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Definitions and guidance

 

Roles that work with children but that are not in Regulated Activity

If an applicant is not in Regulated Activity but they supervise, teach, train, instruct and/or care for children, or provide advice/guidance on well-being or drive a vehicle only for children on more than one occasion then they are eligible for an enhanced DBS check but without a check of the barred lists. It is the expectation of charity regulators, and many insurance companies that you apply for a DBS check where the applicant’s role is legally eligible for one.

There is eligibility for an Enhanced check (WITH a check of the barred lists) where a person lives in a household of someone who is working in Regulated Activity with children and who carries out some/all work from that home. (This only applies if the member of the household has an opportunity for contact with the children – they are not in Regulated Activity but the barred list can still be checked. This is an exception to the rule.)

A worker will be able to have an enhanced check (without a check of the barred list) if they are a Trustee of a charity that works with children. In addition, someone who is supervising/managing workers who are eligible for an Enhanced DBS check will be eligible for a DBS check at the same level of those they are supervising/managing).

Roles that work with adults but are not in Regulated Activity

If an applicant is not in Regulated Activity but works with adults who may be vulnerable then it is possible they are still eligible for an enhanced DBS check but without a check of the barred lists. It is the expectation of charity regulators and many insurance companies that you apply for a DBS check where the applicant’s role is legally eligible for one.

The worker may still be able to have an enhanced check (without a check of the barred list) if they are working weekly, or four or more days in a 30 day period, or overnight with those who are receiving health or social care and they are giving any of the following:

  • care
  • supervision
  • treatment
  • therapy
  • advocacy
  • transportation
  • teaching
  • advice
  • guidance and/or assistance

in a group aimed at adults who need help because of their age, illness, disability or live in certain types of accommodation such as a prison, remand centre, residential care home etc. Workers employed in a care home who are not in Regulated Activity will be eligible for an Enhanced check. The worker will be able to have an enhanced check (without a check of the barred list) if they are a Trustee of a charity that works with adults at risk. In addition, someone who is supervising/managing workers who are eligible for an Enhanced DBS check will be eligible for a DBS check at the same level of those they are supervising/managing).

What are standard Disclosure checks?

A Standard Disclosure will contain details of any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings the applicant has, as long as they’re not protected by filtering rules.

If a role does not meet the criteria to request an Enhanced check it may still be possible to request a Standard Disclosure in certain circumstances. The majority of the organisations we work with would never need to process a Standard Disclosure however the most common reasons, we see them submitted are:

  • Positions in the financial sector that are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, the Prudential Regulatory Authority or the Bank of England, or organisations acting on their behalf. These are commonly referred to as being an approved person, a senior manager or carrying out a controlled function. FCA Controlled function. (Legislative wording 1).
  • Individuals working on the premises of a prison, a remand centre, a removal centre, a short-term holding facility, a detention centre, a Borstal institution or a young offender institution and members of boards of visitors. (Legislative wording 13) Some roles in these places can be eligible for an enhanced DBS check. Please check our online eligibility tool for more information.
  • Any work that relates to providing health services where that work means there is also contact with the patients (Legislative wording 14) Some roles in this category can be eligible for an enhanced DBS check. Please check our online eligibility tool for more information.
  • Any work for an adoption service, an adoption support agency, a voluntary adoption agency, a fostering service or a fostering agency where that work means that there is also contact with the children or access to sensitive or personal information about them. (Legislative Wording 16) This doesn’t include prospective foster or adoptive parents or their household members. Please check our online eligibility tool for more information. 

The full list of roles eligible for a Standard Disclosure can be viewed on the government website at (Standards_eligibility_guide_v1.0_051118.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk) If you ever feel your organisation may need to process a Standard Disclosure, call us on 0303 003 11 11 (option 1) to chat the role through in more detail. 

What are Basic Disclosure checks?

A Basic Disclosure involves a search of the Police National Computer (PNC) for details of all current convictions.  The disclosure will contain details of convictions and conditional cautions that are considered to be unspent under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.  (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/basic-checks )  
 
Basic Disclosures are useful where a role is not eligible for an Enhanced or Standard check but where the role requires (or publicly indicates) a certain level of trust by the church or organisation.  This could include roles such as worship leaders, those offering transport to/from events, administrators, welcomers, preachers, caretakers, refreshment team etc.  
 
Anyone can apply as long as they live or work in the UK (those living/working in Scotland will need to apply via Disclosure Scotland).  The DBS fee is £23.00 per check (no difference for paid or volunteer workers). 
 
A Basic Disclosure should never be used in place of an Enhanced Disclosure.

Definitions

Scenarios

A creche worker who physically assists young children with going to the toilet (on one occasion or more) would be in Regulated Activity.

A Sunday School worker would only be in a Regulated Activity if they work every week or more and are not always supervised; or if they are providing personal care to the children e.g. toileting. If this does not apply they would still be eligible for an enhanced DBS check without a check of the barred lists even if they are always supervised.

Purely administrative roles i.e. Church Administrator or Treasurer are NOT eligible for an Enhanced Disclosure (unless they are a Trustee) as they do not work directly with vulnerable groups. Additionally Enhanced Disclosures cannot be accessed for those who handle sensitive or confidential information (unless they are supervising those working in Regulated Activity).

A pastoral worker or befriender who visits housebound people and on occasions is asked by the homeowner to do some shopping or pay a bill on their behalf is engaging in Regulated Activity.

A worker who is part of a group of volunteers that drive / accompany church members to their GP surgery or hospital appointments is working in Regulated Activity.

A lunch club/foodbank or street outreach whose workers just serve food, drinks, or have a friendly chat with those they work with will not be in a Regulated Activity with adults unless they are giving professional counselling/health care or personal care to adults. They will qualify for Regulated Activity with children if they are advising/supervising/caring etc for children frequently or intensively on an unsupervised basis. If they are not in Regulated Activity but they do care for/supervise/give guidance/mentor children or vulnerable adults then they are likely to be eligible for an enhanced DBS check without a check of the barred lists - see additional notes above.

Prayer teams whose members pray with/for adults and children in a public area/town centre type setting are not in Regulated Activity nor do they qualify for an enhanced DBS check. If however, their job role includes praying with a child/children frequently or intensively in an unsupervised setting, this would be Regulated Activity.

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