Midlands university risks carrying out ineligible checks

Lawrence contacted us about a post advertised at a university in the Midlands. The job, Head of Business Programmes, involved working with departments within the university and developing relationships with external partners. Lawrence was surprised then to see that the job description said the post would involve an enhanced DBS check. It wasn’t clear why […]

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A question of fairness: John Lewis Partnership

The John Lewis Partnership (JLP) includes Waitrose and John Lewis. Their online application form asks applicants to indicate whether they have an unspent conviction. The question is compulsory. Selecting ‘Yes’ from the drop-down menu leads to the request for details. The application doesn’t explain why this information is necessary, or what will happen to it. […]

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A question of fairness: Greggs

Greggs’ Fresh Start programme has been running since 2012, and they say they have employed one hundred people with previous convictions and that 32% now hold some form of a Management role. The Fresh Start programme recruits people who are in prison and eligible to work outside on ROTL, and is also open to people […]

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A question of fairness: Spar

Some applications for retail positions in Spar stores ask about criminal records. We contacted Spar to understand why and the Head of HR confirmed:  …we do not ask applicants questions regarding Criminal Records and we do not need to (given the nature of our work) undertake DBS checks. It’s refreshing to see a retailer assess […]

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Guest blog: Bloomsbury Institute becomes the first higher education institute to Ban the Box for staff and students

Bloomsbury Institute London (formerly the London School of Business and Management) has become the first higher education institute in the UK to Ban the Box for students and staff.  Founded in 2002, Bloomsbury Institute is built around an academic community that values diversity, curiosity and hard work and they dedicated to welcoming anyone who has […]

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Asking for self-disclosure during recruitment – is it necessary?

Asking applicants to self-disclose criminal records information is seen by most employers as part and parcel of the standard recruitment process. Whether it’s a tick box on the application form or part of pre-employment checks, asking has been the norm. The advent of the GDPR means employers need be clear about the purpose of self-disclosure […]

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Have you considered how the tick box is impacting young people? Youth-friendly employers should join #BantheBoxUK

Today, Business in the Community is using the third anniversary of the Ban the Box campaign to highlight the challenges of gaining employment for a young person with a criminal conviction. We work closely with BITC on the campaign as part of our work to encourage and support employers to develop fair and inclusive recruitment […]

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Civil service to “ban the box”

Yesterday, we featured news on Unlock’s main website that the Civil Service  have committed to ‘banning the box’ We welcome David Cameron’s commitment to the Ban the Box campaign and changing the recruitment practice of the Civil Service towards people with convictions. The Civil Service is a significant employer and this news is a welcome boost […]

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One year into the Ban the Box campaign; pioneering employers change their practice, but more must follow their lead

Business in the Community’s Ban the Box campaign, which Unlock actively supports, has reached its one year anniversary. It was launched in October 2013 in response to widespread and costly discrimination against people with convictions who are seeking work. So far 24 employers, with a combined UK workforce of over 200,000, have committed to support […]

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