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. In response to the government advice at the time, and in particular in advising social distancing and working from home where possible, we temporarily closed the Unlock office on
It’s about a decade since we first started work on developing an online tool to help people work out if they need to tell employers and others about their criminal record. It was around 2009 when we started to receive an increasing number of calls to our helpline from people wanting to know if –
We’re pleased to announce the appointment of four new trustees who join our board this month:  Steve Lorber is solicitor specialising in employment law and workplace data privacy together with advice on charity law and governance; Emma Wilson is a qualified solicitor, currently working as a consultant. She is a volunteer for the charity StoryBook
The Charity Commission has refused more than half of the applications it has received from people with criminal convictions who wish to serve as trustees or senior managers, prompting Unlock to call for a review. In an article published on the Civil Society website, Christopher Stacey, co-director of Unlock, said he was concerned about the
Supreme Court ruled one year ago that disclosure and barring service rules breach rights DBS system continues to unlawfully breach rights of people with multiple minor convictions and childhood cautions. A year after the UK’s highest court found current rules on criminal records checks breach human rights laws, Unlock, Liberty and Just for Kids Law
“Do I need to tell them about my criminal record?” That’s one of the most common questions that our helpline receives when people are applying for work or volunteering roles. But it’s not a question that has a straightforward answer. The starting point is: You only have to disclose if you’re asked” But then it
Criminal records can be a barrier to moving on in life in many ways and we often hear from people who have been rejected from university because of their past convictions, or who are put off applying for fear of rejection. Unlocking students with conviction, a year long project run by Unlock and supported by
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In the 1960s, when Richard was 16, he was found in possession of a small amount of cannabis. He was prosecuted for possession and given a one-year conditional discharge. As a student a few years later, Richard got into trouble again and was convicted of taking an item of food from a warehouse where he
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Together with the charity Transform Justice, Unlock has launched the #FairChecks movement to help push for a fresh start for the criminal records system. Our outdated criminal records regime is holding hundreds of thousands of people back from participating fully in society. Even a minor criminal history can produce lifelong barriers to employment, volunteering, housing
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Today we’ve published our winter 2019/20 newsletter. The newsletter provides an update of the news at Unlock in the last three months. It’s sent to everyone who’s on our public mailing list, and we hope it’s a useful way of keeping up to date with what we’ve been up to. Read: Winter 2019/20 Newsletter  Previous
We’ve published our priorities for government in 2020. We are calling on the government to commit to five priorities to bring about a fresh start for law-abiding people with criminal records. For 20 years Unlock has, as an independent charity, provided a voice and support for people who are facing stigma and obstacles because of
As a charity set up by people with criminal records, Unlock is committed to fair recruitment and the inclusion of people with lived experience of the criminal justice system. Our recruitment policy has helped us do that but we believe every organisation should regularly review their policies and practices to make sure they’re as effective