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Looking for a second chance

27 April 2022

A scheme to give ex-prisoners another chance at employment is proving a win-win for both employee and employer, with Clipper Logistics supporting it in a big way, says charity Tempus Novo.

WE - TWO serving Senior Prison Officers (Steve Freer and Val Wawrosz) - founded Tempus Novo at HMP Leeds in 2014. We operate within prisons to identify offenders committed to transforming their lives. Upon release, these prisoners continue to work with Tempus Novo to gain employment while also receiving hands on mentorship and support for a minimum of 12 months.

Tempus Novo works with serving prisoners in Category D prisons (low risk) who attend work and then return to prison after their shift has finished. 

Extensive multi-agency risk assessments are completed before a serving prisoner can be granted Release On Temporary License (ROTL) and given permission to attend work. Tempus Novo then use an assessment process to determine whether a candidate is ‘work ready’.

We offer careful screening and matching. It’s in all our interests to get the right person with the right skills and attitude in the right job. We make sure we understand what each employer needs and their business culture.

In addition, a dedicated caseworker works with managers and supervisors to ensure success. We provide an extra 12 months of support to ensure an effective placement for the long term.

It is not a soft option. We understand business needs. We outperform commercial labour agencies. We only place people who can be trusted and have the right attitude.

Over the past 7 years Tempus Novo has placed 604 people into work and worked with around 70 companies and with no damage to any company reputation. Quite the opposite in fact, with some of our companies winning awards and investment for their commitment to ESG (Environment, Social and Governance).

Only 27 of our service users have returned to custody, which is a rate of 5% – compared to a national average of 45% in 12 months and 64% in 24 months. Job retention rates are at over 75%.

Furthermore, our service users tend to be committed employees, with an average absence rate of 2 days per year compared to industry average of 5.8 days.

As Clipper’s chief people officer, Richard Cowlishaw says: ‘As group HR director for Clipper Logistics I have worked with the Tempus Novo team in building a solid partnership over the past 3 years. We have recruited well over 250 ex-offenders in this time with great results – we have some fantastic case studies that we can share that describe the journey of some of the ex-offender recruits into Clipper and how their careers have flourished and progressed – some of whom are now in management positions’.

For more information, visit www.tempusnovo.org