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It is a criminal offence to offer employment for certain posts involving working with adults with care and support needs, defined as regulated activities, without employers checking the appropriate barred list. Other roles, with less responsibility for vulnerable groups will require a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) criminal record check only.

Details about the DBS can be found here:

Click here to find out if you can check someones criminal record

The following steps may be taken as part of an employers’ recruitment processes depending on the role:

  • Your identity will be confirmed by sight of original official documents such as a Birth Certificate, Passport etc in line with the Asylum and Immigration Act 2006.
  • Original documents relating to all the professional qualifications required to fulfil the post must be supplied.
  • Your employment history will be examined and clarification will be sought where there are gaps and discrepancies arising from information provided either by you as the candidate or your referee(s).
  • References will be used to check employment dates and relevant experience. A minimum of two written references will be taken up and, for some posts, these references will be requested prior to interview. The identity of all referees will be verified. All candidates are required to provide details of any unspent convictions. Most convictions must be disclosed for certain posts working with vulnerable groups.All jobs falling into this category will be identified on the Job Description.
  • For posts working with adults with care and support needs, a DBS check, and/or a barred list check will be required.The barred lists contain details of people deemed unsuitable to work with adults with care and support needs. All jobs requiring a DBS check and/or barred list check should be identified in the Job Description.

It is a criminal offence to apply, offer or accept to work with adults with care and support needs (paid or unpaid) if barred from working with adults with care and support needs.

Safer Recruitment Training is available via WSCB Multi Agency Training

Guidance for Safer Working Practices

Duty to refer

Referrals to the Disclosure and Barring Service:

The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 (SVGA) places a legal duty on Regulated Activity Providers (employers, volunteer managers and personnel suppliers) to refer any person who has:

Harmed or poses a risk of harm to a child or vulnerable adult;Satisfied the harm test; or Received a caution or conviction for a relevant offence.

Under the provisions of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act, 2006, the following groups have a power to make a referral to the DBS:

Local authorities (safeguarding role);Education and library boards;Health and social care (HSC) trusts (NI);Keepers of registers eg General Medical Council, Nursing and Midwifery Council;Supervisory authorities eg Care Quality Commission, Ofsted.

Finally it may also be beneficial to register with us (e-database) so that you are kept informed of changes to our services as they are applied.

Further information and guidance, including factsheets and instructions can be found in the DBS referrals guidance and Making Safeguarding Referrals to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) leaflet.

Referring a teacher in England to the Teaching Agency

If the person to be referred to the DBS is a teacher in England consideration should also be given to refer the case to the Teaching Agency. The Teaching Agency is an Executive Agency of the Department for Education, responsible for the regulation of teachers in respect of serious misconduct.

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