Employers To be Kept In The Dark Over Some Criminal Records

17 April 2019, 08:56

Over 11 million people in the UK have a criminal record.
Over 11 million people in the UK have a criminal record. Picture: PA

Employers could be kept in the dark about the criminal records of some job applicants under a review of rules by the Home Secretary.

Sajid Javid said the Government needs to "look again" at what is disclosed to employers when someone with a criminal record applies for a job.

Currently anyone with two or more convictions automatically has details shared when applying for a DBS check. Potential employers find out details of crimes, even if they were carried out when the person was under 18.

Mr Javid said: “One thing I am looking at, to give you one example, is the disclosure service, youth criminality disclosure, and whether we can look again at the approach that is sometimes taken there.“

"So for example if a young person today has committed two offences, no matter what they are, so could be twice they shoplifted when they were 11 and 12 or something, that record can linger for years and years when they are an adult.“

"They may find they are never getting a proper chance to turn around, I think we need to be sensible and look again at issues like this.”

The criminal records charity Unlock says that in the last 5 years, over 1 million youth criminal records were disclosed on standard or enhanced criminal record checks that related to offences from more than 30 years’ ago.

The charity say that the current system has "multiple, harsh consequences which can have damaging effects on individuals."

In January, the Supreme Court rejected a Government appeal against a human rights ruling won by individuals who said their lives were unfairly haunted by past minor convictions.

The judges found the scheme was "disproportionate" after the Home and Justice secretaries challenged a Court of Appeal judgement in 2017 over the legality of the scheme.