UNGRIPP believes that people should make their own minds up about what should happen with the IPP sentence.
Below, we provide the options that have been set out by legal scholars, criminal justice professionals, those affected by the IPP sentence, and other campaigns.
We then explain the options UNGRIPP is campaigning for, and why.
OPTIONS FOR CHANGE
Convert each IPP sentence to a straight sentence, with a defined release date and license period (or a life sentence if the case merits it).
Give each IPP sentence a ‘sunset clause’.
A ‘sunset clause’ is a maximum amount of time that a person who was given an IPP would be allowed to serve before they must be released.
This option would completely remove the IPP sentence from those thought to have received it most unjustly. This would be most likely to be those that received a tariff of under two years (because their crimes were less serious), who are still in prison.
CHANGE THE RELEASE TEST
Currently, the Parole Board must apply the ‘risk test’ to all people serving an IPP applying for release. They must prove that they are no longer a risk to society, which can be very difficult to do from prison. A proposed change to this test is that the burden should instead fall on the Parole Board to prove that the person is still a risk to society.
SHORTEN, AND REFORM, THE LICENSE PERIOD.
Currently people serving an IPP can apply to have their license removed after 10 years in the community (although there is no guarantee of this happening). This option would reduce that period (most suggest 5 years). It would also involve other changes, such as requiring the Parole Board to approve recall to prison, and disallowing recall for minor license breaches.
END THE IPP SENTENCE UPON RELEASE
This option proposes that a person’s IPP sentence should be ended once they are released from prison. Any further offences by that person should be given a fresh sentence.
THE UNGRIPP CAMPAIGN
JUSTICE REFORM SUPPORT
Our perspective on the IPP is simple:
The state of the sentence now, undermines its ability to achieve anything meaningful.
A banned sentence cannot rehabilitate, protect or punish.
But it does cause pain, damage, and waste money.
The IPP sentence should be abolished retrospectively, and every IPP should be resentenced according to the seriousness of their crime.
Whilst it continues to exist, the license portion of the IPP sentence should be reformed to make it fit for purpose.
Every IPP should receive a full package of support, that reflects the damage caused by the sentence.