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Changing lives for a safer London
The London Community Rehabilitation Company works with offenders to help them lead responsible and law abiding lives.
Our over-riding aim is to reduce reoffending and protect the public.
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Meet Wayne – An Employment Engagement Worker

Wayne LewisAs a professional careers adviser Wayne Lewis enjoys finding people the right jobs in the right industry so they can have a fulfilling working life.

Speaking with candidates as they get ready for the big interview is second nature to Wayne, who has helped hundreds, if not thousands, of people into work.

However his task is a little harder than most careers advisers – Wayne helps offenders back into work.

 

Day to Day

Wayne is an Employment Engagement Worker at London Community Rehabilitation Company and works with offenders who are either on a community order, a suspended sentence or on ‘licence’ from prison.

In an effort to find a range of jobs he also builds partnerships between private companies and public sector organisations.

“Clearly any person with a criminal history is going to find it harder to get work,” Wayne said.

“This may not be through want of trying but because many employers would rather play safe and employ someone without a conviction.

“My job is to find organisations, which will take on offenders and match any roles that come up with the right offender.”

In the last few years Wayne, who previously worked in a similar role at Jobcentre Plus, has created partnerships with Asda, Sainsbury’s, Bovis, Transport for London, the Hilton Foundation and South-West Trains among others.

 

The biggest challenge

The London Community Rehabilitation Company also has partnerships with other companies, many of whom have a Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, such as Pret A Manger, Land Securities, De Vere and Carillion.

Wayne said: “In order to build successful relationships with employers we have to be open and honest about the offenders we put forward for interview.

“For instance a company would need to know if an individual had an arson offence, as this may affect their employer’s liability insurance, and a hotel would want to know an offender’s criminal history to fully manage risk and protect their customers.

“In addition we do not compromise on public protection so would never consider putting an offender with sexual convictions forward for roles working with children or vulnerable people.

“Despite the many issues we have managed to place lots of offenders into a huge variety of roles, working in construction, hospitality, customer service, health and fitness and cycle maintenance.”

In order to pre-screen offenders and ensure they are suitable for a job, Wayne often holds employment workshops. These pre-selection workshops help manage expectations, review interview etiquette and techniques and appropriate dress codes.

 

 

The last word

Wayne also works with Job Centre Plus to ensure offenders who gain employment, exit the welfare system correctly.

He said: “Research has shown that regular employment reduces an individual’s chance of re-offending.

“A job provides an income, improves self esteem and confidence and gives an incentive to move on and enjoy more successful and happier life.”

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