Supporting ex-prisoners to go back to work 

M Group Services and its operating businesses are committed to creating an environment in which our people feel valued, supported and fulfilled. National Inclusion Week is just over a month away (26 September–2 October) so we are taking a moment to recognise and celebrate our diverse workforce.

Our priority is to build and maintain inclusive environments for everyone, aspiring to be the employer of choice within the sectors we operate with a skilled, sustainable workforce that can deliver on behalf of our clients. As part of our people commitment, we are developing a strategy to support ex-offenders looking to enter the workplace.

Here’s the story of one person and how IWJS has supported them to have a new start in life.

“I am a 38-year-old ex-prisoner and I work for IWJS.

“I was born and raised in St Ann’s, Nottingham by my single mother. I left school when I was 12 with no education. At that point my life spiralled out of control. By the time I was 18, I was already in prison. I remained there for about 15 years.

“When I was released, the world had changed. Phones had coloured screens and social media was a big part of people’s lives. I spent roughly five years searching for work with no luck. No matter how much I begged for a chance it seemed I was destined for Job Seekers’ Allowance, or a life of crime.

I was recalled to prison and while I was there, I worked in the gym where my work ethic was noticed by a governor who asked why I was wasting myself. I explained that I tried and no one would give me a chance.

“I was released from prison again, knowing what was ahead. I was all out of faith and hope. I had roughly four jobs all of which ended with me being asked about my criminal history, then getting fired despite being easily the most productive worker all because of a single action in 2002.

“One day my phone rang and it was the prison governor. They asked if they could pass my details on to someone. I agreed. Then I was contacted by a lady called Jen Mendelson, Resourcing Manager at M Group Services, who arranged an interview for me. Through all of this I can’t say I was hopeful. I have been here before. Then came the call and Jen told me I had got the job.

“I have worked for the company for four months now, I am treated the same as everyone else. The company has already spent thousands investing in me and my future. So far, I have completed my working at heights course, first aider course, high-power jetting course and manual handling course. As well as gaining my provisional HGV license, they have also paid for my medical, I have life insurance, a pension and paid holidays.

“Most importantly, IWJS gave me (and three other ex-offenders) not just a chance but hope and a future. I can plan to settle down and start a family with no worries.

“I am a HGV driver and high-powered jetting specialist. I am a part of M Group Services and my past is history.”

The individual’s manager said: “I could see how much they wanted this opportunity. They’ve grabbed it with both hands and asked more than once to put their name down for any courses on offer.

“I now have drivers asking if they can have the individual as their assistant for the day because of their excellent work ethic. This individual has been a success story in my eyes and shows there are people who just need a chance.”

The Group wants to ensure that everyone is given an opportunity to achieve their personal and professional ambitions and aspirations. We want to enable everyone to feel comfortable with being themselves at work regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, disability, sexuality, social background, religion, or belief.

To find out about our inclusion commitment, please visit:

If you would like to find out more about the jobs we have available, please click here: