This page has details of websites and organisations that we regularly provide links to, broken down into different subject areas. This is part of our approach of signposting to others.

Our other sites

Our main site provides details about Unlock’s broader work, including other services for people with convictions, training for practitioners, support for practitioners and policy work.

Website: www.unlock.org.uk

Our online Disclosure Calculator is an easy-to-use tool that helps you to work out when your convictions become spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Website: www.disclosurecalculator.org.uk

The online forum is a space where people with convictions can provide peer support and advice to one another.

Website: forum.unlock.org.uk

theRecord is an online magazine for and by people with convictions. It shares positive stories and real life experiences of living with a criminal record.

Website: www.the-record.org.uk

Criminal record checks

The Association of Chief Police Offices (ACPO) operate the Criminal Records Office (ACRO). They are responsible for subject access requests for most police forces, as well as police certificates.

Website: www.acro.police.uk
Telephone: 02380 479 920
Email: customer.services@acro.pnn.police.uk

Government body established under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and merges functions previously carried out by the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA).

Website: www.gov.uk/dbs
Telephone: 03000 200 190
Email: customerservices@dbs.gsi.gov.uk

Government body who work to provide a more effective and transparent criminal justice system and have responsibility for the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Website: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice
Telephone: 020 3334 3555
Online contact form: https://contact-moj.dsd.io/

Government body an executive body of the Scottish Government providing basic level checks in England, Wales and Scotland.

Website: www.disclosurescotland.co.uk
Telephone: 03000 2000 40 (or +44 141 427 2284)
Email:  info@disclosurescotland.gsi.gov.uk

Employment

Can assist with claiming benefits and help getting back into employment.

Website: www.gov.uk/contact-jobcentre-plus
Telephone: 0345 604 3719 or Contact your nearest jobcentre plus

The Governments main Welfare to Work Programme will be replaced by the Work and Health Programme in the autumn of 2017. The Work and Health Programme will provide specialised support for those unemployed for over two years and, on a voluntary basis, to those with health conditions or disabilities. The Programme will be run by service providers awarded contracts by the government. The Programme will target people who with specialist support are likely to be able to find work within 12 months. It takes the place of two existing welfare-to-work schemes, the Work Programme and Work Choice, although many jobseekers who would previously have been supported by the Work Programme will now receive support directly through Jobcentre Plus rather than the Work and Health Programme.
A national programme which specifically helps people in prison and those in the community that have recently been sentenced or released from prison. You usually need to be referred onto the programme. For details of your local provider contact NOMS-CFO

Website: co-financing.org/contact_main.php
Telephone: 01925 423 444
Email: CFO-servicedesk@noms.gsi.gov.uk
Address: NOMS CFO, 1100 Daresbury Park, Daresbury, Warrington WA4 4HS

Provides careers advice and information on a wide range of jobs, training course resources and funding.

Website: www.nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk
Telephone: 0800 100 900

An organisation devoted to preventing and resolving employment disputes.

Website: www.acas.org.uk
Helpline online service

Insurance

The ABI provides consumers with general information on insurance and savings products.

Website: www.abi.org.uk
Telephone: 020 7600 3333

BIBA assists individuals to access insurance products through it’s ‘Find a Broker’ service.

Website: www.biba.org.uk
Telephone: 0370 950 1790
Email: enquiries@biba.org.uk

The Chartered Insurance Institute investigates complaints made by individuals against people in the financial services profession.

Website: www.cii.co.uk
Telephone: 020 8989 8464
Email: customer.serv@cii.co.uk

The Financial Ombudsman is the UK’s offical expert in helping individuals to sort out problems with banks, insurance, pensions etc.

Website: www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk
Telephone: 0800 023 4 567 or 0300 123 9 123
Email: complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme is responsible for compensating customers when their insurers have stopped trading or have no assets to pay claims made against them.

Website: www.fscs.org.uk
Telephone: 0800 678 1100 or 020 7741 4100

Housing

Shelter works to alleviate the distress caused by homelessness and bad housing by providing advice, information and advocacy to people in housing need and by campaigning for political change to end the housing crisis.

Website: england.shelter.org.uk
Telephone: Helpline 0808 800 4444

Offer a drop in housing advice service for local homeless people.

Website: www.stgilestrust.org.uk
Telephone: 0808 801 0600
On line form: stgilestrust
Address : 64-68 Camberwell Church Street, London SE5 8JB

Offer housing information, advice and resettlement services.

Website: www.mungos.org
Telephone: 020 3856 6000
Email: info@mungos.org
Address: 3 Thomas More Square, Tower Hill, London E1W 1YW

The national charity for single homeless people, offers housing advice and assists single homeless people find rented accommodation.

Website: www.crisis.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 636 1967
Email: enquiries@crisis.org.uk
Address: 66 Commercial Street, London E1 6LT

A registered housing provider who provides homes and housing related support to people with complex needs.

Website: www.nacro.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 123 1999
Email: helpline@nacro.org.uk
Address: First Floor, 46 Loman Street, London, SE1 0EH

Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRC’s) are private sector suppliers of probation services in England and Wales responsible for supervising low and mediium risk offenders. To find the details of your local CRC visit www.gov.uk.

Website: www.gov.uk

Family members of those in prison

Offer support for anybody with a family member who is in contact with the criminal justice system. They provide advice on all aspects from arrest to preparing for release.

Website: www.offendersfamilieshelpline.org                                                                                Telephone: 0808 808 2003                                                       Email: info@offendersfamilieshelpline.org                                                                                      Address: 15-17 The Broadway, Hatfield, Herts AL9 5HZ

Provide support services to families through all stages of the Criminal Justice System from arrest to resettlement.

Website: www.partnersofprisoners.co.uk
Telephone: 0161 702 1000
Email: mail@partnersofprisoners.co.uk
Address: POPS, 1079 Rochdale Road, Blackley, Manchester M9 8AJ

PACT is a national charity that provides support to prisoners, people with convictions and their families.

Website: www.prisonadvice.org.uk
Telephone: 0808 808 3444                                                                                                               Email: info@prisonadvice.org.uk .                                                                                       Address: 29 Peckham Road, London SE5 8UA

Work with parents whose children are in need, at risk or are in the care system.

Website: www.frg.org.uk
Telephone: 0808 801 0366
Address: 2nd Floor, The Print House, 18 Ashwin Street, London E8 3DL

We have a number of links to searchable websites, specific organisations and useful resources. These are on a page in the information section of this site.

For people with sexual offences

Supporting men and women who have sexually offended to resettle into the community by finding work or managing money. Offer a range of local projects.

Website: www.circles-uk.org.uk/local-projects
Telephone: 0118 950 0068
Address: Abbey House, Abbey Square, Reading, Berkshire RG1 3BE

A child protection charity committed to reducing the risk of children being sexually abused. LFF work with adult male and female sexual abusers, young people with inappropriate sexual behaviours, victims of abuse and other family members.

Their Stop It Now Helpline gives confidential advice and support to prevent child sex abuse.

Website: www.lucyfaithfull.org
Telephone: 0808 1000 900
Email: help@stopitnow.org.uk

Resettlement services

The Clinks Directory is an online database listing hundreds of voluntary and community organisations working with offenders and their families.

Website: www.clinks.org/directory 

Resettlement Service Finder has now been taken over by Nacro see Housing section above.
Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRC’s) are private sector suppliers of probation services in England and Wales responsible for supervising low and mediium risk offenders. To find the details of your local CRC visit www.gov.uk.

Website: www.gov.uk

Links can be found in the information section on prison.

Counselling

Although we’re unable to provide any counselling services we’ve set out below some useful contacts. Some of these are general and some specific to people with convictions.

Provide confidential, non-judgemental emotional support, 24 hours a day for people who are experiencing feelings of distress, including those which could lead to suicide.

Website: www.samaritans.org
Telephone: 116 123
Email: jo@samaritans.org
Address: Freepost RSRB-KKBY-CYJK, PO Box 9090, Stirling FK8 2SA

Offer advice, relationship counselling, sex therapy, workshops, mediation, consultations and support face-to-face, by phone or through their website.

Website: www.relate.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 100 1234

BACP are the largest and broadest body within the sector. It’s work with large and small organisations within the sector ranges from advising schools on how to set up a counselling service, assisting the NHS on service provision, working with voluntary agencies and supporting independent practitioners.

Website: www.bacp.co.uk
Telephone: 01455 883300
Email: bacp@bacp.co.uk

You can use the Counselling Directory to search their network to connect with a professional counsellor or psychotherapist. They only list qualified/registered counsellors and psychotherapists.

Website: www.counselling-directory.org.uk

Jigsaw Therapies is run by Jo Murdoch-Goodwin, who has experience of working in prisons in Kent, setting up services for long-term offenders and substance misusers.

Website: www.jigsawtherapies.co.uk
Telephone: 07729 672003
Email: info@jigsawtherapies.co.uk

Affect is a non-judgemental organisation that supports the families and friends of prisoners regardless of length of sentence or type of offence”.

Website: www.affect.org.uk
Telephone: 0300 3653651
Email: affect01@hotmail.com
Address: c/o 58 Haylands, Portland, Dorset DT5 2LAT

Other organisations

Provide practical up-to-date information on a wide range of topics including benefits and housing, employment rights and discrimination and debt issues. Find your local bureau at www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Website: www.adviceguide.org.uk

The UK’s independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals. Also provide advice on how to protect personal information and how to gain access to official records.

Website: www.ico.org.uk
Telephone: 0303 123 1113

KeyRing has an e-helpline to assist people with learning disabilities or autism who are going through the criminal justice system.

Website: www.keyring.org/cjs/helpline                                                                                            Email: enquiries@keyring.org
Telephone: 020 3119 0960

Set up by the government to provide free and impartial money advice.

Website: www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk
Telephone: 0800 138 7777

Information/advice outside England & Wales

Our information and advice covers England & Wales only. We get lots of queries from people in other places, and much of our information and advice will be helpful. However, we’re unable to give specific advice as the laws and rules are different outside England & Wales, which is why we have details of organisations that cover different places below.

Scotland 

Disclosure Scotland is an executive body of the Scottish Government providing basic, standard and enhanced criminal record checks. They can provide advice on Scottish-related disclosure issues.

Website: www.disclosurescotland.co.uk
Telephone: 03000 2000 40 (or +44 141 427 2284)
Email: info@disclosurescotland.gsi.gov.uk

An organisation which seeks to improve Scotland’s Criminal Justice System.

Website: www.positiveprison.org
Telephone: 0141 353 4312
Email: contact@positiveprison.org

Work with employers to promote safe, effective and sustainable employment for people with criminal records in Scotland.

Website: www.recruitwithconviction.org.uk
Email: info@recruitwithconviction.org.uk

Northern Ireland 

Access NI is a criminal record disclosure service in Northern Ireland.

Website: www.accessni.gov.uk
Telephone: 0300 200 7888
Email: accessni@ani.x.gsi.gov.uk

NIACRO is a charity based in Northern Ireland. Part of its work includes providing advice to people with convictions through a helpline.

Website: www.niacro.co.uk
Telephone: 028 9032 0157
Online Enquiry form: niacro

 

 

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