In Sentencing Council strategic objectives 2021–2026 we set out the Council’s commitment to:

  • promote consistency and transparency in sentencing through the development and revision of sentencing guidelines;
  • ensure that all our work is evidence-based and will work to enhance and strengthen the data and evidence that underpins it;
  • explore and consider issues of equality and diversity relevant to our work and take any necessary action in response within our remit;
  • consider and collate evidence on effectiveness of sentencing and seek to enhance the ways in which we raise awareness of the relevant issues; and
  • work to strengthen confidence in sentencing by improving public knowledge and understanding of sentencing, including among victims, witnesses and offenders, as well as the general public.

The five-year strategy was written following a consultation held to mark the Council’s 10th anniversary in 2020. The purpose of the consultation was to make sure the strategy was shaped by the same expertise and experience that informs our guidelines.

We received 36 responses, including from legal professionals, academics, government departments, the Justice Select Committee, the Magistrates Association and a number of individual magistrates, charities and non-profits and others with an interest in sentencing and who represent those whose lives are affected by the guidelines, and the general public.

What next for the Sentencing Council? Consultation response analyses the responses and sets out the Council’s thinking and the rationale for the strategic objectives.