What we do

Unlock is an independent award-winning national charity that provides a voice and support for people who are facing stigma and obstacles because of their criminal record, often long after they have served their sentence.

Click here to find out more about what we do.

Please help us

There are over 11 million people in the UK with a criminal record.

Unlock helps people overcome past difficulties and move forward with hope to make a positive contribution to society.

There are a number of ways to support us. HELP US NOW! Thank you.

Donate Online


Latest news


Our response to Covid-19

Like every person and every organisation, we’re changing how we do things in response to the Covid-19 virus and we’ll keep this page updated with developments.

#FairChecks movement

Do you support a fresh start for our criminal records system? Join the #FairChecks movement to help push for reform.

Government responds to Supreme Court ruling with plans to change criminal records disclosure regime

We intervened in a Supreme Court case which challenged the government's approach to disclosing old and minor criminal records on standard and enhanced checks issued by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). The government has now responded with plans to change it. Find out the latest on this here.

Help us with our policy and campaign work

We're looking for evidence to support key policy issues we're working on, including wiping DBS checks clean of old/minor records, employers that carry out ineligible checks, and the 'google effect'. There are other ways to help too, including writing to your MP and donating to us. See how you can help and get involved.

How we help

We run a number of websites, as well as a helpline, as part of our work...

The country's most comprehensive source of practical self-help information for people with convictions on a wide range of issues that criminal convictions can affect
An online tool that works out when your convictions are spent and so don't need to be disclosed to most employers and insurers
The online magazine for law-abiding people with convictions - share news, views and personal stories about life with a conviction
We give confidential peer advice by telephone, email and other ways. We focus on helping people overcome the effects of their criminal record.
A self-supporting community for law-abiding people with convictions - share information, advice and experience on moving on with a criminal record.
There's a talent pool of over 10.5 million people that you might be overlooking. People with criminal records make good employees. Make sure you're not missing out. Recruit! is a website from Unlock that supports UK employers to recruit people with convictions and helps them to deal with criminal records fairly.
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