On 22 March 2017, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe (CoE) adopted a new guidelines document for organisations managing community sanctions and measures in Member States.  This document – CM/Rec (2017)3 – Recommendation on the European Rules on Community Sanctions and Measures (CSM), was developed by the CoE’s Council for Penological Co-operation (the PC-CP).

Rules about CSM were first adopted in 1992 in form of the Recommendation No. R(92) 16, European Rules on Community sanctions and measures.1 Another Recommendation on “improving the implementation of the European rules on community sanctions and measures” Rec (2000)22 was adopted in 2000.2 The Council believes that an update was required, bringing together the substance of the two earlier Recommendations and taking account of the many changes that have taken place since 2000. The starting point was to study these two earlier Recommendations.

The new document, which combines, updates and replaces two previous recommendations on CSMs, from 1992 and 2000 respectively, can be downloaded here.

The Council of Europe has an unique experience in promoting more humane and socially effective prisons. To this end a number of legal instruments have been adopted including the European Prison Rules and recommendations on education in prison, prison staff, health care in prison and prison overcrowding. These legal instruments have been brought together in one publication, the Compendium of conventions, recommendations and resolutions relating to penitentiary questions.

These instruments have been prepared by either the Council for Penological Cooperation, which is a standing advisory body to the European Committee on Crime Problems, or by ad hoc expert committees.


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