Monthly summary – October 2017

Welcome to our monthly summary for October 2017.

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. 

Criminal record checks for employment

  • Eligibility for standard and enhanced checks – We’ve updated this page to include a section setting out the definition of regulated activity for children and vulnerable adults.

Work and volunteering

  • Becoming a trustee of a charity – Following changes to The Charities (Protection and Social Investment) Act 2016, due to be introduced in early 2018, we’re keen to hear from anybody who has personal experience of applying to become a trustee. Find out how you can help us here.
  • Childcare Disqualification Requirements – Deciding whether or not you fall under the Childcare Disqualification Requirements can be confusing. We’ve updated this page to include some practical examples of who may be affected.

Other areas of life

  • Shotgun and firearms licence – If you’ve received a custodial sentence then it’s likely that you’ll be prohibited from owning a firearm for a certain period of time. However, if you’re applying for a licence and live with somebody who has a criminal record, this may also affect your chances of getting a shotgun or firearms licence.

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 – A life sentence can sometimes be just the beginning of a new life ‘I was convicted of murder in 1990 and served a 10 year sentence. Instead of getting bogged down in prison with petty activities, I used my time in a constructive manner and enrolled on many courses as well as applying to do an Open University degree …..’

Struggles and stigma “You’re fired” – Losing my job after my spent conviction came to light due to my own honesty‘When we consider what is needed to help those with criminal convictions move forward in their lives, time and time again we hear that the most important factor is having a job. There are many advantages to the individual, not only the obvious financial stability but also helping the individual to feel a sense of belonging, taking responsibility, gaining a sense of purpose and the creation of social relationships  …..’

Success – Trying to forget my criminal record almost cost me a job‘I received my conviction in 2007 following an argument with my partner. At the time I had two small children and therefore only worked part time for the NHS. This was the only time I’d ever been in trouble with the law …..’

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.

Becoming a counsellor/therapist – Hope4eva is considering training to become a counsellor and a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy. He wants to know if anybody has any experience of going into this line of work with a criminal record. Can you help?

Post Brexit impact on travelling to Europe – One Time Crim has added a link to a press release from the European Commission on the possible adoption of an entry/exit visa system. This issue will continue to concern anybody who has a criminal record so have a read of the press release and let us have your thoughts.

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.

Autumn 2017 Newsletter – What we’ve been up to

We’ve published an update of the news at Unlock in the last 3 months. Download a copy of it here.

Unlock speaks at High Sheriff charity event

Julie Harmsworth, Unlock’s co-director spoke at the ‘Causes that Matter’ event hosted by the High Sheriff of Kent, George Jessel. You can read more about the event here.

Criminal records regime is failing children and young people and anchoring them to their past for decades

Christopher Stacey, who gave evidence to the Justice Committee, responded to their report into the disclosure of youth criminal records. In addition, The Independent newspaper published a letter from Chris on the same subject ‘Forcing adults to admit to petty crime from their teen years is unfair and counter-productive’.

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Debbie Sadler