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Are the changes to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act enough?

People with criminal convictions are not the most popular group in society. However, once somebody has served their sentence and doesn’t re-offend, it’s in everybody’s interests to enable them to move on positively with their lives and contribute actively to society. And we’re not talking about a

Scottish Government consult on the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

This week, the Scottish Government has (finally) launched its consultation on the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. England & Wales has passed its own reforms on this (although they’re still waiting to come into force), but these will not change the situation in Scotland. The Scottish Government

Do the police believe in rehabilitation?

After a visit from the police, Russell felt like the police didn’t believe in rehabilitation, as they took no account of how he’d moved forwards with his life over the 8 years since his last offence. I have been on the Sex Offenders Register (SOR) for five

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

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

Knowledge and enthusiasm enabled me to appeal my court order

After learning that his indefinite SOPO was extending the time he spent on the Sex Offenders Register and keeping his conviction unspent, Danny knew that the only way to improve his chances of getting back into work was to have it discharged. Approximately eight years ago I

Organisations can’t be diverse or inclusive until HR professionals recognise the value of people with convictions

Despite having worked as a nurse for many years, Janice feels that HR departments are more interested in her conviction from 20 years ago than her abilities as a nurse. I’ve been a nurse for over 11 years and have worked in the same hospital department for

Google, ‘Do the right thing’ – don’t take my spent conviction into account when making recruitment decisions

In 2019 Google adopted the motto “do the right thing” to encourage it’s employees to be civil to one another and not break the law. However, as George discovered, this didn’t stop them from flouting the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act and taking his spent conviction into account

Gone but not forgotten – Understanding the meaning of a spent conviction

A spent conviction presents real opportunities for people to move on with their lives following a conviction but Amy wants more to be done so that people with a criminal record can truly put their past mistakes behind them. At the beginning of May I reached another

“Acceptance was the answer to my problems” – Getting into university with an unspent conviction

Despite education being widely recognised as a key factor in successful rehabilitation, having to disclose a conviction will often mean that people with convictions are discouraged from applying. But, refusal from one university didn’t stop Henry from following his dream to study for a Masters. I’m so

Isn’t 45 years long enough to have to disclose a criminal record?

Laura has been able to work very successfully as a librarian despite her criminal record. However, she feels strongly that the current disclosure laws need to be changed so that there comes a time when people with very old convictions no longer have to reveal them to

Teaching is facing a recruitment crisis; how can it be turned around?

Several years ago, The Guardian published an article about the crisis in the recruitment of teachers. Since then, things haven’t got much better however as an ex-teacher with a criminal record, I’ve got my own ideas on how to improve the recruitment problem. Back in 2017, it