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    Opportunities for all - ex-offender employment

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Probation case manager Lynsey Barker has turned her life around having once been a former alcohol and drug addict and repeat offender.

After a long journey of hardship beginning with the death of her father Eric Hankin at the Hillsborough disaster, Lynsey was sentenced to a string of Community Orders.

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Scott Hill - Interserve HR DirectorInterserve’s Scott Hill discusses the business and community benefits of training prisoners and providing them with the skills needed to gain employment after release.

He explains how this can broaden the talent pool available to UK companies, provide them with a more diverse workforce and help save on recruitment costs. 

Read Scott's story via Business in the Community website.

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I get access to a huge pool of talent that a large percentage of employers aren’t even looking at. Some of the most highly skilled people I’ve ever met have been in prisons.

Scott Hill, Interserve HR Director

Re-offending under the spotlight

Take a look at some of the statistics that shine a light on the challenges ex-offenders have in gaining and holding onto jobs employment.

tackling re-offending

the social issue with re-offending

50% employers said they would not hire ex-offenders

The scale of the challenge is well known and understood.

Almost half of those who go to prison re-offend within 12 months of release and only one in four ex-offenders find employment after being released. Meanwhile, 50% of employers told a 2016 DWP/YouGov survey that they would not hire offenders or ex-offenders.

Reduce re-offending with employment

Download the ex-offender infographic

Employment has been proven to reduce re-offending and government research shows that 'having a job' is one of the main factors that deters ex-offenders from re-offending.

One way to start is to remove some of the unnecessary barriers that can often mean suitable jobs are not accessible to people with a criminal conviction.

spread the word about ban the box

Ban the BoxBan the Box aims to give people with criminal convictions a second chance at fulfilling their potential to become valued employees.

We encourage employers to the remove the conviction tick box from application forms and ask about criminal convictions later in the recruitment process.

Find out how you can sign up to Ban the Box

take action today

Interserve’s ‘Opportunities for All’ campaign focuses on how businesses can provide skills and employment opportunities to those that need them most. It looks at the ways in which we can:

  • Support people who have high barriers to employment 

  • Celebrate the good work taking place in communities around us, and 

  • Share ideas that inspire action to make a real difference.

We help ex-offenders get back into employment and were one of the earliest adopters of Business in the Community's Ban the Box initiative. We also work directly with prisons to open up and create more opportunities for people who have come into contact with the criminal justice system.

We hope you will support our campaign and explore how you can create better 'opportunities for all'. Share your story with #oppsforall or get in touch if you have questions about how you can get involved.

Working with our Justice customers


Paul discusses the pride he takes in helping ex-offenders turn their lives around and helping them become valuable members of society. View his story below:

Working with our Justice clients

An innovative approach to reduce re-offending

The Transforming Rehabilitation agenda has enabled the private sector to invest in new ways to address the high levels of re-offending.

Building a training prison for young adult males

Working under the MoJ Strategic Alliance Framework, the HMP/YOI Isis development comprises a 480-place Category C training prison.

Improving offenders' skills and opportunities in Leeds

At Interserve we provide a range of services to people on behalf of the UK government including probation. One area where we provide all of these services is Leeds.

Latest Insight
Working in prisons:
Interserve's Facilities
Management Academy
Helping ex-offenders get jobs

Ban the Box calls on UK employers to create a fair opportunity for ex-offenders to compete for jobs.

Latest Insight
Why women in the criminal
justice system should be
treated differently

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