’Irrelevant’ criminal record checks harm ex-offenders’ job hopes

Critics call for overhaul of system, saying many convictions disclosed are at least a decade old and some jobs request unnecessary enhanced checksThe criminal records system is hampering the rehabilitation of ex-offenders, according to new figures. Nearly three quarters of the million or so convictions revealed to employers each year in criminal records checks are more than a decade old. Only around 5,000 – one in 197 – are considered relevant to a person’s job application.

The figures, released after a freedom of information request, have prompted fresh calls for overhaul of the system administered by the Disclosure and Barring Service. It has also led to claims that relying on the checks creates a culture of complacency among employers.

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