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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

Struggling to find work with a life licence

Despite his conviction being almost 20 years ago, Ed explains how employers still judge him on the person he was then and not the person he is now.     In 1999 I was tried and convicted of murder. I had never been in trouble before and

Getting permission from probation to return overseas to my husband and family

We’re always encouraging people to try and build good relationships with their probation officer, however difficult this can sometimes be. Rosie explains the assistance she was given by her probation officer and the benefits of seeking peer advice, in this case from the Unlock forum. To say

Banking on a new start – advice on opening a bank account with a criminal record

Having recently opened a basic bank account, Eric sets out some tips to guide others through the process.       For anybody that’s ever been to prison, you’ll know that all the time you’re there you lose all sense of personal identity and become a number

A long criminal record doesn’t have to stop you succeeding – My experience of working with young and vulnerable adults

Many people assume that once they’ve got a criminal record, they’ll never be able to work with children or vulnerable adults. As Danny’s story shows, this is not always the case.      What can I say about my childhood – it wasn’t great to be honest.

Timpson’s gave me the key to unlock my future

Knowing that you’ve got a job to go to on leaving prison can relieve a lot of worry and anxiety. Michaela’s story sets out her experience of securing employment with Timpson’s whilst she was in prison and then upon release.    My name is Michaela and I’m

Lessons in disclosure – just because an employer doesn’t ask the question, you’ll still be seen as dishonest if they find out you’ve got a criminal record

In 2015 I was sentenced to 16 months in prison for fraud against my employer. I was 33 years old when I was convicted and the offence was completely out of character. Up until that point, I’d had a completely clean criminal record and had never had

My top 4 priorities for the next government

People with criminal records – An untapped talent pool that has been ignored for too long There are over 10.5 million people in England & Wales with a criminal record, and many find themselves treated unfairly and unnecessarily held back in life because of their past. Government

Sometimes you have to believe you’re worth it – securing the job of my dreams with a criminal record

I’ll never forget the day I sat across from the smiley faced prison officer who told me “You’ll never get a job with a fraud conviction. You’d have more chance if you’d murdered somebody”. So much for moving on, being rehabilitated – from what this woman was

I am being punished for something I haven’t done – Insurance problems for family members

It was my first time in a court. My husband, Mark was on trial. It was his first offence. He was pleading guilty. We didn’t know how things would go. We had been told to prepare ourselves for a prison sentence. We were not told how to

Getting permission from probation to travel to my brother’s wedding whilst on licence

From the day I received my custodial sentence, I was determined to turn my life around and make sure that I never went back to prison. I kept my head down all the time I was inside and upon release I’d already lined up a job volunteering

There are people in the caring profession that care about people with criminal convictions: Getting a job in a care home

As a youngster growing up my life was extremely chaotic. A mixture of getting in with the wrong crowd and being mentally unwell meant that I picked up a series of convictions – shoplifting, assault, burglary and possession of heroin. However, there reached a point when I