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Training and resources

Safer recruitment (DBS checks)

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) was established under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and merges the functions previously carried out by the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). The DBS is responsible for the following processes:

  • Disclosure – the DBS searches police records and, in relevant cases, barred list information, and then issues a DBS certificate to the applicant and employer to help them make an informed recruitment decision.
  • Referrals – Referrals are made to the DBS when an employer or an organisation, for example, a regulatory body, has concerns that a person has caused harm or poses a future risk of harm to vulnerable groups including children. In these circumstances the employer legally must or regulatory body may, make a referral to the DBS.
  • Barring – the DBS makes its decisions using barring decision-making processes specifically developed for this use and approved by the DBS Board. The barring decision-making processes for considering discretionary (non-automatic barring) cases have been developed to ensure all DBS decisions are fair, consistent and thorough.

Types of check you can request:

  • A basic check, which shows unspent convictions and conditional cautions
  • A standard check, which shows spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings
  • An enhanced check, which shows the same as a standard check plus any information held by local police that’s considered relevant to the role
  • An enhanced check with barred lists, which shows the same as an enhanced check plus whether the applicant is on the list of people barred from doing the role

For further information please visit the Disclosure and Barring Service website.