Bedford Borough Council, as employers, needs to take action in a number of different areas to ensure, to the best of their ability, the people who they employ – as paid staff, volunteers or contractors – are committed to providing good quality care and support and are not a risk to adults in receipt of care and support services, or their carers. Undertaking robust criminal records checks is part of a raft of safer recruitment measures, which are designed to try to prevent unsuitable people being employed to work with vulnerable groups. As well as recruitment processes, training, staff supervision and appraisal programmes are vital to ensuring good working practices.
The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) helps employers make safer recruitment decisions. It is responsible for:
There are two barred lists maintained by the Disclosure and Barring Service in relation to those who are:
A person who is barred from working with children or adults will be committing a criminal offence if they work, volunteer or try to work or volunteer with the group from which they have been barred.
An organisation which knowingly employs someone who is barred to work with that particular group will also be committing a criminal offence.
An organisation is legally obliged to inform the Disclosure and Barring Service if a member of staff or a volunteer is dismissed because they have harmed a child or adult, or would have been dismissed if they had not resigned or otherwise left.
Click here to view A guide to eligibility for criminal record checks, DBS
The role of the DBS is to assist employers to make safer recruitment decisions in relation to paid staff, volunteers or contractors. Through undertaking criminal records checks it identifies candidates who may be unsuitable.
The DBS also provides an online Update Service, to which people can subscribe. This enables them to keep their criminal record certificate up to date, so it can be taken with them from role to role, as long as they remain within the same workforce. Employers can undertake instant, online checks of a person’s status, as long as they have registered with the update service. A new DBS check will only be required if the Update Service check indicates there has been a change in the person’s status, due to new information added.
Regulated activity is work which involves close and unsupervised contact with adults, and which cannot be undertaken by a person who is on the Disclosure and Barring Service’s Barred List for adults.
There are six categories of people who will fall within the definition of regulated activity (including anyone who provides day to day management or supervision of those people):
There is a duty on a ‘regulated activity provider’ to ascertain whether a person is barred before permitting that person to engage in Regulated Activity.
It is a criminal offence for a barred individual to take part in regulated activity, or for an employer/voluntary organisation knowingly to employ a barred person in a regulated activity role.
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