A recent move by authorities in Guildford could drastically change the way in which taxis operate in the borough, and how drivers are licenced. New requirements being introduced mean that drivers will undergo a DBS check twice a year, following guidance set out by the Department of Transport. The council will also require all licenced black cabs and minicabs to be fitted with CCTV equipment, and there will be in addition extra training and vetting for both people running private hire companies, and their staff. More stringent rules about emissions and pollution standards should also ensure that the cabs on the road are cleaner and less polluting than ever to.
One of the most important concepts in DBS checking is whether or not the occupation is exempt, or whether the employer is allowed to ask exempted questions. This topic is related to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, and it might affect anyone who has had a brush with the law – however minor – in the past. It’s not as complicated as it might initially appear.
Anything between a quarter and a third of adult men in the UK have a criminal conviction. In most cases these are for very minor issues, and a “one-off” rather than a pattern of wider offending. Many people who do have a criminal record worry about how it will affect their job prospects going forward. Do you really have to still tell employers about a teenage shoplifting conviction when you’re in your 40s? Unfortunately, the answer’s not as straightforward as you might think.
One of Birmingham’s most senior police officers is leading calls for new regulation on who can run hostels for tenants who are often vulnerable.
Unlike other forms of residential care, where owners and staff require enhanced disclosures, people who operate multi-occupancy housing for other vulnerable tenants require no checks at all. Calling on the government to close this loophole in the legislation, Chief Superintendent Steve Graham raised concerns that the current situation made it all too easy for criminals to get involved in purchasing and running hostel-style accommodation, with the aim of exploiting the vulnerable.
Recent research by Disclosure Scotland – the organisation which provides disclosure checks north of the border – has revealed that during the pandemic, 74% of jobseekers have been scammed into applying for jobs which are not genuine. Forbes magazine goes further, claiming that for every genuine job vacancy there are as many as 60 scam postings. How do you avoid becoming one of the scam victims?
Police checks are a standard part of applying for many positions in the UK and most job seekers are aware that they will have to go through some checking process when applying for positions involving a degree of responsibility or to work with children or vulnerable adults. There is a lot of confusion around the process though, and part of the problem is that the jargon and terminology changes on a regular basis. So, what exactly is the difference between a CRB check and a DBS check?
The SIA is the security industry body, set up 20 years ago to improve standards, and turn an industry with a poor reputation into something altogether more professional. The SIA covers not only door supervisors, but also a range of associated industries such as cash in transit, security guarding and people managing and operating CCTV systems. Anyone wishing to work in one of these roles will need a SIA licence, which involves a DBS check on criminal records. So, does this mean that people with a conviction in their past are wasting their time applying?
Most workers and employers are aware that a DBS check involves a criminal records search, and that it is essential for many jobs. These checks are carried out by the Disclosure and Barring Service though, which is a government organisation independent of the police. There are, however, some circumstances in which a DBS check will be looked over by a police officer too.
One of the criticisms of government guidance across the board is that it is too general, and that it’s hard to find guidance which is tailored to individual circumstances. This is especially the case with DBS and disclosure checking guidance, and to be fair to the government, it would be impossible to come up with a set of guidance which takes into account every conceivable set of circumstances. Recently however the DBS has working with a body called Strengthening Faith Institutions (SFI) to create DBS guidance aimed at a range of religious groups.
The current job market is competitive and set to become ever more so as the economy emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic. As the market becomes flooded with more people looking for a job, the inevitable consequence for employers is a deluge of people applying for every position. And from an applicant’s point of view, the temptation to exaggerate experience or tweak qualifications to be the perfect candidate is obvious. Many companies are already carrying out background verification and screening, and this is even more important when you have a large number of applicants. Luckily, there is technology on hand to help make the process a lot easier.