Job-hunting with a criminal past

Entering the world of work can be difficult for ex-offenders Continue reading the main story Related Stories Criminal record checks to be relaxed 'Past crime stops me finding work' Watch Fraudster calls for more job help A change in the law means thousands of ex-offenders looking for work will have their records wiped far sooner. But what is job-hunting like for those with a criminal past? "All my life I've been in and out of jail, taking from my family and society. I was in for supplying heroin and I've got a history of drug addiction." Released six weeks ago, 47-year-old Londoner Joanne, who does not want to give her full name, has been in prison five times before. On paper she may not be the most employable person, but she is trying to change that. The routine of getting out of bed in the morning and going to a workplace - any workplace - is what she feels she needs to avoid going back to drugs. She would like to work with animals, but says retail or catering is more likely."I can understand that most employers wouldn't want to hire someone with a conviction," says Joanne. But she is hoping to find "that one person" willing to give her a chance.

COMMENT: Nice to see the BBC covering stories as such.