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Ending supportive discussion?


Ending supportive discussion?

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BenS
BenS
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Group: Forum Members
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I wholeheartedly agree with the above comments.

If certain users don't like people with certain backgrounds/past mistakes/types of convictions being on the same forum as them, then that is entirely their problem. They need to stop being discriminatory and judgemental and should not be frequenting a site for ex-offenders with an attitude that their crime is less "bad" and that others who have committed certain crimes do not deserve to benefit from the forum. It should either be open to all or not exist. The rules of the site state that users must fully accept the fact that they committed their crimes. One of the aspects of rehabilitation and acceptance of your mistakes is that you don't minimise what you have done - e.g. say "OK my crime was bad but it wasn't as bad as people who did X/Y/Z crime". But this case and the new rules are exactly that.

The obvious reason why people with certain convictions perhaps use the forum quite a lot more than others, is because certain types of convictions (you know the ones I mean) make life a LOT more restrictive than for people with any other kind of conviction. For the majority of convictions, you do your time, and then - with the obvious exception of employment issues until the conviction is spent - there are ZERO legal/admin/logistical issues or limitations facing your daily life. On the other hand, for those with the type of conviction I am referring to: you do your time and then you are put on security watchlists alongside terrorists; you are made to go to intensive courses lasting several months (preventing you from getting a stable job); access to your family is monitored and can be restricted; and you face intrusive police vetting requirements whenever you go abroad/get a new car/meet a new partner/have a child/move house/get a new job/get a new passport/get a new bank card/spend more than a few days away from home, etc. etc. Clearly the challenges of people who have made certain types of mistakes are a thousand times greater than for those who have made others. So with all this extra logistical advice needed, it's awful that the people affected by it are not allowed to ostensibly seek such advice.
DeterminedToSucceed
DeterminedToSucceed
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Group: Forum Members
Posts: 22, Visits: 0
Ben - I disagree with you in the sense that what I first learned from this forum was that all ex-offenders, regardless of the crime committed, face common challenges and discrimination. How you respond to those challenges is largely up to the individual. That's not to say that certain offences don't have unique considerations, but if some extra intrusion is part of the payback, then so be it. One of the positive things about this forum used to be that different people with different convictions could learn from one another.

What I do object to, however, is a charity that purports to support ex-offenders actively discriminating and applying their own interpretation on which crimes are quantitatively or qualitatively morally different and - by implication - more remediable than others.

But anyone that thinks that the third sector is anything other than business is deluding themselves. Therefore, reputation management and income generation are more important to them than the people they claim to support, who are simply a means to an end. As I say, it is shameful, particularly when they are dealing with a particularly vulnerable group of people.

Every time they delete useful and harmless discussion, they contribute to making the people affected feel a little less valued and a little more worthless - and push them slightly closer to re-offending. If they can sleep easy with that, fine, but I wouldn't be able to.
DeterminedToSucceed
DeterminedToSucceed
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Group: Forum Members
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For an anti-discrimination organisation to itself discriminate is, in my opinion, shameful.
Mirrorman
Mirrorman
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Group: Forum Members
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Once again I return here to Unlock to find actual helpful advice has been eradicated from the forum. I have to ask again why the discussion of certain topics is not allowed. These forums are lifeless and the only topics that will bring a spark here are ones that end up being deleted.

These topics were actually helpful, providing real life advice for ex-offenders. Something will need to change with this policy before the forums wither up and die completely.

Everyone on here has their own problems but we all have one thing in common – we want to move on and try to live happy normal offense free lives, curbing discussion is not helping that.

What do other posters think?
Debbie Sadler
Debbie Sadler
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Group: Forum Members
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Hi All

The decision made by Unlock back in 2013 to stop discussions around sexual offences was never an easy one for us to take (the rationale behind this can be found at -
https://www.unlock.org.uk/support-for-people-with-convictions/online-forum/changes-to-the-forum-2013/

However, we recognise that there needs to be a way for us to meet the needs of specific groups of people whose needs are not currently met via our existing services. One of our key aims this year therefore has been to consider ways of redesigning the Forum to meet some of these needs.

We have taken on board feedback from the survey undertaken in the summer as the basis for some of the changes we will be making. Reintroducing discussions around all types of offences will be one of the major developments and we are hopeful that a 'new look' forum will be active before the end of the year.

We appreciate your frustrations but until the redesigned forum is introduced, we would be grateful if the existing forum rules could be adhered to.


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