In response to reports of the importance of work opportunities to prison leavers, Helen Berresford, Director of External Engagement comments:
At Nacro, we support over 30,000 vulnerable and disadvantaged people every year, many with complex needs, including those at different stages of contact with the criminal justice system. We have seen first-hand that having a job is essential for people to turn their lives around.
Upon a person’s release from prison back into our local communities, there is an important window of opportunity to help them turn their back on a life of crime and make a fresh start. Government plans to relax temporary release rules are an important step in the right direction, and will enable more people to secure work opportunities while serving their sentence, therefore greatly increasing the likelihood of securing jobs upon release.
Over 11 million people in the UK have a criminal record and people with convictions find it eight times harder to find a job. With significant skills gaps across many sectors and evidence to show the commitment many people with convictions have to their employers, it is time to think differently about the untapped talent that people with convictions can bring to organisations.