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The differing attitudes of employers towards criminal records makes securing a job even harder

Having received a particularly negative response to her criminal record from an employer (despite having worked for them on a temporary basis), Christine was on the verge of changing career. However, a more positive approach at her next interview convinced Christine that although the job she’d applied

Help Unlock challenge the government’s criminal records regime

On Wednesday, we launched a CrowdJustice appeal to help us raise money to pay for our legal costs in intervening in the Supreme Court next month. In June, the Supreme Court will hear the appeal of the Government which is arguing that their current approach to disclosing old and

Is ‘sealing’ criminal records the best way to help people turn their lives around?

Following David Lammy’s review of disproportionality in the criminal justice system, the spotlight is rightly on how to address the embedded inequalities and discriminatory practices that are driving the over-representation of black and minority ethnic groups. As part of this though, he has recognised the broader significant

Piece in The Economist – “In Britain, criminal records dog offenders for decades”

Yesterday The Economist published an excellent piece, making the point that “the long memory of the law may limit the chance of rehabilitation”. Following the recent Law Commission report, and ahead of the Court of Appeal hearing into the current DBS filtering legal challenge, the article highlights Britain’s punitive

Why do employers use criminal records? And why don’t they make their policy clearer?

I’ve just seen Unlock’s project aimed at employers. This looks at making the system fairer for people with convictions who are going through the recruitment process. I think this is a great idea. When I was looking for work, it was so frustrating applying for jobs, having

UK versus the USA – The Criminal Records Debate

I have a older sister, a Green card holder, who resides in the USA, and I’ve travelled there many times pre the 9/11 attacks. I am deeply proud to say that as a reformed and rehabilitated law abiding ex-criminal with spent convictions, I have considered going back

Scarred for Life: The Retention of Criminal Records and the Lack of Rehabilitation

By Ivan Marazion I write this article as someone who, in my younger days, had issues with addiction. Like many people who fall into addiction, I also fell into petty crime and in my late teens was convicted of theft and burglary. I must take responsibility for

Criminal Records Ruin Lives

Obsidian Black It’s now more than thirty-three years since I was released from prison. I thought then, naively, that the worst was over. I had served two years of a three and a half year sentence. But I didn’t realise then that the real punishment hadn’t even

Re-Imagining the Use of Criminal Records in Europe

Andrew Henley In the context of the recent, but limited, reforms to the 1974 Rehabilitation of Offenders Act in England and Wales it is worthwhile considering different approaches to criminal record data which have been taken across continental Europe. To this end, I recently attended the 6th

Changes to filtering rules – Will you still need to disclose your criminal record?

On the 30 January 2019, the Supreme Court directed the government to fix the broken Disclosure and Barring Service system. The Supreme Court ruled that two aspects of the filtering regime – as it applied to multiple convictions and childhood cautions – was disproportionate and in breach

Why are insurance companies still discriminating against those with a criminal record?

Having just gone through the process of renewing his car and home insurance policies, Leo asks why more isn’t being done to challenge the excessive premiums insurance companies are imposing on people with a criminal record. I was convicted of fraud in March 2017 and received a

Despite my criminal record, I am a good Samaritan

It’s important that any organisation working with the young or vulnerable carry out proper risk assessments and, as George’s story shows, formal criminal record checks and assessments don’t automatically lead to you being refused a voluntary role. Just over two years ago I was convicted of an