Christopher Stacey

About Christopher Stacey

Christopher manages and develops this website. He is a co-director of Unlock and leads the charity's work to support employers in the fair treatment of people with criminal records. Find out more about Christopher.

Charities must act now to prepare for changes to the rules on criminal records

Almost anyone can run a charity, but there are rules that mean some people with a criminal record are prevented from being able to unless they have clearance from the Charity Commission. With the rules changing this year, it’s important to get to grips with what they mean. There are over 11 million people in […]

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Basic criminal record checks launched today by the DBS

From today, the 17th January 2018, basic criminal record checks can now be obtained directly from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) This is a significant development for both people with criminal records and employers in England & Wales. Basic checks are a type of criminal record check that can be used by employers and […]

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Changes to the recruitment process of a cleaning company whose application form was unclear about spent convictions

We were recently pointed towards a large cleaning company that had a question on its application form for a job cleaning commercial offices which stated: “Criminal Record  o Yes      o No” The question didn’t make it clear that an applicant doesn’t need to disclose any spent convictions when applying for a role covered by the […]

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A recruitment agency with a blanket ban on placing people with unspent convictions

We’ve recently been contacted by an individual who wanted some advice following dismissal from his job because he didn’t disclose his unspent criminal record. The individual explained that on release from prison, over 15 years ago, he’d been told by his probation officer that his conviction would become ‘spent’ (under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act […]

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Lecturer post in a university not eligible for an enhanced DBS check

We’ve recently worked on a case where a university had stated in a job description for a Lecturer in Criminology that: “The successful applicant will have to undergo a DBS check before an appointment can be made.” Although the job description didn’t specify what level of check, the university confirmed that they would be carrying […]

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Recruiting apprentices in the motoring industry? Make sure you ask the right questions

We’ve recently been advising a large motor manufacturer who was asking a misleading question on their online apprenticeship application form. It stated: “Have you any convictions, including both spent and unspent convictions under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974? If yes, please provide details.” We believed that the apprenticeship role being offered would be […]

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Doing enhanced DBS checks? Make sure you get any questions about criminal records right

We were contacted by an individual who was concerned that a question on an employer’s application form in respect of a job requiring an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service checks was misleading as it did not provide any guidance around ‘protected’ cautions and convictions. The question on the application form stated: “Criminal Convictions (see guidance […]

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Providing training courses to apprentices doesn’t make all employees eligible for DBS checks

We’ve recently been involved in a case where a training provider offering vocational and online courses to apprentices was requesting an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for an individual being employed as an account manager. The primary role of the account manager was to liaise with the training company’s current partners and to […]

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University doing ineligible checks for lecturing posts

We’ve recently worked on a case where a university had stated in a job description for a ‘Lecturer in Criminology’ role that: “The successful applicant will have to undergo a DBS check before an appointment can be made.” Unfortunately, it didn’t specify what level of check. When we asked, they said that they’d be carrying […]

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Organisations need to make it clear if they want applicants to disclose

We’ve recently been involved in a case where a student’s union was considering taking disciplinary action against one of its new trustees for failing to disclose their conviction. The trustee concerned had an unspent conviction at the time of their election to the board. After extensive research she had satisfied herself that her offence would […]

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