Monthly summary – June 2018

Welcome to our monthly summary for June 2018.

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 just 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 the updates that we’ve made recently to the 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 link to threads on our online forum where you can discuss these with other people with convictions. 

About criminal records

  • Finding out about your criminal recordSubject Access Requests and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) –  We’ve written an advice post on the effects of the General Data Protection Regulation on Subject Access Requests (SAR) and the pros and cons of applying for a SAR compared with a basic DBS check.
  • Retention and deletion of police cautions and convictions – We’ve updated this page to include some figures we’ve obtained from the ACRO Records Deletion Unit which sets out the number of successful and unsuccessful requests for information to be removed from the Police National Computer.

Information on the internet, online and through search engines like Google

  • The ‘google effect’, internet search results and the right to be forgotten – We’ve updated this page to provide details of an organisation who can, for a fixed fee, make requests on behalf of individuals to online search engines to have links to their name removed.
  • Changing your name – We’ve included a new link on this page to a personal story from an individual who’s been through the process of changing his name together with his top tips.

Links and organisations

  • Important links and organisations –  We’ve updated this page to include the details of organisations around the world who either work with or provide information and advice to people with a criminal record.

Leaving prison

  • We’ve updated our leaving prison landing page to include links to some new guidance from the Department of Works and Pensions on applying for Universal Credit prior to release.

theRecord posts

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

Success – Changing my name has changed my life – “I’m a very lucky person. I come from a loving family which also happens to have a rather unique name; so unique that a song was written about it years ago. There’s not many of us around the world, so put my name into a search engine and sadly me and my 12 year sentence for a sexual offence comes up…..”

Struggles and stigmaIt’s my conviction, not my children’s – the problem with the disqualification by association requirement – “I was recently released from prison having served 2.5 years for a sexual offence. I know there will be people who will be judging me. I can’t blame them for that; I’d have done the same a few years ago  …..”

SuccessVolunteering taught me to work for a cause and not for applause – “Prior to receiving my conviction I had a pretty high profile job which provided me with a fantastic lifestyle and the respect of my family, friends and peers  …..” 

Struggles and stigmaWhen a warning for a playground fight turns into a life sentence“Helen always wanted to be a nurse and was thrilled when she received an offer to study at one of the leading universities in the country. It was going to be hard work but she wasn’t worried, she knew it would be worth it in the end. That dream was shattered when the university revoked the offer. Was it because of her grades? No. She was rejected because she had 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.

Help, advice needed  – Sid received a conviction for a sexual offence in 2010 which is now spent. However, an old friend who’s struggled to come to terms with his conviction is now threatening to tell his family and friends about his conviction. Has anybody got any advice for him?

Wrongful disclosure of personal information  – Robisdave is looking for some advice after discovering that information about him had been found by a member of the public in a police officers workbook.

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.

New paper published: University admissions and criminal records – Lessons learned and next steps

Following the announcement by UCAS that it will be removing the requirements for applicants to disclose relevant unspent convictions, Unlock has published a paper, University admissions and criminal records: Lessons learned and next steps. This paper sets out why the changes being made by UCAS are the right way forward for anybody looking to apply to university with a criminal record.

Welcome aboard!

We’ve just appointed four new trustees to the Unlock board who took up their posts in June. Find out more about the team here.

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Debbie Sadler