As Rachel reported in her post on 11 March, a number of changes to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 came into force on 10 March 2014.
Rachel summarised the changes in her post but I thought it would also be helpful to set out the specific changes in two tables (one dealing with adult offenders and one with young offenders):
The changes are therefore fairly significant and, according to the Ministry of Justice, have been made so that "offenders can turn their back on a life of crime and can get back into honest work" (the Ministry's research showing that offenders who find employment are less likely to re-offend).
Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, commented on the changes saying:
“They will mean that people who have turned their backs on crime will be able to move on with their lives. Evidence shows that former offenders who are able to get back into the world of work and contribute to society are less likely to reoffend. Making a mistake and committing a minor crime when you are fifteen shouldn’t mean you are barred from employment for the rest of your life.”
Let's hope the aims behind the changes are met.