Monthly summary – October 2019

Welcome to our monthly update for October 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 the information hub. 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.

Work and volunteering

  • Disclosure and Barring Service checks – We’ve set out details of the new reduced cost of all DBS checks as of 1st October 2019.

About criminal record checks

  • The impact of court orders – We’ve written a further article for Inside Time which provides details of how court orders can impact on the time it takes for a conviction to become spent.

Travelling abroad

  • Travelling to the US – Applying for a visa – We’ve updated this page to provide further information about what you should take to your interview at the US Embassy if your police certificate shows ‘No live trace’.

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 fought the big guys and won – getting a newspaper article removed“My conviction was 25 years ago but it had made the press and whilst it wasn’t that much of a big deal at the time, in the age of the internet, I soon found it to be a major problem. I found that I couldn’t apply for the jobs I wanted to because even though my conviction was spent, people could easily look me up on Google and see the press articles …..”

Struggles and stigma“Second chances don’t feel like they exist if you’ve been convicted of a sexual offence”“Back in September 2018 I applied for a job delivering and collecting courtesy cars. There was a box on the application form asking if I had any unspent convictions and then another box underneath asking for further details. This question filled me with dread as I knew that ticking the “Yes” box would always reduce my chances of success …..”

SuccessAn education, a job and a future; look how my life has changed“My childhood sounds like something from a Martina Cole novel. I came from one of those families that you see on the Jeremy Kyle show. Dad left before I was born and my mum was an addict – drink, alcohol, controlling men!! There were many times I’d come home from school to find her passed out either drunk or coming down from a high …..”

Discussions on our online forum

Below are links to recent posts on 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 probation unilaterally disclose a criminal record to an employer – Having recently been offered a job in finance, PH has been told by his probation officer that he needs to disclose his conviction to his employer, even though they’ve not asked him to do so. Has anybody else been put in this situation? What did you do?

Conviction for fraud – McBee is interested to find out whether it’s possible to get work in the health sector with a conviction for fraud. If you’re working in health and social care with a conviction we’d like to hear from you.

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 2020 dates announced for our criminal record disclosure training

We’ve set out new dates for our criminal records disclosure training for practitioners in 2020.

Blog – Government publishes summary of responses to call for evidence on the employment of people with convictions

The government has just published its summary of responses to their Call for Evidence on employment of people with convictions. Our blog looks at some of the promising signs, some areas for improvement and questions the lack of any recommendations from government.

Ten UK universities lead the way by signing the ‘Fair Chance for Students with Convictions’ pledge

Following a 12-month project conducted by Unlock and supported by the UPP Foundation, 10 UK universities have signed up to the pledge making a commitment to offer a fair chance to students with a criminal record. Read more here.

Blog – How can people with criminal records access higher education?

Rachel Tynan, Unlock’s policy and practice lead has written a blog which sets out what we’ve learnt as a result of our work on our Unlocking Students with Conviction project.

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Debbie Sadler