Ex-offenders to find jobs for former inmates

Mark Hirst and Grant Doyle.

Mark Hirst and Grant Doyle.

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A pair of ex-offenders are opening a new recruitment company for people who have spent time in prison or have a criminal record.

Grant Doyle and Mark Hirst will launch their new business Out4Success in Wakefield city centre next week.

The pair met when both were serving their sentences at Leeds Prison and then again at HMP Wealstun.

Mr Doyle, 32, was sentenced to 14 months when he decided to take the law into his own hands following a spate of burglaries at his business premises .

And Mr Hirst served two years of a four-year sentence.

Mr Doyle, chairman, said: “At Wealstun we were both involved with the induction programme and spoke to new inmates about what to expect.

“We noticed that the same people kept coming back and they said, although they were given plenty of support in prison, once they stepped outside they were on their own.

“We realised there was a need for an organisation to work with ex-offenders to break down the barriers that stopped employers from taking on anyone who’d been inside.”

Mr Hirst, vice chairman, added: “When you’re in prison you have no confidence and that’s something we want to change.

“Although you’re encouraged to speak to people from Community Rehabilitation Companies, they’ve never walked in your shoes.

“But because, like them, we will always be classed as ex-offenders, we can eliminate those barriers and talk to them as equals.”