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An old, minor, criminal record does tend to tell you quite a bit about a person

(78 Posts)
BoldAdventurer Wed 12-Nov-14 20:09:44

Until recently I would have said that once a person's done their time, maybe learned from their mistakes and moved on it's time to let them put it behind them. I'm not talking about Ched Evans but much less serious crimes.

However, in my current job I get to see staff's DBS checks (and old CRB checks). We employ a lot of people on not much more than minimum wage and there are a handful who have spent convictions. One is for ABH when she was a teenager and there are a number of benefit frauds. These are all people who have been working for the company for a number of years and at the time of thier appointment, it was considered that their past wasn't relevant to their ability to do the job and that if you pay badly you take what you can get .

Anyway, these few staff are more trouble than the rest put together. They are the ones who often make mistakes on their timesheets, but strangely always in their favour, the ones who have loads of one day absences, the ones who do the bare minimum when they are in work, the ones who stir up trouble when unpopular changes are made etc.

So, AIBU, to think that whilst these convictions are very old and it's reasonable to expect that they could be forgotten, they do in fact give quite a good indication of the person's character?

ArsenicSoup Wed 12-Nov-14 20:12:11

Oh dear

CarpetCrawler Wed 12-Nov-14 20:14:14


ghostyslovesheep Wed 12-Nov-14 20:16:36

erm hmm I'd get this thread deleted

CarpetCrawler Wed 12-Nov-14 20:17:50

No, I'm bored.

<gets comfy>

Biscuitsneeded Wed 12-Nov-14 20:18:41

My DP did something very silly when he was 20. There was no violence involved, but he was very angry about something and stupidly took matters into his own hands. I don't want to be too specific but he attempted to right a wrong himself, but what he did was a criminal action and he went in front of a magistrate for it. He can't forgive himself for it. He is ridiculously upstanding and moral and does everything by the book. I don't judge him for what he did in a rash moment years before I knew him. I think you have been reading the Daily Mail too much.

inabeautifulplace Wed 12-Nov-14 20:19:15

I would say that you are naturally prejudiced against these people and thus more sensitive to their behaviour.

Seriouslyffs Wed 12-Nov-14 20:19:20


Bluestocking Wed 12-Nov-14 20:20:09

It's called confirmation bias, OP. Google it.

KurriKurri Wed 12-Nov-14 20:20:20

Is that you Nigel?

CarpetCrawler Wed 12-Nov-14 20:21:00

It's called how to wind up a forum.

BarbarianMum Wed 12-Nov-14 20:22:36


My experience is that many people who were troubled teens (and had minor brushes with the law) tend to make good youth workers.

ArsenicSoup Wed 12-Nov-14 20:24:37

On a serious note, sensitive data is being too widely and indiscriminately disseminated if idiotic peeps like the OP are getting sight of it. This stuff should be limited to senior management and HR professionals of reasonable intelligence who can be trusted to treat the information maturely and with full confidentiality.

BoldAdventurer Wed 12-Nov-14 20:25:09

I would say the complete opposite inabeautiful.

Until I started this job I would have been very liberal about it and agreed with the people who made the original appointments, that it was in the past and therefore irrelevant. My experience here suggests otherwise.

My opinion of the behaviour of this particular group of people was formed before I knew about their pasts. I won't allow the Daily Mail in the house.

There was absolutely no intention to wind anyone up, merely to have a (slightly) interesting discussion.

lljkk Wed 12-Nov-14 20:28:05

Weird. I know people with criminal records who are so boring conventional no trouble responsible helpful members of the community home-owning slow-cooker owning drive-the-speed limit types. Maybe your interview panels are just attracted to a hint of danger?

(why don't we have a popcorn emoticon?)

SophiaPetrillo Wed 12-Nov-14 20:36:32

Completely disagree. And I've worked in criminal justice.

RufusTheReindeer Wed 12-Nov-14 20:42:13

I think YABU

As with everything in life some people act like twats, some have a criminal record and so "prove" your theory but most do not have a record and are still how does that work

I only know one person that I absolutly know has a criminal record, he made a mistake but is well respected at his job and works very hard at his job

maninawomansworld Wed 12-Nov-14 20:46:03

If that is your first hand experience then I find it difficult to see how anyone can call you unreasonable to be honest.

There are ALWAYS exceptions but from reading you original post I would guess that the key factor is that you employ low skilled , minimum wage types. I.E. that type of person from a poor background with little education or opportunity to improve themselves will naturally be a bit more inclined to round their expenses or timesheets up, think nothing of bunking off for a day to go to the away game with their football team etc.

I bet there are as many (if not more) people in wider society with similar 'old' low level convictions from years ago who have become well educated, professionals with families, pillars of the community and all the rest of it.
I'm not sure your theory would hold up when applied to the whole population but I can see why, in your own 'study group' (less educated people on low wages) that your theory seems to hold true.

IAmAShitHotLawyer Wed 12-Nov-14 20:50:12

YANBU - My circumstances are very similar to yours and I completely agree with your theory

See, here's my thinking. You get someone at work who has a caution for battery and a conviction for affray. Now, I've been around aggressive people my whole life, grown up with them. THEY ARE NOT JUST AGGRESSIVE ONCE - it's a genetic thing. They will have been aggressive many many many times before that conviction and possibly been charged and found not guilty on other occasions.

I simply don't believe that someone with a caution for battery just lost their temper that one time and was unlucky enough to be taken through the criminal justice system and found guilty. And that is why I will not employ someone with such a background. They certainly have no business being in the care industry that's for sure.

Likewise someone with a conviction for theft or shoplifting. It just beggers belief that they only carried out that dishonest act once and were unfortunate enough by sheer co-incident to get caught, charged and found guilty for it. Who really wants to work with someone with a conviction for theft? I take my handbag to work for gods sake

CarpetCrawler Wed 12-Nov-14 20:51:06

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

TalkinPeace Wed 12-Nov-14 20:51:28

One place I worked we had so many employees on probation that the officer used to come down to site to do their weekly appointments.

They fought, they stole, they joyrode, they did drugs.

We gave them something better to do with their time
We gave them something to lose if they were daft
They almost all sorted themselves out.

The murderer was a bit odd, but good at what he did so we left him to it (on licence)

ArsenicSoup Wed 12-Nov-14 20:51:44

If that is your first hand experience then I find it difficult to see how anyone can call you unreasonable to be honest.

If she genuinely has access to DBS records and is posting about them here how could you possibly call her anything other than unreasonable? confused

SophiaPetrillo Wed 12-Nov-14 20:51:50

This isn't going to end well.

bearleftmonkeyright Wed 12-Nov-14 20:52:33

It seems that the staff you are referring to clearly garner very little respect from the organisation you work for. Your thinking is very very dangerous. It garners the belief that if you treat people like shit and they react then their reaction is wrong because you believe it is their nature. TBH your thinking is so messed up I cannot even begin to rationalise why you would think this to be true. If an organisation make unpopular changes to peoples working conditions of course staff are going to kick off. That would be true of anyone, including myself. I don't have a criminal record. I cannot believe that you are sitting in judgement of people where you have access to confidential information. I truly hope you don't have a position of real responsibility.

Vivacia Wed 12-Nov-14 20:54:43

You're not exactly a student of statistics are you, OP?

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