The Futility Monster

He'll pointlessly derive more enjoyment out of your resources than you

Criminal Records Disclosures To Be Curbed?

Posted by The Futility Monster on March 19, 2010 @ 10:35

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Imagine my surprise this morning when I read that the government is taking seriously a report by their new “watchdog” on criminal records which says

… many lives have already been affected by… disclosures [of old and minor crimes] in employment vetting checks.

The extent to which such information is passed on to employers will now be curtailed after the Home Office accepted her concerns and promised action.

If this is true, it is truly remarkable. A government, which has done its level best to create and empower the bureaucratic nightmare that is the CRB, and a state in which people are guilty until proven innocent by the Politburo, freely and willingly admitting that maybe it’s gone a little too far and ought to row back a little.

It’s so unbelievable to me that it can’t possibly be right. The criminal records Disclosure service has grown inexorably in scope, as more and more employers use them for all kinds of unintended purposes. Then there is the impending start of the Independent Safeguarding Authority, which will provide a continuous link between an employer and the repository of criminal records, so that any “relevant” information” can be disclosed on a regular timely basis.

And now we’re being told that, after all, the state was wrong and may limit the amount of additional information given to employers?

The problem with enhanced disclosures is that they have always given out information on general police intelligence, all spent convictions, whether relevant or not and allegations, even unfounded ones that may be malicious.

In certain cases, you can make a serious argument that releasing such background information, not tested or proven in a court of law, is a necessary evil in the modern world. We’ve had to sacrifice these liberties for wider protection.

But now, maybe this string of frequently irrelevant information, a minor caution for smoking dope while a youth which may be used to stop someone from becoming a football coach, or a taxi driver, may be coming to an end.

What makes me so shocked is that, in case you didn’t know, there’s an election coming up. And far from wanting to look “soft” on matters of this delicacy, you would have thought the rhetoric would be being ramped up.

Or maybe they’re just accepting it knowing they won’t be in power to implement it and it’ll be all down to the Tories.

Cynicism. That’s more like it!

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