CPOs can be found in the 'Related articles' section.  However if sentenced for an offence committed prior to this date then a Community Service Order can still be imposed.

These orders give those convicted of offences the chance to provide a useful service back to the community, while at the same time learning new skills.  The order stays in force until all hours are completed.  They can be imposed as a direct alternative to custody and thus a breach of this order could result in a custodial sentence.

The court can order an individual to work for between 80 and 300 hours and this will normally be completed within a year.

Before individuals commence their work placement, they must attend an appointment to decide what is the most appropriate form of work for them and the community.  They must also attend a health and safety session.

Community work includes:

  1. Painting and decorating;

  2. Gardening;

  3. Improving the environment and landscaping; and

  4. Joinery.

They might also get an individual placement such as a charity shop.

All community service orders are enforced rigorously.  If the terms and conditions of the order are broken, the order will be taken back to court where the court can:

  1. Let the individual continue with the order;

  2. Let them finish the order and give them a fine; or

  3. Revoke the order and sentence them for their original offence.