Ched Evans – Sentence Served?

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Ched Evans is a convicted rapist and has served his jail term – now he is ready to go back to work and is struggling to find a position. He happens to be a footballer – which makes that job hunting all the harder

This former footballer is fast becoming a man to avoid – as Oldham are finding out today as they showed an interest in signing him, causing a 20,000 signature petition against him becoming a player. So here’s the question – at what point does fame or money stop you from doing your job once you have served your term?

The reason Evans was charged was because he took advantage of an intoxicated woman, he still denies the event and has shown no remorse – his guilt is not really the issue, his employ-ability is. Consider one of your colleagues had been the one arrested and sent down on a rape charge – should they get their job back? Which jobs would you be able to do with your name on the sex register? Where is the line drawn? This is what makes me interested in this story.

Obviously as a teacher, healthcare professional or policeman he would not be allowed back, but as a plumber or engineer would he be okay? The two big arguments against him returning to football are the role model status and the wages he would earn – it appears that we don’t want to see those who have committed serious crimes to succeed again after they have served their term. To play devil’s advocate I would ask you to consider if this is more to do with the rape or the status he is afforded as a professional footballer? The other consideration is that even though he was charged, what if he was innocent. It makes no difference to the conviction – unless proved – but perhaps to our empathy.

From a personal point of view I don’t think that someone convicted of such a serious and violent crime should be in a position where he (or she) will then return to such a high paid and public position. They should accept the situation and remove themselves from public life – however out with the world of the rich and famous I am interested in where we draw the line with former criminals. With any serious crime the purpose of prison is to rehabilitate so we should in theory accept that they can work wherever their abilities lie (without endangering anyone).

Regardless how he views the situation himself, Ched Evans and those representing him must realize that he is toxic and will not be welcomed wholeheartedly at any club in the UK. Some would argue that he has served his time and we need to give him another chance, otherwise what is the point of prison in the first place.

I’m sure this story will roll on for weeks to come, but consider your own situation – would you be comfortable working next to a former criminal convicted of a serious crime? I’d like to think I would be open to giving them another chance – but we need to consider each example on its own merit. For me the lack of remorse of the man is the major issue, had he shown that he regretted what he did then perhaps he’d have more people supporting his return to his sport.

JD

P.S. Due to hassle I’ve had in the past when writing about rape related issues, I in no way condone rape in any form. It is a heinous and violent way to attack someone. This blog is only asking the questions surrounding the issue of this case and others like it. Hope that makes it clear.

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