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I am not my conviction – I am a good man

Over the last 15 months I have faced up to some harsh realities. Through my crimes I failed as a father, husband, son, brother and friend. I hurt the one’s I love and I will have to live with that forever. I have been honest with myself,

Forgiving v Forgetting – From the US

This was originally published by The Marshall Project. See the bottom of this post for more information.  In February of 2003, a much younger Barack Obama rose before the Illinois State Senate to introduce a new piece of legislation that, he said, contained a compromise. The bill

Second Hand – Giving somebody a second chance

Having developed a new hobby of ‘upcycling furniture’ I’d wandered into my local charity shop having seen a fantastic pine chest of drawers in the window, ideal for customising for my spare bedroom.  Fantastic, lovely heavy piece of furniture, no damage, no woodworm – it’s mine. As

Developing success from failure

My world came crashing down in November 2010 when I was given a 33 month prison sentence. I had never been in trouble before and the reality that I would be spending time at Her Majesty’s pleasure started to dawn on me. The first few weeks in

Problems with employment for serving inmates

I am an inmate at an open prison. I have been at the establishment for around 6 months now, already having served a sizable amount of time, and I am in the process of rebuilding my life. I am fortunate enough to have good family support and

The prizes in life we fail to win, is because we doubt the strength within

As my Mum always told me throughout my sentence, I urge you to listen, “The prizes in life we fail to win, is because we doubt the strength within”. In the May of 1999 my life fell apart! I was convicted of the importation of a class

New Life, New Business – New Problems

Ten years ago I received a conviction for a sexual offence. I can’t tell you how hard it is for me to say that, I am still filled with feelings of disgust and utterly ashamed at what I did. At the time, my life was out of

Disclosing to employers, dealing with rejection and being persistent

I’m currently on my way to London to give a training session on ‘disclosing criminal convictions to employers’.  “Been there, done that” I think.  It’s been almost three years to the day since I walked out of those prison gates – no job, middle-aged and back to

Coming clean

by Craig The 1990s were not the most successful years of my life. Even now at a distance of 18 years it is still difficult to see where the success of being elected on to my local Metropolitan Borough Council, and the rapid rise through its hierarchy

Rehabilitation, Rejection and Resilience

by Simon   I was very pleased to find out that the reforms to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (1974) will apply from 10th March. I was sentenced to 3 years imprisonment in March 2004, and thought that I would have to declare my criminal conviction for

‘I’m going to move on now’ – A follow up by Obsidian

I last wrote here about 9 months months ago. Since then there has been a change. New amendments to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act are coming into force this month. Since March 10th, I  no longer need to tell many potential employers, insurance companies or other interested

A Position of Trust

By Aaron   Should those with unspent convictions should be employed in a place of trust? I worked in mental health services for nearly 5 years without any blemishes to my work record. The management asked me if I would undertake a diploma or degree in psychosocial