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Breaking News: Criminal record disclosure checks ruled 'unlawful'

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Two people who claimed their careers were being blighted by having to disclose their minor criminal convictions to employers have won their case at the High Court.

 

The court ruled the criminal record checks scheme used in England and Wales was "arbitrary" and unlawful.

 

People across the UK are forced to have their criminal record divulged when applying for certain jobs.

 

The Home Office said it would consider whether to appeal against the decision.

 

Lawyers for the pair had told the High Court that people were being unfairly disadvantaged throughout their lives by convictions for minor criminal offences committed years beforehand.

 

 

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-35383037


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One woman, referred to in court as P, was charged with shoplifting a 99p book in 1999 while suffering from a then undiagnosed mental illness. She later failed to attend court, which meant she ended up with two convictions - for which she received a conditional discharge.

 

The woman, 47, who now wishes to work as a teaching assistant and has sought voluntary positions in schools, argued that having to disclose her criminal record, and subsequently her medical history, was disproportionate and breached her right to privacy.

 

Her case was heard alongside that of another claimant, A, who was convicted of two minor thefts in 1981 and 1982 when aged 17 and 18.

 

I had seen previous articles where these checks apparently breached ECHR.


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Two people who claimed their careers were being blighted by having to disclose their minor criminal convictions to employers have won their case at the High Court.

 

The court ruled the criminal record checks scheme used in England and Wales was "arbitrary" and unlawful.

 

Full Article

 

The Home Office said it would consider whether to appeal against the decision.

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2: Take back control of your finances -

Debt Diaries

3: Feel Bullied by Creditors or Debt Collectors?

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4: Staying Calm About Debt

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2: Does your Bank play fair - You can force your Bank to play Fair with you

3: Banking Conduct of Business Regulations - The Hidden Rules

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5: Fair Treatment for Credit Card Holders and Borrowers - COBS

 

 

 

Advice & opinions given by citizenb are personal, are not endorsed by Consumer Action Group or Bank Action Group, and are offered informally, without prejudice & without liability. Your decisions and actions are your own, and should you be in any doubt, you are advised to seek the opinion of a qualified professional.

 

PLEASE DO NOT ASK ME TO GIVE ADVICE BY PM - IF YOU PROVIDE A LINK TO YOUR THREAD THEN I WILL BE HAPPY TO OFFER ADVICE THERE:D

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Don't people have a right to know who they are working with. This woman shoplifted a 99p book, or was that the first time she got caught. Would you leave your handbag in the staff room knowing there was a convicted thief on the staff.

 

99p or not, it says she isn't trustworthy

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Don't people have a right to know who they are working with. This woman shoplifted a 99p book, or was that the first time she got caught. Would you leave your handbag in the staff room knowing there was a convicted thief on the staff.

 

99p or not, it says she isn't trustworthy

 

I don't want to work with the government as they steal peoples money all the time..

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Don't people have a right to know who they are working with. This woman shoplifted a 99p book, or was that the first time she got caught. Would you leave your handbag in the staff room knowing there was a convicted thief on the staff.

 

99p or not, it says she isn't trustworthy

 

How would you as a workmate have the access to this information? Would you be happy to have your personal stuff given out to your work colleagues?

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In my opinion, this is a good outcome. We can't make assumptions about anyones past based on a news report. It may be that they have acted dishonestly before. Equally they may not and this is a single blip on their otherwise clean record.

 

I have seen this many times over on the RLP forum where the OP has no idea why they did it.

 

At the present time, with enhanced DBS checks the onus is on the Chief Constable to decide whether to disclose minor convictions or not and should only disclose where it is relevent to the job being applied for. Somebody may have stolen something once. Should their entire working life be blighted by one act of stupidity. What is the point of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act if the 'hang em' brigade won't give anyone a second chance.

 

Making a bad choice for what ever reason is NOT a sign that a person is inherently untrustworthy.


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Don't people have a right to know who they are working with. This woman shoplifted a 99p book, or was that the first time she got caught. Would you leave your handbag in the staff room knowing there was a convicted thief on the staff.

 

99p or not, it says she isn't trustworthy

 

Absolutely! I mean, life is always black and white.

No need to look at the circumstances (perhaps mental illness as quoted in the report, or shoplifting food for their children, or ......)

Bring back the birch, and transportation to the Antipodes (will Oz and NZ send us their minor offenders?)

 

I think the key point here was rehabilitation. That the release of criminal records needs to be proportionate.

 

Also, (even for a post subject to an eDBS : where perhaps HR if the employer need to know and make a risk assessment), once a decision to employ had been made:

I'd rather work with someone who made a stupid mistake as a rash youth (or had had a mental health problem and sought treatment) & had turned their life around than someone who was still a rash youth and hadn't yet learnt that lesson .....

 

Also, what happens to those 1st time offenders when you remove the hope of rehabilitation from them?

  • Haha 1

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sometimes people get convictions for the strangest of things when they are young, a friend of mine got done for assisting an offender because he witnessed the theft of a car and when asked by a police officer what he was doing said he was just watching to see what happened. It wasnt even a case of refusing to assist a police officer in the execution of his duty and the magistrate gave him an absolute discharge but 40+ years later he would still have to put it on a job app for the type of work he does.

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Minor offences are clear on the standard DBS check so what does he mean by years.

 

iswill sshow on enhanced DBS checks for 10 years but if you require the enhanced check for employment you are either looking to be employed with children, the vulnerable, working in a financial environment or security service.

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Minor offences are clear on the standard DBS check so what does he mean by years.

 

iswill sshow on enhanced DBS checks for 10 years but if you require the enhanced check for employment you are either looking to be employed with children, the vulnerable, working in a financial environment or security service.

 

My understanding is that offences never become 'spent' for the purpose of an eDBS, as these are used for posts exempt from the provisions of the Rehabilitation of Offenders legislation.

 

Where do you get the "show for 10 years" figure from?

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So, it is :

1) 11 years on (not 10)

2) for a single offence only, and

3) No custodial sentence,

then even 'exempt' posts have 'filtering' applied on an eDBS, while some posts remain fully 'exempt'.

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So, it is :

1) 11 years on (not 10)

2) for a single offence only, and

3) No custodial sentence,

then even 'exempt' posts have 'filtering' applied on an eDBS, while some posts remain fully 'exempt'.

 

Yeah way I read it is, eDBS - offences do not get disclosed as long as ;

A) single conviction

B) no custodial sentence

C) is not on exempt/never filtered list

 

Not seen any posts that remain fully exempt from the filtering ?

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Don't people have a right to know who they are working with. This woman shoplifted a 99p book, or was that the first time she got caught. Would you leave your handbag in the staff room knowing there was a convicted thief on the staff.

 

99p or not, it says she isn't trustworthy

 

Whose to say that the other people are more trustworthy? All these checks show is what you've been caught doing. For all you know, you could be working with someone who killed their partner who hasn't been caught yet.

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Yeah way I read it is, eDBS - offences do not get disclosed as long as ;

A) single conviction

B) no custodial sentence

C) is not on exempt/never filtered list

 

Not seen any posts that remain fully exempt from the filtering ?

 

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2013/1198/pdfs/uksi_20131198_en.pdf

 

such as :

"any question asked by or on behalf of any person, in the course of his duties as a person employed in the service of the Crown, the United Kingdom Atomic Energy

Authority or the FCA or the PRA in order to assess, for the purpose of

safeguarding national security, the suitability of the person to whom the question

relates or of any other person for any office or employment where the person

questioned is informed at the time the question is asked that, by virtue of this

Order, spent convictions are to be disclosed for the purpose of safeguarding

national security.”

 

and "any office, employment or occupation specified in paragraph 6, 16, 17, 18, 18A, 31, 32, 35 or 36 of Part II of that Schedule

or paragraph 1 or 8 of Part III of that

Sche Schedule or any other work specified in paragraph 35 or 36 of Part II of that

Schedule;"

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Connif, you would be mad to leave a handbag lying around regardless of whether someone who shoplifted 17 years ago was working there or not! Someone who has never broken the law before but is going through a financially bad time might see that handbag and help themselves.

 

Someone who did something stupid in their youth does not deserve to have their lives marred for the rest of their natural existence.


[sIGPIC][/sIGPIC]

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I have to agree with silverfox1961 about the point of having the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act if the "hang 'em and flog 'em" brigade don't want to know. This is a sound and balanced judgement and long overdue.

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I made a stupid mistake in 1988 & ended up with a conviction and small fine for criminal damage, it showed up on an enhanced DBS in August 2015. It feels like I'm going to be saddled with this for the rest of my life.

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I made a stupid mistake in 1988 & ended up with a conviction and small fine for criminal damage, it showed up on an enhanced DBS in August 2015. It feels like I'm going to be saddled with this for the rest of my life.

 

See above.

 

It will show on an eDBS for 11 years. If you have no further convictions it will then be filtered, so (provided you live that long), it doesn't have to be "the rest of your life".

Additionally:

a) it will be "spent" sooner, and not show on a standard DBS, only on an eDBS and

B) just because it shows on an eDBS doesn't mean an employer won't employ you : make sure their HR dept. knows the circumstances and can make their risk assessment.

 

Hang on!?

Offence in 1988? When was your conviction? Even if at 7 years after (& unlikely to be that long!) it would be 1995 at the latest....

 

eDBS 2015??

 

It should have been "filtered" already, for the majority of posts applied for.

Do you have any other convictions / cautions / reprimands you haven't mentioned?

What post was it you needed an eDBS for?

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Thanks for responding. The conviction was in 1988 for 3 counts of criminal damage. My record has been clear ever since and the job was with the maintenance department of a social landlord. They still gave me the job, but it did cause me a few sleepless nights while they reviewed it.

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This is surely an example of what is wrong with the DBS system as it is. If the disclosure was automatic, I would think there are grounds for complaint. Even if it was considered by the Chief Constable and then released, I would still complain.

I appreciate that the social landlord would need to ensure the staff they employ have nothing of concern as maintenance positions may involve interaction with the public at their homes, however a clean record for 27+ years speaks volumes and the DBS needs updating to reflect that fact.

 

Unbelievable !!!


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The law has always worked on the assumption that once the sentence has been carried out the guilty have paid for their crime against society. It seems to me that there are too many of these unregulated and arbitary dtatabases out there which have a huge impact on the lives of people and can contain information that is no longer legally meant to be held on that individual. In the case of criminal sentences, how are those who commit a crime ever able to integrate back into society? Yes, there are always the 'bad uns' but many, many people were foolish in their youth or even committed a 'crime' that is no longer seen as such. I have seen an employee's record (when I worked in corporate HR) that mentioned he had a criminal record for indecency with another many before the laws vs homosexual intercourse were repealed. This was STILL on his record in the 1990s and was expressed as a box that was ticked with a (please turn to page x for details) anyone reading the front page without doing this would simply assume he was a crook etc. I couldn't help wondering how this might have damaged his career prospects at the company over the years. One wonders how up to date such records actually are, in my experience, they are usually poorly maintained and inaccurate,

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