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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 – May 2018

Welcome to our monthly summary for May 2018.

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 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 theInformationHub. 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 link to threads on our online forum where you can discuss these with other people with convictions. 

Work and volunteering

  • Self-disclosure statements/disclosure letters – We’ve developed some new self-disclosure examples which can be used to help individuals write their own. We’re also looking for people to share their own statements/letters, particularly if they resulted in a successful job offer.
  • Employment after release – We’ve written an article for InsideTime, specifically for people in prison, which focuses on finding work after being released.

About criminal records

  • Police records – Subject access requests – We’ve updated this page to reflect the changes that the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) have had on subject access requests, namely that they will now be free of charge.


  • If you’ve got an unspent conviction you might want to think twice before using a comparison website for insurance – We all know how popular comparison websites are but, we’ve written an advice post setting out some of the problems you may encounter in using them if you’ve got an unspent conviction.

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.

Success – I’m still struggling to get over my past but there’s help to improve my future – changes to filtering legislation – “I didn’t get into trouble with the law during my ‘youth’. However, aged 14 I was arrested and received a caution. Thinking back, it was around this time that I started binge drinking which began to cause me some problems …..”

Struggles and stigmaResponding to rejection – my email to a recruitment agency after being told I was unsuitable – “Like many of you who are reading this article, I’ve just had one of those ‘thanks but no thanks’ incidents following an interview arranged by a recruitment agency. I’ve had these types of responses before and felt upset, angry and deflated but this time, rather than just accept the contents, I thought it was important to respond …..”

SuccessThe differing attitudes of employers towards criminal records makes securing a job even harder – “My criminal record didn’t look great. Nothing more than shoplifting convictions but there were a lot of them. I imagine I’d be referred to as a serial offender. I won’t go into the details of why I received so many, my story is probably similar to a lot of other peoples who have issues with drugs or alcohol. Stealing became my only way of maintaining my habit …..” 

Discussions on our online forum

Below are links to recent posts to 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.

Applying for a USA tourist visa  – There’s a lot of interesting information and advice on this thread which could be useful if you’re thinking of travelling to the US this summer.

Post Brexit – impact on travelling to Europe – Understandably, there’s still a lot of anxiety about travelling to Europe post-Brexit. Let us have your thoughts.

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 research finds thousands of people every year struggle because of youth criminal records from decades ago

We’ve just published some research on the impact of criminal records acquired in childhood and early adulthood. Download the report, A life sentence for young people.

Help us wipe DBS checks clean of old and minor criminal records – we need your help to challenge the government in the Supreme Court

We’ve launched a CrowdJustice appeal to help raise money to pay for our legal costs in intervening in the Supreme Court next month.

Unlock comment on Ministry of Justice’s Education and Employment Strategy

As the Ministry of Justice reveal their Education and Employment Strategy, read Unlock’s co-director, Christopher Stacey’s comments.


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

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