Criminal Convictions

In England and Wales, the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act ensures that most job applicants will not need to declare spent convictions, cautions, reprimands or final warnings (although there are some exemptions, depending on the type of role you’re applying for). This means that, once your conviction has been spent, employers can’t discriminate against you because of your past or use your conviction as a reason for not employing you.

Support at Aston

Listening Ear is a pastoral support drop-in service based on campus. It offers the following support for students, regardless of religious affiliation: confidential, non-judgemental listening; help in times of distress; signposting to specialist sources of help (including faith contacts if you wish).

There are a variety of mentoring schemes available at Aston which are designed to enable students, alumni and professionals alike to have the opportunity to support the Aston student community, develop skills, expand networks and share experiences. You will have the opportunity to engage in mentoring activities at every stage of your learning journey.

Useful resources

The following organisations and resources can offer further support and advice:

TARGETjobs: equality and diversity issues, and your graduate job hunt - You can find advice on a range of key equality and diversity issues in this article. They look at your rights during the recruitment process, disclosing information to your employers and more. 

TARGETjobs: people with a criminal record - In this article, TARGETjobs share advice on disclosing a criminal record in the UK.

Business in the Community: employers who have banned the box - Business in the Community's Ban the Box campaign calls on employers to create fair opportunities for ex-offenders to apply for jobs. Employers can do this by removing the criminal convictions tick box from application forms, and asking about offences later in the recruitment process.

Clean Sheet - This charity helps people who have been in prison find work across the UK. Clean Sheet employers will actively consider Clean Sheet members for work, training or volunteering.

Inclusive Top 50 UK Employers - This is a definitive list of UK-based organisations that promote inclusion across all protected characteristics, throughout each level of employment within their organisation.

Nacro - They change lives by designing and delivering services to equip people with skills, advice and support to move on. They provide practical support for a range of areas, including employment rights and representation, disclosing criminal records and finding employment.

Totaljobs Guides - If you’ve got questions about work equality, take a look at these expert guides from Totaljobs which cover topics such as how to ask for a pay rise, gender transitioning in the workplace, what it’s like to be deaf in the workplace and more. 

Unlock - A charity that provides a voice and support for those with a criminal record –  it also helps ex-offenders make a positive contribution to society. They publish information about finding ‘friendly employers’ and how some occupations and professions deal with people who have criminal records.

VERCIDA - The UK’s largest diversity and inclusion-focused career hub for recruiters and jobseekers. As well as promoting jobs with inclusive employers, they provide resources for a range of applicants including, those with disabilities, those aged over 50, LGBTQ+ applicants, religious applicants and more.