Disclosure of youth criminal records: written response to Justices Committee inquiry

Document type
Corporate author(s)
Date of publication
1 November 2016
Young Offenders, Children and Young People
Social welfare
Material type

Download (243KB )

Unlock provides a response to the Justice Committee enquiry into the system governing the disclosure of youth criminal records.

Amongst the 10.5 mio people in England and Wales with a criminal record are many, who committed offenses when they were children or young adults. Unlock believes the current criminal record disclosure system acts as a significant barrier, preventing that children and young adults are able to put their past behind them. The current system, where records for young offenders are treated almost entirely the same as adult criminal records, places a disproportionate burden on childhood criminal records, working against rehabilitation.

The response is supported by a series of case studies.

Unlock argues there is a need for a nuanced approach to criminal records acquired as a young adult (between the ages of 18 and 25). The filtering system, as it was introduced in 2015, should be based on the sentence  and disposal, not on a list of offenses.

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