Giving ex-offenders a fair chance - 5 years of Ban the Box

From 15 to 26 October 2018, Business in the Community is marking the 5th anniversary of Ban the Box, which calls on UK employers to give ex-offenders a fair chance to compete for jobs by removing the criminal records tick box from application forms.

Since 2013, more than 110 employers, including the entire Civil Service, have committed to creating fair employment opportunities for ex-offenders across about 800,000 roles. Recent sign ups include Fujitsu, Saint Gobain, Prestige Recruitment and Barkers LLP, proving all sectors and sizes of business can Ban the Box.

While many of the leading companies in sectors like construction and facilities management have seized on the opportunity to sign up, other sectors such as retail and hospitality are lagging behind. Just three retail companies have signed up so far and the anniversary is a chance to start conversations with top retailers to make the business case and bring more employers on board. 

Ban the Box doesn't mean organisations can't ask about criminal convictions. It just moves the question to later in the recruitment process so that employers consider a candidate's skills, attributes and experience first.

As Ian, an inbound team leader for Boots, says, “If ever I leave Boots I know my criminal conviction will be off-putting for any employer. I’d have to tick the box and so they’d put my application to the bottom of the pile. I’d like to think my experience would speak for itself but I know that once you tick that box you’re very unlikely to get even get an interview.”

Read more about how Boots is changing lives and find out how Ban the Box and employing ex-offenders is making a real impact in construction.

Don't let a tick box put off potential talent - find out more and sign up to Ban the Box.

Media contact
Alex Delaney, PR manager, Business in the Community, Tel: 020 7566 8694, Email: