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The Reality of ROA


The Reality of ROA

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AB2014
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Square - 23 Sep 18 8:14 AM
east72 - 22 Sep 18 11:34 PM


I did read a bit christopher had posted on twitter about the tendency of a convicted criminal to reoffend.

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0093854818793382?journalCode=cjbb&#.W3P8PNGcLfA.twitter

So really no mater what the offence after 10 years free from crime your basic record should be clean.



I found this to be an interesting read but unsurprising.
I remember watching something on TV a while ago regarding "safety through anonymity" - which is basically the process of protecting ones self by ensuring nothing of note or interest occurs. I am sure that many of us live by this mantra. Indeed, my situation has taken a further step. Many of my neighbours, family and friends are aware of my situation and as a result I feel that I must be cleaner than clean, and go that extra step in ensuring the neighbourhood is well kept and safe (during the 'beast from the east' I was the oly person to clear the street). Although I do not agree with my conviction, I could not imagine how anyone (no matter how guilty) would ever do anything to put them in a position to be dealing with legalities again.

The RofO, however, is just screwed up. There is that clear 10 year 'risk' window, with the chance of re-offending diminishing over time. So, it makes complete sense to me to having a pretty clear scheme:
Standard disclosure: everything relevant disclosed for a period of 5 years
Enhanced disclosure: everything relevant disclosed - no time period. The person requesting must justify the request, such as working with high-risk-groups, state security etc.and must choose what is relevant such as violent crime, crimes against children, drug & alcohol, terrorism etc.  

The problem with any change to the RofO is that is is political. If you look at what is happening with certain offenders in the US - there is absolutely nothing to do with public protection, but political motivation. Sadly, this seems to be the way we are going over here. 

I agree with most of what Square says, but I have to point out that national security stuff involves a check of the Police National Computer, which is fair enough. Ironically, they seem to be much more realistic and I get the impression they are looking more at susceptibility to pressure and blackmail rather than a risk of re-offending. The point about relevance is a good one, as it doesn't currently apply to enhanced DBS checks but does apply to the 'other information' section. The police have statutory guidelines about what they can disclose. It seems reasonable to have that apply to the DBS as well. I'd certainly extend the relevance test to standard DBS checks as well, as they are mainly aimed at a different type of risk. As a hardliner, I see no real need for basic DBS checks at all, but they could certainly have a shorter time limit, such as five years, with standard DBS checks stretching to ten years of any relevant offences and enhanced DBS checks showing all relevant offences. Of course, then someone has to define "relevant" and decide what is relevant, and we're back to politicians again. While I was inside, we had a visit from a shadow junior minister who was something to do with criminal justice. He was very interested in what we were doing and wanted to discuss rehabilitation, until I pointed out that the political agenda was subject to a veto by the editors of the the Daily Mail and the Sun, at which point he blanked me and found someone else to talk to....

=========================================================
Grrr! Aaargh!

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east72 - 22 Sep 18 11:34 PM


I did read a bit christopher had posted on twitter about the tendency of a convicted criminal to reoffend.

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0093854818793382?journalCode=cjbb&#.W3P8PNGcLfA.twitter

So really no mater what the offence after 10 years free from crime your basic record should be clean.



I found this to be an interesting read but unsurprising.
I remember watching something on TV a while ago regarding "safety through anonymity" - which is basically the process of protecting ones self by ensuring nothing of note or interest occurs. I am sure that many of us live by this mantra. Indeed, my situation has taken a further step. Many of my neighbours, family and friends are aware of my situation and as a result I feel that I must be cleaner than clean, and go that extra step in ensuring the neighbourhood is well kept and safe (during the 'beast from the east' I was the oly person to clear the street). Although I do not agree with my conviction, I could not imagine how anyone (no matter how guilty) would ever do anything to put them in a position to be dealing with legalities again.

The RofO, however, is just screwed up. There is that clear 10 year 'risk' window, with the chance of re-offending diminishing over time. So, it makes complete sense to me to having a pretty clear scheme:
Standard disclosure: everything relevant disclosed for a period of 5 years
Enhanced disclosure: everything relevant disclosed - no time period. The person requesting must justify the request, such as working with high-risk-groups, state security etc.and must choose what is relevant such as violent crime, crimes against children, drug & alcohol, terrorism etc.  

The problem with any change to the RofO is that is is political. If you look at what is happening with certain offenders in the US - there is absolutely nothing to do with public protection, but political motivation. Sadly, this seems to be the way we are going over here. 
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I did read a bit christopher had posted on twitter about the tendency of a convicted criminal to reoffend.

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0093854818793382?journalCode=cjbb&#.W3P8PNGcLfA.twitter

So really no mater what the offence after 10 years free from crime your basic record should be clean.



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Show me a man who is safe enough to be let loose in society, and yet too dangerous to work in a bank lest he rob it, or too dangerous to be let near a child lest he rape it.

I cannot conceive of this man in my mind. If you're not safe enough to work in a bank or befriend a child, you're not safe enough to be at large.

When you let someone loose, you do so with the knowledge that they will, by hook or by crook, have in in their power to reoffend. If you deny this, you're kidding yourself.

Parole, criminal records, and registers, are all exercises in self-deception. A kind of ostentatious taking of measures to no overall benefit.



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AB2014 - 21 Aug 18 9:12 AM
east72 - 16 Aug 18 5:26 PM
Diogenese - 6 Mar 18 10:43 PM
When the updated information about the ROA dropped into my mailbox and I'd finished reading it, a thought struck me.

While we're all discussing the virtues or otherwise, of spent and unspent criminal records, the checks that employers are encouraged to carry out and the impact of all this on the person looking for work - after all, this is the main reason for discussions around the ROA. While all this was happening, the actual necessity of the ROA has never been discussed.

Why does the ROA exist? What does it actually do but encourage discrimination through criminal records checks? Apart from the need to protect children from predatory situations, why is a criminal record relevant to any job? What the system is saying is that anyone with a criminal record cannot be trusted and should be treated differently to others - in other words, they are worthy only of some secondary consideration.

If we work on the premise that all ex-offenders were once considered law-abiding, then all potential offenders are already in the workplaces, just waiting to be discovered, tried, convicted and added to the list. Is this really what employers think of their workforce? In reality, an ex-offender has more to prove, more to lose and a greater need for stability and therefore less likely to be a risk to an organisation. Risks are those elements which are unknown and cannot be planned for, a known quantity is not a risk at all.

The ROA perpetrates and supports this myth by its very existence, is it really necessary? Ex-offenders will either become a risk or they won't, the same as any other employee. We're not talking about career criminals, they are not applying for jobs anyway and are often well sorted. financially.

When a sentence is handed out, it is determined by the 'value' of the crime and there are guidelines. However, the ROA uses the length of the sentence as its criteria. I use my own circumstances as an example here to point out that having been sentenced to 8 years for being on the periphery and unaware of any criminal activities, my sentence is never spent. I'm of a certain age with a certain disposition and do not constitute a risk to man nor beast and my chances of falling into the same situation again are nil.

A prolific career criminal with many short sentences under their belt can expect those sentences to be 'spent' at some point in the future. I know I'm generalising but the chances of them re-offending are considerably higher than my own yet there is a huge disparity in the ROA because it does not consider the nature of the crime but only the length of the sentence - why is this?

There are appropriate 'registers' for certain criminal activities - these are based on the nature of the crime. The ROA creates a register that is based on the length of the sentence without regard for the nature of the crime at all - again, why is this?

If I were cynical (which I am) I would suggest that the whole criminal records checking system is simply another way to make money because I cannot get into my head why the length of a sentence should determine how long it is before it becomes 'spent', there is no logic to it. Those whom it affects the most are those who are least likely to re-offend while those who are most likely to re-offend are affected less by the whole system - it's utter madness.

Is anyone aware of something that might explain this? Is my thinking wrong? Is this a question to be asked? Is this the basis for a repeal of ROA as it stands?

PS: I apologise for many of the generalisations I have used here, but it's the only way to illustrate the points.


I can only agree with what you have said here, i'm in a situation similar to yours with little chance of ever getting a spent conviction and having to worry every time you go abroad, take insurance, look for work but like you said and i have said to family and friends after being put in the justice system i am less likely to offend then joe bloggs down the road who doesn't know yet what is to come later if he get caught doing something illegal. 

There is evidence to back up what you are saying - see Christopher Stacey's tweets here. I remember hearing while I was inside that once you have gone 7 years without re-offending, you are statistically less likely to offend than someone who has no police record.
Interesting info there!!
east72
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AB2014 - 21 Aug 18 9:12 AM
east72 - 16 Aug 18 5:26 PM
Diogenese - 6 Mar 18 10:43 PM
When the updated information about the ROA dropped into my mailbox and I'd finished reading it, a thought struck me.

While we're all discussing the virtues or otherwise, of spent and unspent criminal records, the checks that employers are encouraged to carry out and the impact of all this on the person looking for work - after all, this is the main reason for discussions around the ROA. While all this was happening, the actual necessity of the ROA has never been discussed.

Why does the ROA exist? What does it actually do but encourage discrimination through criminal records checks? Apart from the need to protect children from predatory situations, why is a criminal record relevant to any job? What the system is saying is that anyone with a criminal record cannot be trusted and should be treated differently to others - in other words, they are worthy only of some secondary consideration.

If we work on the premise that all ex-offenders were once considered law-abiding, then all potential offenders are already in the workplaces, just waiting to be discovered, tried, convicted and added to the list. Is this really what employers think of their workforce? In reality, an ex-offender has more to prove, more to lose and a greater need for stability and therefore less likely to be a risk to an organisation. Risks are those elements which are unknown and cannot be planned for, a known quantity is not a risk at all.

The ROA perpetrates and supports this myth by its very existence, is it really necessary? Ex-offenders will either become a risk or they won't, the same as any other employee. We're not talking about career criminals, they are not applying for jobs anyway and are often well sorted. financially.

When a sentence is handed out, it is determined by the 'value' of the crime and there are guidelines. However, the ROA uses the length of the sentence as its criteria. I use my own circumstances as an example here to point out that having been sentenced to 8 years for being on the periphery and unaware of any criminal activities, my sentence is never spent. I'm of a certain age with a certain disposition and do not constitute a risk to man nor beast and my chances of falling into the same situation again are nil.

A prolific career criminal with many short sentences under their belt can expect those sentences to be 'spent' at some point in the future. I know I'm generalising but the chances of them re-offending are considerably higher than my own yet there is a huge disparity in the ROA because it does not consider the nature of the crime but only the length of the sentence - why is this?

There are appropriate 'registers' for certain criminal activities - these are based on the nature of the crime. The ROA creates a register that is based on the length of the sentence without regard for the nature of the crime at all - again, why is this?

If I were cynical (which I am) I would suggest that the whole criminal records checking system is simply another way to make money because I cannot get into my head why the length of a sentence should determine how long it is before it becomes 'spent', there is no logic to it. Those whom it affects the most are those who are least likely to re-offend while those who are most likely to re-offend are affected less by the whole system - it's utter madness.

Is anyone aware of something that might explain this? Is my thinking wrong? Is this a question to be asked? Is this the basis for a repeal of ROA as it stands?

PS: I apologise for many of the generalisations I have used here, but it's the only way to illustrate the points.


I can only agree with what you have said here, i'm in a situation similar to yours with little chance of ever getting a spent conviction and having to worry every time you go abroad, take insurance, look for work but like you said and i have said to family and friends after being put in the justice system i am less likely to offend then joe bloggs down the road who doesn't know yet what is to come later if he get caught doing something illegal. 

There is evidence to back up what you are saying - see Christopher Stacey's tweets here. I remember hearing while I was inside that once you have gone 7 years without re-offending, you are statistically less likely to offend than someone who has no police record.

Its just a shame the Government didn't look at it this way, i met with people who had been in and out of prison most of their young lives and will still end up with a spent conviction due to them being small things.. 
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east72 - 16 Aug 18 5:26 PM
Diogenese - 6 Mar 18 10:43 PM
When the updated information about the ROA dropped into my mailbox and I'd finished reading it, a thought struck me.

While we're all discussing the virtues or otherwise, of spent and unspent criminal records, the checks that employers are encouraged to carry out and the impact of all this on the person looking for work - after all, this is the main reason for discussions around the ROA. While all this was happening, the actual necessity of the ROA has never been discussed.

Why does the ROA exist? What does it actually do but encourage discrimination through criminal records checks? Apart from the need to protect children from predatory situations, why is a criminal record relevant to any job? What the system is saying is that anyone with a criminal record cannot be trusted and should be treated differently to others - in other words, they are worthy only of some secondary consideration.

If we work on the premise that all ex-offenders were once considered law-abiding, then all potential offenders are already in the workplaces, just waiting to be discovered, tried, convicted and added to the list. Is this really what employers think of their workforce? In reality, an ex-offender has more to prove, more to lose and a greater need for stability and therefore less likely to be a risk to an organisation. Risks are those elements which are unknown and cannot be planned for, a known quantity is not a risk at all.

The ROA perpetrates and supports this myth by its very existence, is it really necessary? Ex-offenders will either become a risk or they won't, the same as any other employee. We're not talking about career criminals, they are not applying for jobs anyway and are often well sorted. financially.

When a sentence is handed out, it is determined by the 'value' of the crime and there are guidelines. However, the ROA uses the length of the sentence as its criteria. I use my own circumstances as an example here to point out that having been sentenced to 8 years for being on the periphery and unaware of any criminal activities, my sentence is never spent. I'm of a certain age with a certain disposition and do not constitute a risk to man nor beast and my chances of falling into the same situation again are nil.

A prolific career criminal with many short sentences under their belt can expect those sentences to be 'spent' at some point in the future. I know I'm generalising but the chances of them re-offending are considerably higher than my own yet there is a huge disparity in the ROA because it does not consider the nature of the crime but only the length of the sentence - why is this?

There are appropriate 'registers' for certain criminal activities - these are based on the nature of the crime. The ROA creates a register that is based on the length of the sentence without regard for the nature of the crime at all - again, why is this?

If I were cynical (which I am) I would suggest that the whole criminal records checking system is simply another way to make money because I cannot get into my head why the length of a sentence should determine how long it is before it becomes 'spent', there is no logic to it. Those whom it affects the most are those who are least likely to re-offend while those who are most likely to re-offend are affected less by the whole system - it's utter madness.

Is anyone aware of something that might explain this? Is my thinking wrong? Is this a question to be asked? Is this the basis for a repeal of ROA as it stands?

PS: I apologise for many of the generalisations I have used here, but it's the only way to illustrate the points.


I can only agree with what you have said here, i'm in a situation similar to yours with little chance of ever getting a spent conviction and having to worry every time you go abroad, take insurance, look for work but like you said and i have said to family and friends after being put in the justice system i am less likely to offend then joe bloggs down the road who doesn't know yet what is to come later if he get caught doing something illegal. 

There is evidence to back up what you are saying - see Christopher Stacey's tweets here. I remember hearing while I was inside that once you have gone 7 years without re-offending, you are statistically less likely to offend than someone who has no police record.

=========================================================
Grrr! Aaargh!

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Diogenese - 6 Mar 18 10:43 PM
When the updated information about the ROA dropped into my mailbox and I'd finished reading it, a thought struck me.

While we're all discussing the virtues or otherwise, of spent and unspent criminal records, the checks that employers are encouraged to carry out and the impact of all this on the person looking for work - after all, this is the main reason for discussions around the ROA. While all this was happening, the actual necessity of the ROA has never been discussed.

Why does the ROA exist? What does it actually do but encourage discrimination through criminal records checks? Apart from the need to protect children from predatory situations, why is a criminal record relevant to any job? What the system is saying is that anyone with a criminal record cannot be trusted and should be treated differently to others - in other words, they are worthy only of some secondary consideration.

If we work on the premise that all ex-offenders were once considered law-abiding, then all potential offenders are already in the workplaces, just waiting to be discovered, tried, convicted and added to the list. Is this really what employers think of their workforce? In reality, an ex-offender has more to prove, more to lose and a greater need for stability and therefore less likely to be a risk to an organisation. Risks are those elements which are unknown and cannot be planned for, a known quantity is not a risk at all.

The ROA perpetrates and supports this myth by its very existence, is it really necessary? Ex-offenders will either become a risk or they won't, the same as any other employee. We're not talking about career criminals, they are not applying for jobs anyway and are often well sorted. financially.

When a sentence is handed out, it is determined by the 'value' of the crime and there are guidelines. However, the ROA uses the length of the sentence as its criteria. I use my own circumstances as an example here to point out that having been sentenced to 8 years for being on the periphery and unaware of any criminal activities, my sentence is never spent. I'm of a certain age with a certain disposition and do not constitute a risk to man nor beast and my chances of falling into the same situation again are nil.

A prolific career criminal with many short sentences under their belt can expect those sentences to be 'spent' at some point in the future. I know I'm generalising but the chances of them re-offending are considerably higher than my own yet there is a huge disparity in the ROA because it does not consider the nature of the crime but only the length of the sentence - why is this?

There are appropriate 'registers' for certain criminal activities - these are based on the nature of the crime. The ROA creates a register that is based on the length of the sentence without regard for the nature of the crime at all - again, why is this?

If I were cynical (which I am) I would suggest that the whole criminal records checking system is simply another way to make money because I cannot get into my head why the length of a sentence should determine how long it is before it becomes 'spent', there is no logic to it. Those whom it affects the most are those who are least likely to re-offend while those who are most likely to re-offend are affected less by the whole system - it's utter madness.

Is anyone aware of something that might explain this? Is my thinking wrong? Is this a question to be asked? Is this the basis for a repeal of ROA as it stands?

PS: I apologise for many of the generalisations I have used here, but it's the only way to illustrate the points.


I can only agree with what you have said here, i'm in a situation similar to yours with little chance of ever getting a spent conviction and having to worry every time you go abroad, take insurance, look for work but like you said and i have said to family and friends after being put in the justice system i am less likely to offend then joe bloggs down the road who doesn't know yet what is to come later if he get caught doing something illegal. 
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Diogenese - 6 Mar 18 10:43 PM
When the updated information about the ROA dropped into my mailbox and I'd finished reading it, a thought struck me.

While we're all discussing the virtues or otherwise, of spent and unspent criminal records, the checks that employers are encouraged to carry out and the impact of all this on the person looking for work - after all, this is the main reason for discussions around the ROA. While all this was happening, the actual necessity of the ROA has never been discussed.

Why does the ROA exist? What does it actually do but encourage discrimination through criminal records checks? Apart from the need to protect children from predatory situations, why is a criminal record relevant to any job? What the system is saying is that anyone with a criminal record cannot be trusted and should be treated differently to others - in other words, they are worthy only of some secondary consideration.

If we work on the premise that all ex-offenders were once considered law-abiding, then all potential offenders are already in the workplaces, just waiting to be discovered, tried, convicted and added to the list. Is this really what employers think of their workforce? In reality, an ex-offender has more to prove, more to lose and a greater need for stability and therefore less likely to be a risk to an organisation. Risks are those elements which are unknown and cannot be planned for, a known quantity is not a risk at all.

The ROA perpetrates and supports this myth by its very existence, is it really necessary? Ex-offenders will either become a risk or they won't, the same as any other employee. We're not talking about career criminals, they are not applying for jobs anyway and are often well sorted. financially.

When a sentence is handed out, it is determined by the 'value' of the crime and there are guidelines. However, the ROA uses the length of the sentence as its criteria. I use my own circumstances as an example here to point out that having been sentenced to 8 years for being on the periphery and unaware of any criminal activities, my sentence is never spent. I'm of a certain age with a certain disposition and do not constitute a risk to man nor beast and my chances of falling into the same situation again are nil.

A prolific career criminal with many short sentences under their belt can expect those sentences to be 'spent' at some point in the future. I know I'm generalising but the chances of them re-offending are considerably higher than my own yet there is a huge disparity in the ROA because it does not consider the nature of the crime but only the length of the sentence - why is this?

There are appropriate 'registers' for certain criminal activities - these are based on the nature of the crime. The ROA creates a register that is based on the length of the sentence without regard for the nature of the crime at all - again, why is this?

If I were cynical (which I am) I would suggest that the whole criminal records checking system is simply another way to make money because I cannot get into my head why the length of a sentence should determine how long it is before it becomes 'spent', there is no logic to it. Those whom it affects the most are those who are least likely to re-offend while those who are most likely to re-offend are affected less by the whole system - it's utter madness.

Is anyone aware of something that might explain this? Is my thinking wrong? Is this a question to be asked? Is this the basis for a repeal of ROA as it stands?

PS: I apologise for many of the generalisations I have used here, but it's the only way to illustrate the points.


I agree with you here and the OP opening post.

Its a disgrace and the system does not work effectively to extinct the problems people like us are facing.

The senior managers in some companies and employers are dodging tax committing fraud and whatever else so really in context they are no better?

Everyone deserves a second chance and the ROA and all related systems and legislation needs to be re looked into because it is quite frankly unfair.
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Outsourced - 7 Mar 18 4:09 PM
The current ROA simply offers a guarantee that your JSA claim will last for exactly (x) years. BREXIT may offer the need for change when droves of workers are suddenly required and the JSA has plenty of untouched talent. 

I've maintained for a long time that rehabilitation periods need to be reduced or abolished, as they don't really serve much purpose. The data would still be there for the police if they ever need it, so who else needs it? An easier way to do away with it would be to abolish basic DBS checks. If insurers need to see unspent motoring convictions, they can consult the DVLA, as can employers if someone has to drive for them. That system is currently being abused by employers, so it needs to be tightened up, but there are ways this whole mess could be sorted out. There is so much talent going to waste in this country because of prejudice against people with unspent convictions.

=========================================================
Grrr! Aaargh!

GO


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