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Guidance on the recruitment of ex-offenders

As an organisation using the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) to assess applicants’ suitability for positions of trust, Bracknell Forest Council complies fully with the DBS Code of Practice and undertakes to treat all applicants for positions fairly. It undertakes not to discriminate unfairly against any subject of a DBS Certificate on the basis of conviction or other information revealed.

We promote equality of opportunity for all with the right mix of talent, skills and potential and welcome applications from a wide range of candidates, including those with criminal records. We select all applicants for interview based on their skills, qualifications and experience. Unless the nature of the position allows Bracknell Forest Council to ask questions about the entire criminal record we only ask about “unspent” convictions as defined in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Having a criminal record will not necessarily bar someone from working with us. This will depend on the nature of the position and the circumstances and background of those offences.

A DBS Certificate is only requested after a thorough risk assessment has indicated that one is both proportionate and relevant to the position concerned. For those positions where a certificate is required, all application packs will contain a statement that a certificate will be requested in the event of the applicant being offered the position.

At interview, or in a separate discussion, we ensure that an open and measured discussion takes place on the subject of any offences or other matter that might be relevant to the position. Failure to reveal information that is directly relevant to the position sought could lead to withdrawal of an offer of employment.

We undertake to discuss any matter revealed in a DBS Certificate with the person seeking the position before withdrawing a conditional offer of employment.

The DBS Code of Practice can be viewed on GOV.UK.

Information on unspent convictions

You must declare any convictions which occurred in the following periods, starting from the date the sentence was passed.

Table showing unspent convictions and notification periods

Type of sentence

Notification period

Imprisonment of 30 months or over

Must always be notified

Imprisonment of 6 to 30 months

Notify if in last 10 years

Imprisonment of 6 months or less

Notify if in last 7 years

Sentence of Borstal, Youth Custody Centre or Young Offender Institution

Notify if in last 7 years

Fine or Community Service Order

Notify if in last 5 years

Absolute Discharge

Notify if in last 6 months

Probation Order or Conditional Discharge

Notify if in last year (Or until order expires)

Contact information

Display Name Recruitment Team

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