The aim of this policy is to state LFRS approach towards employing people who have criminal convictions.

LFRS is committed to equality of opportunity for all job applicants and aims to select people for employment on the basis of their individual skills, abilities, experience, knowledge and, where appropriate, qualifications and training.

LFRS will therefore consider ex-offenders for employment on their individual merits. LFRS approach towards employing ex-offenders differs, however, depends on whether the job is or is not exempt from the provisions of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Posts covered by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

LFRS will not automatically refuse to employ a particular individual just because he/she has a previous criminal conviction.

During job interviews, LFRS will ask job applicants to disclose any unspent convictions, but will not ask job applicants questions about spent convictions, nor expect them to disclose any spent convictions.

If an applicant has a conviction that is not spent and if the nature of the offence is relevant to the job for which he/she has applied, LFRS will review the individual circumstances of the case and may at its discretion, decline to select the individual for employment.

Jobs that are exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

If the job into which the organisation is seeking to recruit is one of the excluded jobs listed in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 or the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exclusions and Exceptions) Scotland Order 2003, LFRS will require the applicant to disclose all convictions, whether spent or unspent (other than where protected cautions and protected convictions do not need to be disclosed, depending on the job concerned). Even in these circumstances, however, LFRS will not refuse to employ a particular individual unless the nature of the conviction has some relevance to the job for which the individual has applied.

Furthermore, if the job is exempt, LFRS will, once it has selected the person to whom it wishes to offer employment, seek documentary evidence about that person's criminal convictions. LFRS will seek the applicant's agreement to make a joint application to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) for a standard, enhanced or enhanced with DBS barred lists check (as appropriate). LFRS will reimburse the individual the fee for obtaining the appropriate criminal records certificate. Where the individual is a member of the DBS update service, LFRS will, with his or her permission, carry out a status check on any current certificate.

LFRS is committed to ensuring that all information provided about an individual's criminal convictions, including any information released in disclosures, is used fairly and stored and handled appropriately and in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 and the General Data Protection Regulations. Data held on file about an individual's criminal convictions will be held only as long as it is required for employment purposes and will not be disclosed to any unauthorised person.