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Women in Prison Conference

Kelly I was asked by Jo-Anne the manager of the Oasis project if on Tuesday 13th September 2011, I would like to attend a conference in London with her in reference to do with women in prison. Questions had been sent to women in prison, to be

Martina Cole – Q&A

Farah Damji Martina Cole – the crime writer who “tells it like it really is” – was born and brought up in Essex. She is the bestselling author of fourteen novels set in London’s gangland, and her most recent three paperbacks have gone straight to No. 1

Life’s Stretches and Turns

Carlotta Allum I was born in Milan, but lived for my formative years in Manchester. My mum is Italian and a doctor although she couldn’t practice in the UK and my dad was a university lecturer. It was quite a liberal upbringing – I’m the youngest of

A New Life

Tracey R My name is Tracey and I was convicted of fraud in November 2011. My sentence, which was a custody possibility sentence was scaled down to 60 hours community service and a one year suspended sentence. After a marriage breakdown, in 2003, and a subsequent residency

A Champion Christmas

Grant Thomas Monday January 23rd 2012. After a harrowing Christmas and new year period, which was precipitated by my latest bout of depression, sleeplessness and worthlessness, I rather despondently picked up the phone to call the First Step Trust. At this juncture my life had not fully

An open letter to Chris Grayling from an ‘old lag’

Dear Mr Grayling, I read with great interest your speech on Tuesday. As someone who has been to prison, and now recruits and trains mentors, I am doing the work you want to encourage. But I find your description of me as an ‘old lag’ offensive and

CRB + ISA = DBS

As many regular readers (and followers of Unlock on Twitter) will already know, on December 1st 2012 the Criminal Records Bureau was merged with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) to become the Disclosure & Barring Service. For some time now, Unlock has been working on detailed guidance on

Convictions and Employment Law

Following a detailed piece of work for Unlock by a volunteer, we’ve recently published our first ever detailed guide on the issue of convictions and employment law. We’re hoping that it will help to inform people about where they stand with employers when it comes to their

Is it spent now?

New guide on ROA changes published Just before the Christmas holidays, we published a brief guide to the planned changes to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, as enacted by the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012. It’s available to download as a PDF

Curtis and Jodie’s story

Curtis and Jodie Curtis and Jodie are making living together work for them, but they feel they’re not getting the right support Jodie: We’ve been together a year and live together at a new place. So far it’s been alright; it gets annoying sometimes when you’re in

Aaron’s story

Aaron Aaron writes about the challenges of resettlement and his hopes for the future My experience since being out of prison is that they just throw you out and just leave you, and they only step in when you mess up. They’ll then say they were there

Lisa’s story

Lisa From living alone at 17, Lisa has just won a YJB prize for her youth work I was 17 when I got my own place. I was with a few mates before that, just sofas and that sort of thing, which was horrible because I never