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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 update – October 2015

Welcome to our monthly update for October 2015.

This update 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

Information updates

Here’s a summary of the updates that we’ve made recently to our information site. There are links to where you can find more information about each update. There are also links next to many of the updates to threads on our online forum where you can discuss these with other people that have a criminal record.

About criminal records

  • Basic Disclosures – We’ve provided an example of what a basic disclosure certificate looks like where an individual has convictions on record which are spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.
  • Police records – If you’re unsure of the details of your criminal record, we often advise individuals to apply for a Subject Access Request via ACRO. We’ve added an image of the SAR application form and the results, which demonstrates the amount of information shown and the importance of the changes in the law in March 2015 making enforced subject access a criminal offence.


  • Information contained on UK passports – There’s a lot of confusion about what’s disclosed when biometric passports are scanned. This new information aims to clarify how details of a criminal record might be revealed. For further information see here.
  • Applying for leave to remain – This new information is designed to help individuals applying for leave to remain understand how their criminal record might affect them and provides links to Government guidelines setting out how applications disclosing criminal convictions may be treated.


  • List of insurance brokers – We’ve added a further company to our List of Insurance Brokers who are able to assist people with unspent convictions access insurance products. The latest downloadable list can be found here.

Self Employment

  • We’ve updated our information on the New Enterprise Allowance, a scheme which offers business advice, funding support and business mentoring to anybody who is out of work and claiming certain qualifying benefits. Find out more about the scheme here.

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.

Struggles and stigmaBuilding our dreams‘I’ve not had a great past in terms of childhood experiences, having been brought up in a family with strict values. I always felt that my choices in life were limited. Then in my late teens, something happened which would further blight my life. I landed myself a criminal conviction ….’

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 guidance for insurers on (not) using enforced subject access to get details of criminal records

The Association of British Insurers have produced guidance for insurers which clarifies the position for insurers after section 56 of the Data Protection Act 1998 came info force earlier this year. This guidance should help insurers make sure that they operate fairer practices when dealing with individuals that have criminal records. Find out more here.

New employer guide to creating a fair recruitment process, marking two years of Ban the Box

Its been two years since the launch of the Ban the Box campaign and Business in the Community (BITC), who lead the campaign, have marked the anniversary by launching a free step-by-step guide to creating a fair recruitment process in dealing with criminal records. The anniversary gives fresh impetus to the campaign which we’re promoting as part of our project to challenge employment discrimination. Read more about the guide and Unlocks’ project here

Autumn 2015 Newsletter

We’ve published an update of the news at Unlock in the last three months. Download a copy here.

Examples of people we’ve helped

We’ve published some examples of how we’ve helped people over the last three months. We think these examples show how people with convictions are able to overcome some of the barriers that have been put in their way due to their criminal record.




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

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