Frequently Asked Questions


 

Please find listed below Frequently Asked Questions regarding safeguarding issues and Disclosures.

 

 Catholic Church Safeguarding FAQs:

 

What is the Catholic Church's policy on the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults?

 

The Church recognises the personal dignity and rights of all Vulnerable People towards whom it has a special responsibility.  The Church and individual members of it undertake to take all appropriate steps to maintain a safe environment for all and to practice fully and positively Christ's Ministry towards children, young people and vulnerable adults and to respond sensitively and compassionately to their needs in order to help keep them safe from harm.

 

The Church authorities will liaise closely with statutory agencies to ensure that any allegations of abuse are promptly and properly responded to and where appropriate survivors supported and perpetrators held to account.

 

The Church wishes to ensure that its parishes and Religious Congregations have the confidence to enable vulnerable people to have peace of mind, knowing they will be cared for and loved by their Christian community.

 

How do I find out who deals with safeguarding matters in the Catholic Church in England and Wales?  

 

You can contact your local Parish office or Church, or the Diocesan office to find out how to get in touch with the Safeguarding Coordinator or Local Safeguarding Representative.  Details of the Safeguarding team based in your diocese can be found via the relevant Diocesan website available under the "Links" page of this website.  

 

What is meant by “safeguarding” children or vulnerable adults?

 

Below are some the main definitions to assist you in understanding what is meant by child abuse, child protection and safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults.  It is important to remember that if you are not sure what is meant or whether concerns exist you should seek clarification via a Safeguarding Co-ordinator, Safeguarding Officer or Local Safeguarding Representative.

 

Definition of a child

Anyone who has not yet reached their 18th birthday. The fact that a child has reached 16 years of age, is living independently or is in further education, is a member of the armed forces, is in hospital or in custody in the secure estate, does not change his/her status or entitlements to services or protection.

 

Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children

·        Protecting children from maltreatment

·        Preventing impairment of children's health or development

·        Ensuring that children are growing up in circumstances consistent with the provision of safe and effective care

·        Taking action to enable all children to have the best life chances.

 

Child Protection

Part of safeguarding and promoting welfare. This refers to the activity that is undertaken to protect specific children who are suffering, or are likely to suffer, significant harm.

 

Abuse

A form of maltreatment of a child. Somebody may abuse or neglect a child by inflicting harm, or by failing to act to prevent harm. Children may be abused in a family or in an institutional or community setting by those known to them or, more rarely, by others (e.g. via the internet). They may be abused by an adult or adults, or another child or children.

 

Physical abuse

A form of abuse which may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning, suffocating or otherwise causing physical harm to a child. Physical harm may also be caused when a parent or carer fabricates the symptoms of, or deliberately induces, illness in a child.

 

Emotional abuse

The persistent emotional maltreatment of a child such as to cause severe and persistent adverse effects on the child’s emotional development. It may involve conveying to a child that they are worthless or unloved, inadequate, or valued only insofar as they meet the needs of another person. It may include not giving the child opportunities to express their views, deliberately silencing them or ‘making fun’ of what they say or how they communicate. It may feature age or developmentally inappropriate expectations being imposed on children. These may include interactions that are beyond a child’s developmental capability, as well as overprotection and limitation of exploration and learning, or preventing the child participating in normal social interaction. It may involve seeing or hearing the ill-treatment of another. It may involve serious bullying (including cyber bullying), causing children frequently to feel frightened or in danger, or the exploitation or corruption of children. Some level of emotional abuse is involved in all types of maltreatment of a child, though it alone.

 

Sexual abuse

Involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, not necessarily involving a high level of violence, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening. The activities may involve physical contact, including assault by penetration (for example, rape or oral sex) or non-penetrative acts such as masturbation, kissing, rubbing and touching outside of clothing. They may also include non-contact activities, such as involving children in looking at, or in the production of, sexual images, watching sexual activities, encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways, or grooming a child in preparation for abuse (including via the internet). Sexual abuse is not solely perpetrated by adult males. Women can also commit acts of sexual abuse, as can other children.

 

Neglect

The persistent failure to meet a child’s basic physical and/or psychological needs, likely to result in the serious impairment of the child’s health or development. Neglect may occur during pregnancy as a result of maternal substance abuse. Once a child is born, neglect may involve a parent or carer failing to: § provide adequate food, clothing and shelter (including exclusion from home or abandonment); § protect a child from physical and emotional harm or danger; § ensure adequate supervision (including the use of inadequate care-givers); or § ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment. It may also include neglect of, or unresponsiveness to, a child’s basic emotional needs.

 

These definitions are from ‘Working Together to Safeguard Children 2013’.

 

Definition of a Vulnerable Adult

 

A vulnerable adult is a person aged 18 or over,

 

'who is or may be in need of community care services by reason of mental or other disability, age or illness; and who is or may be unable to take care of him or herself, or unable to protect him or herself against significant harm or exploitation.'

Lord Chancellor's Department 1997 and Section 2 'No Secrets', Department of Health and the Home Office (2000).

 

 

The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 defines a vulnerable adult as follows:

 

'A person is vulnerable in the context of the setting in which they are situated or the service they receive as follows;

 

·        those in residential accommodation provided in connection with care or nursing or in receipt of domiciliary care services;

·        those receiving health care;

·        those in lawful custody or under the supervision of a probation officer;

·        those receiving a welfare service of a prescribed description or direct payments from a social services authority;

·        those receiving services, or taking part in activities, aimed at people with disabilities or special needs because of their age or state of health;

·        those who need assistance in the conduct of their affairs.

 

A person's level of vulnerability may increase or decrease according to the circumstances they experience at any given time. Vulnerable adults could include people with:

 

·        learning or physical disabilities;

·        a sensory impairment;

·        mental health needs;

·        who are HIV positive;

·        substance misuse needs;

·        dementia.

 

'Abuse is a violation of a person's human and civil rights by another person or persons' ('No Secrets', DoH 2000).

 

'Abuse may consist of a single act or repeated acts.  It may be physical, verbal or psychological, it may be an act of neglect or an omission to act or it may occur when a vulnerable person is persuaded to enter into a financial or sexual transaction to which he or she has not consented or cannot consent.  Abuse can occur in any relationship and may result in significant harm to or exploitation of the person subjected to it.'

('No Secrets', DoH 2000).

 

A consensus has emerged identifying the following main different forms of abuse, whether deliberate, through negligence or ignorance:

 

·        Physical abuse;

·        Sexual abuse;

·        Psychological abuse;

·        Financial or material abuse;

·        Neglect and acts of omission;

·        Discriminatory abuse.

 

Applying these definitions to different circumstances may not always be easy.  Many situations may involve combinations of these elements.  If there is difficulty in defining a situation this should be discussed with the Safeguarding Co-ordinator.

 

I am being abused by someone in the Church.  What should I do?

 

Tell someone as soon as possible.  What you say will be taken seriously.  You can choose who to talk to.  There are some people in the Church who have special safeguarding jobs; they are called Safeguarding Coordinators (at least one in every diocese) or Local Safeguarding Representatives (at least one in every parish).  Details of the Safeguarding Team based in your diocese can be found via the relevant Diocesan website (available under the “Links” page of this site). 

 

Alternatively, you may prefer to tell someone in the Church that you already know such as a priest or a youth leader.  They will make sure that you get help.  They need to let one of the above people know that there is a child or adult protection matter to be dealt with. 

 

You can also contact the local Police Child Protection Team or Social Services Child or Adult Protection Team in your area.  The telephone numbers for these will be in your local telephone directory or on websites. 

 

It is the policy of the Catholic Church to always inform statutory authorities (Police and Social Services) that abuse has been alleged.  This is done in order to prevent further abuse from happening and to make sure that past abuse is properly dealt with.

 

I have suffered abuse by someone in the Church in the past.  What should I do?

 

Understandably, many people find it difficult to tell anyone about the abuse they have suffered.  It may be many years after the event before a disclosure is made, perhaps when the victim is an adult.  Even then, the Church will act.  Tell someone about the abuse.  You will be listened to and what you have to say will be taken seriously. 

 

You can choose who you talk to.  There are some people in the Church who have special safeguarding jobs; they are called Safeguarding Coordinators (at least one in every diocese) or Local Safeguarding Representatives (at least one in every parish).  Details of the Safeguarding Team based in your Diocese can be found via the relevant Diocesan website (available under the “Links” page of this site).

 

Alternatively, you may prefer to tell someone in the Church that you already know such as a priest or a youth leader.  They will make sure that you get help.  They need to let one of the above people know that there was a child protection matter to be dealt with. 

 

You can also contact the local Police Child Protection Team or Social Services Child or Adult Protection Team in your area.  The telephone numbers for these will be in your local telephone directory or on websites.

 

Do not let the abuser know that you are going to talk to someone about the abuse as they may attempt to interfere in some way.  This could prevent you from getting help for yourself or helping to stop someone else being abused by the same person.  

 

It is the policy of the Catholic Church to always inform statutory authorities (Police and Social Services) that abuse has been alleged.  This is done in order to prevent further abuse from happening and to make sure that past abuse is properly dealt with.

 

I am worried that a child or vulnerable adult may be being harmed by someone in a family or household.  What should I do?

 

Report the matter to the Police or local Social Services Department whose telephone number will be in your local phone book or on a Police or Local Authority website.

 

I am worried that a child or vulnerable adult may be being abused by a member of the Clergy or Religious, or by an employee or volunteer within the Catholic Church.  What should I do?

 

Immediately inform the Local Safeguarding Representative for your parish.  If you are unable to contact them, inform the Safeguarding Co-ordinator for your Diocese or Religious Congregation.  Details of the Safeguarding team based in your diocese can be found via the relevant Diocesan website available under the "Links" page of this website. 

 

What will happen when I inform someone that a child or vulnerable adult is being abused by someone working for the Church?

 

It is the policy of the Catholic Church in England and Wales to ensure that all allegations of abuse are referred immediately to the Police and Social Services Departments who are responsible for investigating those allegations.  We do this in the interests of the vulnerable to make sure that all information available is shared with those with the legal responsibility and professional training to investigate and also to ensure that there can be no possible suspicion of a cover-up by the Church.  In cases where the Statutory Authorities decide that they will not, or cannot investigate, but concerns remain about the safety of children and young people or vulnerable adults, enquiries will be made by those with responsibility for safeguarding within the Church.  

 

In all cases, the safety and welfare of the vulnerable is the first consideration.  Where allegations of abuse are made, it is the policy of the Church to remove the person accused from any role that brings them into contact with the vulnerable, while investigations or enquiries are going on, in order to find out what is the best course of action to take to protect the vulnerable in our communities 

 

What about confidentiality?
 
All information connected with a safeguarding matter is confidential between the agencies working together to protect children, young people and vulnerable adults.  No information is shared with any person who does not need to know it for the purposes of protecting the vulnerable.
 
When the Church is told about abuse, the victim is supported to tell the Police and Social Services what has happened.  The reason for sharing information with the Statutory Authorities is to prevent further abuse and to try to make sure that something is done about the abuse that is alleged to have happened.  If the person who has suffered abuse does not want to tell, or cannot tell the Police or Social Services themselves, the Church has a duty to do so for the reasons given above. 
 
An abuser does not have an automatic right to access information that is held about him or her.  The Church will not, for example, let an abuser know who has made allegations about them. 

 

 What happens to people working in the Church who are accused of abuse?
 
All concerns and allegations are taken seriously by the Church, whether they relate to Clergy, Religious, lay employees, officials or volunteers.  The precise circumstances differ from case to case, but the following information gives an indication of what happens when an allegation is made. 

 

·        After consultation with Police and Social Services, if the person accused of abuse is a member of the Clergy or a Religious Congregation, or is a paid worker or a volunteer, that person will be removed from the role that brings them into contact with children, young people and vulnerable adults.  It is important to acknowledge that these actions are taken without prejudice and do not automatically indicate that a person accused of abuse is guilty.  Such actions are precautions.  Final judgements are made following the completion of enquiries.  It is possible that someone accused of abuse may be reintegrated to their role, depending on the circumstances of the case.

 

·        Information about alleged abuse is shared with the Police and Social Services as they have a statutory responsibility to investigate abuse allegations. 

 

·        Enquiries will be made to find out if there is evidence to support the allegation.  Sometimes people accused of abuse are arrested and after full investigations, some may be prosecuted. 

 

·        The Church has a responsibility towards all of its members and will consider what support a person accused of abuse may need. 

 

·        In seeking to meet the support needs of people accused of abuse, the Church will strive to minimise risks to others and will use a written agreement called a "Covenant of Care" to make clear what conditions and restrictions apply to the accused person, as well as what support will be made available. 

 

·        In the extremely rare cases where the allegation was malicious, an accused person can expect this to be publicly acknowledged to set the record straight. 

 

What if the person accused of abuse is dead?

 

Even if information about abuse in a Church setting relates to an accused person who is dead, the Church will take this seriously and follow it up.  It is still important for such information to be shared with Police and Social Services as it could be relevant to other enquiries. 

 

The Church also has a responsibility to respond to the support needs of anyone who has been abused as it may be possible to help them. 

 

How can people who have abused within the Church be prevented from abusing in other organisations?

 

When the Church receives information that someone has abused a vulnerable person within a Church setting, it has responsibility to help prevent that person from abusing in other organisations.  The Church will make sure that Police and Social Services are informed about alleged abuse.  In some cases, abusers will be prosecuted. 

 

In every circumstance permitted by law, the Church refers names of people accused of abuse within a Church setting to the Disclosure and Barring Service.  Volunteers as well as employees and office holders are reported in circumstances where the "employer" has dismissed a person, would have considered dismissing him or her, or has transferred him or her to a post away from vulnerable people as a result of allegations made.

 

When someone applies for a job or volunteer position working with vulnerable groups, the organisation that is recruiting must make appropriate checks through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, formerly CRB) before a person can be appointed. 

 

What does the Catholic Church do to prevent abuse from taking place?

 

The Catholic Church regards prevention as the top priority and has policies and practices to minimise the opportunity for abuse.

 

The National Policy for Creating a Safe Environment for Vulnerable People in the Catholic Church in England & Wales, (available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 4.1) contains detailed guidance based on the principles of "Safe From Harm": A Code of Practice for Safeguarding the Welfare of Children in Voluntary Organisations in England and Wales" (Home Office, 1993) and provides the policy statements, a section on choosing employees and volunteers, training and managing them and managing the work of the organisation. 

 

In addition to this policy, all those working with children and young people and those working with vulnerable adults are required to undergo Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Disclosures through CSAS, which acts as a Registered Body.  The Policy and Procedure Safer Recruitment and Selection including DBS Checks (available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 4.2) describes the process by which this is undertaken and the requirements of recruitment and selection under the DBS system for those who need Disclosures. 

 

How can the Church stop people who want to abuse children or vulnerable adults from joining in activities that give them access to vulnerable individuals or groups?

 

The Church has policies and procedures that offer protection to children, young people and vulnerable adults; these include standards for safe recruitment to paid and unpaid posts.  There are job or role descriptions with clear roles and responsibilities, application forms for roles or posts, a requirement for written references, interviews of candidates and processing of DBS Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.  All of these play a part in ensuring the selection of people who are safe to work in the Church. 

 

For each Diocese or Religious Congregation there is a Safeguarding Coordinator.  In parishes and Religious Orders there are also Local Safeguarding Representatives.  These posts exist to make sure that the Church's national safeguarding policies and procedures are implemented at local level. 

 

The Church has also developed policies and procedures that offer guidance to Clergy and Religious and paid and volunteer workers for example, about appropriate conduct when working with children or running activities for them or other vulnerable groups, (the National Policy for Creating a Safe Environment for Vulnerable People in the Catholic Church in England & Wales, available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 4.1).  This indicates standards that are expected and acts as a deterrent to people who do not wish to uphold them.  There is a Code of Conduct for adults involved in contact with children, young people and vulnerable adults that can be displayed publicly (see Section A of the policy). 

 

The National Procedure for how to Respond to Concerns & Allegations (available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 2) contains measures to ensure removal of people who are the subject of allegations from posts or roles or to restrict their activities so as to ensure that they have no unsupervised access to vulnerable people pending the outcome of investigations and enquiries.  These steps are taken as a precaution and do not mean that the person is believed at that time to be guilty of the alleged abuse.  Long term removal from ministry is an option and is used in appropriate circumstances. 

 

There is a National Policy for Independent Risk Assessment (available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 4.5) which sets standards and provides a basis on which the Church can make informed decisions about an individual's access to vulnerable people in Church settings or roles.  Risk assessments are also used to help formulate an appropriate plan to manage any identified risks. 

 

All Catholics have a right to receive the Sacraments and participate in the life of the Church.  However, for those who are known to present a risk to others, it is necessary to ensure that these rights do not interfere with the safety of others.  The national policy which frames the Church's commitment to supporting victims of abuse and people accused of abuse (the National Policy for the Support of Those Affected by Allegations of Abuse Within a Church Setting, available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 2.5) provides guidance on how to manage the needs of the accused to continue to practice their faith as members of the Church whilst also ensuring that protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults is the foremost consideration.  This policy contains a structure for a "Covenant of Care" that is used to make clear what restrictions are being imposed to protect children, young people and vulnerable adults. 

 

The Church has a National Policy on Testimonials of Suitability & Supply Clergy (available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 4.8) that applies to Clergy and Religious seeking to do supply work.  This policy also covers priests and religious entering this country from abroad and aims to screen people seeking to work here so that any concerns are identified before they arrive.  Entry will not be allowed if references are not satisfactory. 

 

How does the Church support those who have suffered abuse? 

 

In the past there have been people who experienced abuse by Church personnel and who found the response of the Church to be inadequate and uncaring.  The Church is committed to continuing to learn how to respond in a supportive and healing way to the needs of those who have suffered abuse. 

 

The Church has a National Policy for the Support of Those Affected by Allegations of Abuse Within a Church Setting, available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 2.5.  This policy embodies the pastoral responsibility of the Church towards those affected by abuse and seeks to ensure that the support needs of all those affected by abuse are effectively addressed. 

 

What support is provided to those accused of abuse who are Clergy or Religious?

 

The Church's policy " Support of Those Affected by Allegations of Abuse Within a Church Setting”, available from www.csasprocedures.uk.net, section 2.5. includes guidance on supporting Clergy and Religious. 

 

The Bishop or Religious Leader is responsible for pastoral care for the accused.  The Church will appoint a Support Facilitator.  Those accused of abuse will receive support using the Covenant of Care for Clergy and Religious which is contained in the Church’s policy. This is a written agreement which ensures that a Support Facilitator offers advice about sources of help; access to legal or Canonical representation; emotional, spiritual or practical support; regular time to meet and information about safeguarding concerns. 

 

 

 

DBS Disclosure & Barring Service Disclosures (formerly known as CRB) FAQs:

 

CSAS is a Registered Body of the DBS and adheres to DBS Code of Practice.  The National Policies & Procedures from www.csasprocedures.uk.net used within the Catholic Church of England & Wales, have been approved by the DBS.    

 

Catholic Church specific FAQs -

 

How do I obtain a DBS Disclosure application form for a role in the Church? 

 

Please refer to your Local Safeguarding representative in your parish or Religious Order; your local Safeguarding office or the person responsible for the recruiting of that post.

 

We have a priest who is also working as a Head Teacher at a private school in the area.  Should we do a DBS check?

 

As of 17th June 2013, the DBS launched the Applicant Only or Single Certificate and also the Online Update Service which enables the individual to register online and attach the Disclosure (obtained from 17th June 2013 onwards only).  This can allow that Certificate to be used for similar roles working with the same workforce, in the same type of work that requires the same level of Disclosure.  If a Disclosure was obtained prior to 17th June 2013, there was no DBS managed portability service which means that Disclosures obtained via another Registered Body are not accepted by the Catholic Church of England & Wales.  Therefore a DBS Disclosure would be required for the Church role.

 

We have a volunteer carrying out a number of functions within our parish and therefore are unsure what the job title on the Disclosure application should state?

 

For volunteers working with children, the role title should state "Child Workforce” on the top line and “Church Ministry” on the 2nd line; for volunteers working with adults, the role title should state “Adult Workforce”  "Church Ministry” and for volunteers working with both groups, the role title should state "Child and Adult Workforce” and “Church Ministry ".

No reference to the voluntary status of the role should appear in the role title field.  The Counter-Signatory will ensure that the "Volunteer" box on the rear page of the Disclosure application is marked accordingly.

 

We have a volunteer, previously DBS checked via another Diocese, who will be taking up a post in our Diocese - should we DBS check them again?

 

Check that the previously completed DBS Disclosure was at an Enhanced level for the role they will be undertaking in your Diocese.  Compare the duties of the role they will be performing for you against the role they were previously DBS checked.  If the latest role is one of greater responsibility or requires an Enhanced check and the previous check was Standard, then a new DBS Disclosure will be required.

 

Additionally if the previous DBS check was completed over 12 months ago, a new check can be requested or if the individual was checked against children or adults and will now be working with the other group, a new check will be necessary.

 

The National Database should be referred to in order to clarify the above information and identity documentation should be rechecked.

 

We have a volunteer who is a retired teacher.  They had a DBS check done in 2003 - do we need a new Disclosure?

 

Yes.  As the original Disclosure was obtained via another Registered Body (see question above re Head Teacher) and CSAS does not accept "ported" Disclosures.  Also the Disclosure is dated beyond 12 months (see question above).

 

Can we store the Safeguarding Self Declaration (previously known as a Confidential Declaration Form or CDF) on an individual's personnel file?

 

No.  Disclosure information should never be kept on an applicant's personnel file.  The self disclosed information is of equal sensitivity to the DBS information and should be stored in the Safeguarding office or with Safeguarding Coordinators in accordance with the Safe Storage, Handling & Retention Policy as per DBS Code of Practice.  Only those entitled to see the information for the purposes of doing their job should have access to it.

 

What is the minimum age of an applicant for a DBS check to be carried out?

 

Within the Catholic Church of England & Wales, a DBS check should not be carried out on an individual less than 18 years of age.  The rationale for this is that it is not deemed appropriate for a person under 18 years to be in a position of responsibility with children, young people or vulnerable adults.

 

In regulated Care Homes, please note that CSCI (the regulator for the Care sector in England – CSW for Wales) requirements supersede CSAS policies therefore it may be that a worker aged 16 years or 17 years of age would be required to be DBS checked for a role in a regulated Care Home setting.

 

 

Legislation FAQs -

 

Are these Disclosures an invasion of civil liberties?

 

No.  Criminal record checks have been made for many years - principally for the protection of children, various licensing purposes and national security.  The new arrangements enable this to continue but on a wider scale, allowing more organisations in both the voluntary and private sector to make similar checks.

 

Disclosure does not breach civil liberties, as an applicant must consent to making an application in the first instance. 

 

Do I have the right to see personal data that the DBS holds about me?

 

Yes.  Please refer to the DBS website for further information on this: www.gov.uk.

 

What considerations have been given to the Human Rights Act with regard to Disclosures?

 

The Home Office has given due & full consideration to the Human Rights Act in framing this legislation.  Disclosure is a fully consensual process, with the applicant agreeing to and applying for the check.  The applicant is as of 17th June 2013 the ONLY recipient of the Disclosure.  There is always a balance between the rights of the individual to privacy and the rights of the vulnerable to be protected from harm.

 

What consideration has been given to the Data Protection Act?

 

Full details concerning the Data Protection Act and DBS Disclosures can be located on the DBS website available from www.gov.uk.

 

What is the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974?

 

Full information regarding this Act, can be located on the DBS website available from www.gov.uk.

 

What is "Portability"?

 

This is the term given to the  re-use of a Disclosure by various organisations.  Full details about portability as of 17th June 2013 (when the new Online Update service was launched) can be located on the DBS website available from www.gov.uk.

 

 

DBS Process -

 

How does the Disclosure process work?

 

Full details of the process can be found on the DBS website, available from www.gov.uk

 

What is an Enhanced Disclosure?

 

Enhanced Check or Enhanced Disclosure:  From September 2012, this level of check relates to those working in “regulated activity” as defined within the Protection of Freedoms Act. 

 

Full explanatory details regarding what constitutes Regulated Activity according to current legislation can be found in chapter 4.2 of the online procedures manual www.csasprocedures.uk.net

 

Completing the DBS Application Form -



What if I have a criminal record that may not be relevant to the position for which I am applying?

 

Safeguards and guidelines have been introduced to ensure that conviction information is not misused and that ex-offenders are not treated unfairly.  Ex-offenders will retain the protection afforded by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.  The Code of Practice for Registered Persons and other recipients of Disclosure information will govern Registered Bodies conduct and prevent abuse of the system.

 

Will a Disclosure be necessary before applying for a job?

 

Employers and volunteering organisations should only ask the person who has been offered the post to apply for a Disclosure.

 

Who will the Disclosure be sent to?

 

A Disclosure Certificate is sent as of 17th June 2013 to the applicant only.

 

How long is a Disclosure valid for?

 

Each Disclosure will contain the date the Disclosure was printed.  Disclosures do not carry a pre-determined period of validity because a conviction or other matter could be recorded against the subject of the Disclosure at any time after it is issued.  Organisations are advised to make recruitment decisions as soon as possible after receiving their copy of the Disclosure.

 

 

Is there a process to query the Disclosure if the information is incorrect?

 

There is a proper process to follow if the content of the Disclosure is inaccurate.  Please refer to the DBS by phone or via their website for further details.

 

Is only criminal record information available from the DBS?

 

No.  The DBS also acts as the central access point for checks of the Barred lists (with effect from December 2012)

 

Can information be passed between recruiters within a Registered Body?

 

Yes.  Where an applicant moves between jobs within one Registered Body, information revealed by a Disclosure may be passed onto the individual who is seeking to recruit the applicant. 

 

What happens if a Counter-Signatory, if after applying to the DBS, is found to be unsuitable?

 

If a person is considered unsuitable to hold the position of Counter-Signatory, the DBS will inform the Lead Counter-Signatory of the organisation that the application has been rejected and they will be asked to nominate another Counter-Signatory.

 

 

Volunteers -

 

My organisation employs paid employees and volunteers, are Disclosures free of charge for all of them?

 

No.  Only those staff who meet the criteria for being a volunteer and whose regular duties qualify for a Disclosure; are eligible for a free of charge Disclosure.

 

How do I know if my volunteers are eligible for free Disclosures?

 

There is a specific definition of a Volunteer within the Police Act 1997, this can be found on the DBS website and is also made reference to within the National Policies which can be found at http://www.csasprocedures.uk.net/

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