The Corbett Network with NACRO and Dominic Headley & Associates organised a conference in the superb auditorium of hosts Evershed Sutherlands. The conference highlighted the business benefits derived from working with those with a criminal record and who want to change. The Tap Into New Talent conference made a difference.


Lady Corbett opens the conference

The Corbett Network banner

Presentations included those from Ian Bickers shortly to be CEO of The New Futures Network at the Ministry of Justice; Tom Hadley, Director of Policy and Professional Services at the REC about their Good Recruitment Campaign; Dominic Headley, Director, DHA , who gave an interactive legal briefing on recruiting safely and fairly and also the tangled web of CRB and Greg Mangham, CEO, Only a Pavement Away, who outlined the benefits of their innovative approach to meeting the business needs of the hospitality industry through inclusive recruitment.

A panel of employers then described a workforce determined not to go back to prison and consequently were loyal, reliable and hard working. Three Corbett Networkers followed this session and introduced their ex-offender clients who told, often quite emotionally, how a job, someone to support and have confidence in them had turned their lives around.

Lady Corbett, founder of The Corbett Network said: “This Network is dedicated to reducing re-offending. We support people with convictions to find and keep a job and I believe this conference persuaded employers that people with convictions are grateful for a chance to change their lives and worked harder to ensure they kept their job. There is much still to do but this conference is a start.“

Dominic Headley, Director, DHA said: “My legal briefing included a call to the government for a complete overhaul of the criminal record disclosure regime and for Ban the Box to become law. We have a societal and economic need to remove all unnecessary barriers that prevent people with convictions moving forward with their lives.”

Caroline Drummond, Policy and Public Affairs Manager at Nacro said: “For us, employment is at the heart of supporting people to move forward with their lives, whether that is someone who has just left prison or someone in the community. It was fantastic to see so many employers engaging at this event and we look forward to working with them in the future.”


Ian Bickers from New Futures Network


Tom Hadley Director of Policy & Professional Services, REC


Dominic Headley of Mind the Gap in full flow

Photographs by David Mills.



The very essence of the conference and the very heart of what was discussed was about the individual and one talent pool. No labels, no acronyms no tag just talent - from an untapped talent pool of over 11 million

Great starting a week so positively - amazing feedback from The Corbett Network #Tapintotalent event - congratulations - so many employers so inspired and now see potential in employing people with convictions

Exceptionally moving speeches from 4 individuals. When an employer wants to know how to measure success - just listen to the journey of an individual, better than any statistics

Fantastic event today. Inspirational real life stories, some great people and organisations in support of real change. Pleasure to represent @TidewayLondon and be on the employer panel. Let’s make a change & realise potential #tapintotalent

Interesting event topic today - supporting ex-offenders to find & sustain employment. An opportunity for care employers to consider widening the pool of candidates they recruit from?

ian_bickers lead on New Futures Network talking a lot of sense at the #tapintotalent event today. Really hope his plans come to fruition.

I like to get things done and we need to collaborate” @ian_bickers

We will not address re-offending unless we get better at helping ppl w/ convictions get into work

We're at the #tapintotalent event today, hearing from some inspirational speakers on how we can shake up the system, and meeting with employers interested in offering opportunities to ex-offenders. All positive stuff!

Brilliant Q&A with employers who take the initiative to recruit, support and employ people with criminal records. Inspiring. #tapintotalent