Rehabilitation of offenders
This will depend on the nature of the position and the circumstances and background of your offences.
As an organisation using the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to assess applicants’ suitability for positions of trust, we comply with the DBS Code of Practice of which a copy is available to all applicants upon request. It undertakes to treat all applicants for positions fairly. It also makes sure there is no discrimination against anyone who might be the subject of a disclosure on the basis of a conviction, spent or unspent, or other information revealed.
We are committed to the fair treatment of our staff, potential staff or users of our services, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, responsibilities for dependants, age, physical/mental disability or offending background. We actively promote equality of opportunity for all with the right mix of talent, skills and potential and welcome applications from a wide range of candidates, including those with criminal records. We select all candidates for interview based on their skills, qualifications and experience.
A DBS disclosure is only requested after a thorough risk assessment has indicated that one is both proportionate and relevant to the position concerned. For those positions where a disclosure is required, job adverts and recruitment briefs contain a statement that a disclosure will be requested, and at what level, in the event of the individual being offered the position.
Unless the nature of the position allows us to ask questions about your entire criminal record, we only ask about ‘unspent’ convictions as defined in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Under the Act, anyone who has been convicted of a criminal offence, received a sentence of less than 2.5 years in prison, and has not since re-offended, will become rehabilitated at the end of specified periods relevant to the conviction. For most purposes the law treats these convictions as if they had never happened, i.e. that they are ‘spent’. Under the Exceptions Order a number of occupations, including those which will have access to vulnerable adults, are excluded from the Act.
At interview, or in a separate discussion, we ensure that an open and measured discussion takes place on the subject of any offences or other matter that might be relevant to the position, so that an informed recruitment decision can be made. Failure to reveal information that is directly relevant to the position sought could lead to withdrawal of an offer of employment.