Monthly summary – February 2018

Welcome to our monthly summary for February 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. 

Work and volunteering

  • Guidance for individuals to changes to the rules on being a trustee or senior manager of a charity with a criminal record – From 1st August, changes to the ‘automatic disqualification’ rules means that there will be more restrictions on who can run a charity. We’ve produced some new guidelines for current and future trustee and senior managers and an online tool to help you work out if you’re affected by the changes.

Travelling abroad

  • Travelling to Asia – This page has been updated to include a section on travelling to Asia if you’re on the Sex Offenders Register and also how the police can issue ‘green notices’ to flag this on your passport.

Insurance

  • Motor insurance with non-motoring convictions – We’ve recently been made aware that Aviva are now asking individuals to disclose both motoring and criminal convictions and we’ve therefore removed them from our list of motor insurers. We have however been able to replace them with Privilege who only ask about motoring, rather than criminal convictions.

About criminal records

  • The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act and the benefits of a spent conviction – We’ve written an article for Inside Times specifically for people in prison, which focuses on the ROA and what it means to have a spent conviction.
  • Criminal record databases – We’ve updated this page to include some information about the impact of the Police National Database (PND) on people with convictions.

Seven stages of a criminal record

  • Help us test some new developments on our information site – We’ve now developed further information in our seven stages of a criminal record series and continue to look for feedback from users.

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.

SuccessI’ve cleared the road for future employees at my company by challenging an ineligible DBS check – “I’ve been working for a year as a driver taking doctors who were working for an ‘out-of-hours’ service to their appointments when, out of the blue, I was asked to go into work early for my next shift as I had to complete a DBS application form. My heart sank as I knew that if my employers did an enhanced DBS check it would disclose my spent conviction and I would almost certainly lose my job …..”

Struggles and stigma – I was told that my historic conviction would stop me working in a prison, but is that really the case? –“I applied for a job as a functional skills tutor working in a privately run prison. The interview went well and later in the day, I received a call to confirm that I had got the job. Great! Or so I thought …..”

Success – Getting help to have links to my name removed from an internet search engine – “Having found myself on the wrong side of the law and losing everything, a link to a newspaper article on an internet search engine was still holding me back some 16 years after I’d received my conviction, even though it was now considered spent  …..”

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.

Let’s list countries that refuse entry to people on the Sex Offenders Register – Harry53 has started a list of countries that are likely to refuse you entry if you’re on the SOR. Have a look at the list and add any countries that you’re aware of.

A shout out for small charities – With all the news in the media recently about Oxfam and Save the Children, Frances has raised some great points about the work of small charities. Let us know what you think.

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.

Criminal Records Bill to receive its second reading in the House of Lords

Lord Ramsbotham’s Private Members Bill on amending the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 will have its second reading in the House of Lords on 23rd February. We’ll be tweeting what happens using the hashtag #CriminalRecordsBill.

Government guidance on homelessness makes it clear that spent convictions should be ignored

In the government’s updated Homeless Code of Practice, it has been made clear that convictions that are spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act should be ignored. Find out more here.

 

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Debbie Sadler