Monthly summary – April 2019

Welcome to our monthly update for April 2019.

This provides a summary of:

  1. the latest updates to our self-help information site for people with convictions
  2. recent posts to our online magazine, theRecord
  3. discussions on our online forum
  4. other news and developments that might be of interest to people with a criminal record

Have you stumbled across this? You can receive these updates direct to your inbox every month for free by signing up to our mailing list (make sure you choose to receive ‘news for people with convictions’)

Updates to our information site

Here’s a summary of updates that we’ve made recently to theInformationHub. There are links within each update to where you can find more information about the update. There are also links next to many of the updates, which links to threads on our online forum where you can discuss these with other people with convictions.

About criminal records

  • What does an employer see when he checks your criminal record using the DBS update service? – We’ve written a new advice post to clarify what information an employer can see when they use the DBS Update Service to check your criminal record.
  • GDPR and data protection – Guidance for individuals – We’ve updated the guidance to include a section on taking a case to court if you believe that an employer or other organisation has breached your information rights.

Insurance

  • List of insurance brokers – We’ve updated the list to include some amended contact details and also a new broker.

theRecord posts

Below are links to recent posts to our online magazine, theRecord. These are often linked to the practical information that we have, to help give some personal experiences.

Struggles and stigmaIs it too much to expect a life without stigma following a criminal record?“Prior to finding myself on the wrong side of the law, I was a highly skilled, tax-paying member of society. On release from prison in August 2014, I knew life was going to be hard, but I had no idea it would be this hard. The prejudice, stigma and ignorance I kind of expected, however, the lack of structure, support or framework to get skilled people back into work has been the most surprising part of the journey so far ….”

SuccessThanks Unlock for being part of my journey – Volunteering as a helpline advisor “It was early 2018 and I was invited to attend a ‘Disclosure Workshop’ run by an organisation called Unlock. I’d never come across them before but the event looked as though it was going to cover more than just writing a disclosure statement (which it did) ….”

SuccessHome sweet home – successfully appealing a Council’s decision to take a spent conviction into account“My son Roman was aged 22 when he applied for and was accepted onto the housing register. After a year of bidding for a property, he was delighted to be offered a flat. On the day that he went to view it with a member of staff from the Council, he was asked ‘Do you have a criminal record?’ …. “

Discussions on our online forum

Below are links to recent posts to our online forum. If you’d like to join in the discussion but are not currently a forum member, find out how you can join here.

Can an employer say ‘no criminal record will be tolerated?’ – Miguel has raised concerns about employers that have blanket bans on the recruitment of people with a criminal record. We’d like to hear about your experiences with these kind of employers.

Sajid Javid – There’s been some discussion around the Home Secretary’s announcement this month that he is considering overhauling the disclosure rules around minor offences. Add your thoughts to this thread.

Other news and developments

Below are links to other news and developments that might be of interest to people with a criminal record. For more news, check out the news and media section of our main website.

Westminster Hall debate on the disclosure of youth criminal records – Following the publication of the Justice Select Committee’s report on the disclosure of youth criminal records in 2017, there followed a debate on this at Westminster Hall last month. You can read or watch the debate here.

Spring 2019 Newsletter – What we’ve been up to – Our Spring 2019 newsletter provides an update on the news at Unlock in the last 3 months.

University admissions: what’s changed? – Following the decision by UCAS to remove the question about criminal convictions for all university applicants, you can read Rachel Tynan’s blog on the work we’ve been doing in supporting universities to develop fair admissions policies for applicants with previous criminal records.

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Debbie Sadler