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Neo Matrix
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Deb S - 22 Aug 18 8:32 AM
Hi Neo Matrix

Thanks for starting this thread - it's great to hear about the issues that are really important to our supporters. A lot of the stuff that's been mentioned is part of our ongoing policy work but it's always good to be able to put individuals personal stories to government demonstrating the real impact that a criminal record has. 

Feel free to share your own experiences either on theForum or by emailing policy@unlock.org.uk.

As you may be aware, Lord Ramsbotham is Unlock's President so feel free to write to him c/o our address - Maidstone Community Support Centre, 39-48 Marsham Street, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1HH. 

Thanks again.

Debs

Hi Deborah 

i hope you are well 

thanks for replying to my post  and updating me with the information you have provided.

i will look to write to the president and express my concerns.

if any of us on this forum can come along and support at any court cases or any other related conferences that could potentially change the legal rights and laws for us ex offenders then please do let us know. 

Thanks again 
Neo
Neo Matrix
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BenS - 22 Aug 18 8:31 AM
GaryTS - 22 Aug 18 12:11 AM

Is this Lord Ramsbotham still around do you know? and if so is there a way to contact him?

Here he is: https://www.parliament.uk/biographies/lords/lord-ramsbotham/3744

Hi Ben 

thanks for for replying to my post I will take a look at the link.
cheers
Neo
Debbie Sadler
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Hi Neo Matrix

Thanks for starting this thread - it's great to hear about the issues that are really important to our supporters. A lot of the stuff that's been mentioned is part of our ongoing policy work but it's always good to be able to put individuals personal stories to government demonstrating the real impact that a criminal record has. 

Feel free to share your own experiences either on theForum or by emailing policy@unlock.org.uk.

As you may be aware, Lord Ramsbotham is Unlock's President so feel free to write to him c/o our address - Maidstone Community Support Centre, 39-48 Marsham Street, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1HH. 

Thanks again.

Debs

Need Unlocks advice? Visit our self-help information site or contact our helpline
BenS
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GaryTS - 22 Aug 18 12:11 AM

Is this Lord Ramsbotham still around do you know? and if so is there a way to contact him?

Here he is: https://www.parliament.uk/biographies/lords/lord-ramsbotham/3744
Neo Matrix
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AB2014 - 21 Aug 18 9:53 AM
GaryTS - 17 Aug 18 11:35 PM
Thorswrath - 17 Aug 18 10:54 PM
I have three words .... ban the box! in respect of unspent convictions at application stage and then give the applicant the opportunity to have an interview based on their achievements and potential. I still think asking about unspent convictions is important but should be left to the interview stage after the applicant has been assessed. More often than not, the conviction is unrelated to the type of work being applied for. The jobs in society that require advanced security checks already have to do full DBS and background checks anyway, so banning the box wont affect those kind of roles. It's more the manual low level type of work or entry level office work that could help someone put their life back on the right track, but the recruiting agencies are just overly risk averse. In my opinion, a person with an unspent conviction who is willing to prove themselves and has already learned their lesson the hard way could actually be a valuable asset to a company rather than a hinderance, as they may be less likely to take unnecessary risks.

Hi Thors

Thanks for your input.

I must say i completely agree with you on this matter and feel it should be a nation wide thing that all suitable employers ban the box. 

Everything you have said and the points you have made are 100% true.

Lets all work together and spread the word!

Neo

I think I agree with just about everything on this thread, although that's not unusual. I agree with banning the box, but in some cases it just moves the discrimination to the end of the recruitment process rather than the middle, but still allows employers to look socially progressive. Corporate social responsibility is allegedly important these days, although more so to us than to companies. I've always maintained that something needs to be done about rehabilitation periods and basic DBS checks. Lord Ramsbotham tried twice to get something done, but his bill ran out of time twice, thanks to the Government not wanting to do anything about it. I personally wasn't so worked up about enhanced DBS checks, until I saw this article in the Guardian. In any case, it's all very well having statutory guidelines about what and when to disclose, but it's still down to personal interpretation and varies between the different police forces. Is that down to chief police officers or policing and crime commissioners?

Regarding foreign travel, the problem is that other countries want to know if you have ever been arrested/cautioned/convicted and aren't subject to ROA. If the Government/police were seen as being complicit in hiding information, then they could be seen under foreign countries' laws as being involved in immigration fraud, so there is no way they are going to change that system, unfortunately.

In terms of changing employers' attitudes to disclosure certificates, they will always think that if the information is there, the government must want them to take it into account. Meanwhile, the government just hides behind their own rules and says that it is up to the employers to decide what they take into account. Let's hope the Supreme Court judgement is helpful....

Hi AB

Thanks for your comments. I like yourself agree when you mention about banning the box, it is simply just a prolonging tactic to be seen to be embracing the concept. I 100% agree with you in regards to the rehabilitation periods and basic DBS check. Is this Lord Ramsbotham still around do you know? and if so is there a way to contact him?  I kind of think that they need to come up with a solution in regards to the standard DBS and the fact that convictions are spent and this should be looked upon in a more positive light rather than a complete disregard for people who are trying their upmost best to change their lives around.

As you mention we can only hope that the supreme court judgement is something that we can all benefit from.

all the best.
AB2014
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GaryTS - 17 Aug 18 11:35 PM
Thorswrath - 17 Aug 18 10:54 PM
I have three words .... ban the box! in respect of unspent convictions at application stage and then give the applicant the opportunity to have an interview based on their achievements and potential. I still think asking about unspent convictions is important but should be left to the interview stage after the applicant has been assessed. More often than not, the conviction is unrelated to the type of work being applied for. The jobs in society that require advanced security checks already have to do full DBS and background checks anyway, so banning the box wont affect those kind of roles. It's more the manual low level type of work or entry level office work that could help someone put their life back on the right track, but the recruiting agencies are just overly risk averse. In my opinion, a person with an unspent conviction who is willing to prove themselves and has already learned their lesson the hard way could actually be a valuable asset to a company rather than a hinderance, as they may be less likely to take unnecessary risks.

Hi Thors

Thanks for your input.

I must say i completely agree with you on this matter and feel it should be a nation wide thing that all suitable employers ban the box. 

Everything you have said and the points you have made are 100% true.

Lets all work together and spread the word!

Neo

I think I agree with just about everything on this thread, although that's not unusual. I agree with banning the box, but in some cases it just moves the discrimination to the end of the recruitment process rather than the middle, but still allows employers to look socially progressive. Corporate social responsibility is allegedly important these days, although more so to us than to companies. I've always maintained that something needs to be done about rehabilitation periods and basic DBS checks. Lord Ramsbotham tried twice to get something done, but his bill ran out of time twice, thanks to the Government not wanting to do anything about it. I personally wasn't so worked up about enhanced DBS checks, until I saw this article in the Guardian. In any case, it's all very well having statutory guidelines about what and when to disclose, but it's still down to personal interpretation and varies between the different police forces. Is that down to chief police officers or policing and crime commissioners?

Regarding foreign travel, the problem is that other countries want to know if you have ever been arrested/cautioned/convicted and aren't subject to ROA. If the Government/police were seen as being complicit in hiding information, then they could be seen under foreign countries' laws as being involved in immigration fraud, so there is no way they are going to change that system, unfortunately.

In terms of changing employers' attitudes to disclosure certificates, they will always think that if the information is there, the government must want them to take it into account. Meanwhile, the government just hides behind their own rules and says that it is up to the employers to decide what they take into account. Let's hope the Supreme Court judgement is helpful....
Neo Matrix
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Thorswrath - 17 Aug 18 10:54 PM
I have three words .... ban the box! in respect of unspent convictions at application stage and then give the applicant the opportunity to have an interview based on their achievements and potential. I still think asking about unspent convictions is important but should be left to the interview stage after the applicant has been assessed. More often than not, the conviction is unrelated to the type of work being applied for. The jobs in society that require advanced security checks already have to do full DBS and background checks anyway, so banning the box wont affect those kind of roles. It's more the manual low level type of work or entry level office work that could help someone put their life back on the right track, but the recruiting agencies are just overly risk averse. In my opinion, a person with an unspent conviction who is willing to prove themselves and has already learned their lesson the hard way could actually be a valuable asset to a company rather than a hinderance, as they may be less likely to take unnecessary risks.

Hi Thors

Thanks for your input.

I must say i completely agree with you on this matter and feel it should be a nation wide thing that all suitable employers ban the box. 

Everything you have said and the points you have made are 100% true.

Lets all work together and spread the word!

Neo
Thorswrath
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I have three words .... ban the box! in respect of unspent convictions at application stage and then give the applicant the opportunity to have an interview based on their achievements and potential. I still think asking about unspent convictions is important but should be left to the interview stage after the applicant has been assessed. More often than not, the conviction is unrelated to the type of work being applied for. The jobs in society that require advanced security checks already have to do full DBS and background checks anyway, so banning the box wont affect those kind of roles. It's more the manual low level type of work or entry level office work that could help someone put their life back on the right track, but the recruiting agencies are just overly risk averse. In my opinion, a person with an unspent conviction who is willing to prove themselves and has already learned their lesson the hard way could actually be a valuable asset to a company rather than a hinderance, as they may be less likely to take unnecessary risks.

Neo Matrix
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Chris/Debbie

Can you make note of the issues raised on this thread please to bring up in the future.

anything we can do to support as members please let us know.

thanks

Neo
Neo Matrix
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BenS - 17 Aug 18 8:32 AM
Hi,

I would like to see the total removal of the part in enhanced DBS checks where the chief constable can add information "that they deem relevant". This system is abused - in reality, they simply add all information, including neighbourhood gossip, false accusations from jilted former partners, false arrests, and acquittals. We saw a Supreme Court case recently where a teacher, who was the victim of a false rape allegation, failed in his attempt to have the information about that case removed from his enhanced DBS check, rendering him unemployable despite him never having committed a crime.

This information is also damaging because employers will not, as they say, "consider the individual circumstances". If an ROA-exempt employer sees any information on a standard/enhanced DBS check, 99% of the time the application will go in the bin. Example: a woman was at a checkout and something accidentally dropped into her handbag without her even noticing. She was given a caution for shoplifting. Decades later, she still can't get a job teaching. This shows that employers do not "consider the individual circumstances" - no one would agree that something so minor, not even intentional. would make you a danger to vulnerable people - your application is simply chucked in the bin without the circumstances of the conviction being considered.

I would also like to see the police certificates issued by the UK police to foreign authorities for residency or visa purposes, be the equivalent of a basic DBS check for people who have not offended for a certain period (10 years maybe). Currently they are the equivalent of an enhanced DBS certificate, detailing every tiny thing since you were born. You're not applying for a sensitive job - you're applying for entry to another country to live peacefully, and if you haven't offended in a long time then it is irrelevant and damaging to have such a detailed police certificate. After a long time of not doing anything wrong, you deserve a fresh start.

Hi Ben

Thanks for your feedback.

I totally agree with you mate. This issue needs to be brought up more and something ultimately needs to be done about it.
They bang on about reformation etc but there is such a lack of support its unreal, how on earth do they expect people to move on when the government and legislation surrounding the issue is flawed?

I hope this can be looked into sooner rather than later!


GO


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