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Our mission is to support & advocate for people with criminal records to be able to move on positively in their lives. Find out more

Monthly summary – March 2016

Welcome to our monthly summary for March 2016.

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. 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 Information Hub. There are links within each update to where you can find more information about the update on our Hub. 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 members of the forum.

About criminal records

Work and volunteering

  • Disclosure and Barring Service – We’ve added a link to the latest Applicant Guidance produced by the DBS on their update service. This subscription service allows you to keep your DBS certificates up to date and allows employers to check a certificate online, with your consent.

Travelling Abroad

  • Travelling to Canada – We’ve updated our information on travelling to Canada to reflect the introduction of the Electronic Travel Authorisations (eTA) on 15th March 2016. Any British Citizen now visiting or transiting Canada by air will be required to apply for an eTA prior to travelling.

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.

SuccessesThe Google Effect – You can be forgotten! ‘I’d just started a new relationship when I sat my girlfriend down and disclosed my conviction to her. Out of interest, we decided to check Google to see if we could find out any information about my conviction on there – it was spent so I’d presumed there wouldn’t be anything. Well, imagine my shock and horror when it came up right in front of me……..’

SuccessesLearning to forgive myself!‘In the 1990’s I got a conviction for GBH. I hit a guy and he suffered brain damage; he very nearly died. At first I was told I would be facing a charge of murder. Things were so close. I found it very difficult in prison, beyond any stress level I had encountered before, but as it was my first offence I managed to transfer very quickly to an open prison. That was better, but it wasn’t until my last week inside that I could actually lift my head up and look at other people…..’

SuccessesUSA – here I come! (at the second time of asking) ‘Yesterday I collected my passport from a courier in Central London – the passport that contains a new B1/B2 visa to the United States of America. Nothing remarkable there except that in my (relatively recent) past I have a serious criminal conviction. It’s one for violence that belies my otherwise law-abiding life and indeed, the kind of person I am……’

News Japan recognises ‘right to be forgotten’‘Japan has taken another step towards recognising “the right to be forgotten” of individuals online after a court ordered Google to remove news reports about the arrest of a man who, according to the judge, deserved the chance to rebuild his life “unhindered” by records of his criminal past….’

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.

Got a criminal record? Ever had difficulties finding employment?

Unlock is currently working with the Centre for Entrepreneurs to get a better understanding of the role of entrepreneurship in supporting people with a criminal record. We’ve created a short survey to measure your experience of and interest in entrepreneurship. Read more and complete the survey here.

Briefing for insurers on criminal convictions

At the beginning of the year, we took part in a briefing event for the insurance industry on criminal convictions and insurance. Read the briefing that we prepared here. We’re also in the process of reviewing the questions that insurance companies ask and are working on those examples that we come across that are misleading in the hope that insurers will take a fairer approach towards people with convictions.

Job vacancy – Fundraising/Grants Officer

We’re looking for a part time Fundraising/Grants Officer on an initial 12 month fixed term contract to assist us in generating much needed new income for our work. Download further details of the vacancy here.

Unlock Co-Director wins High Sheriff Award

Christopher Stacey was presented with the High Sheriff Award on 10th March at Country Hall. The Award recognises individuals and organisations across Kent who benefit their communities or demonstrate a particular dedication to improving the lives of others. Read Chris’s comments on what winning the Award means to Unlock.

Unlock welcomes figures showing police are removing people from the sex offenders register

We welcomed figures obtained by the BBC which show that police forces are deciding to remove individuals from the sex offenders register. Read our press release here.


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Photo of Head of Advice, Debbie Sadler
Debbie Sadler
Head of Advice

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