There are an estimate 10 million people in the UK who have some sort of criminal record, ranging from serious career criminals with a string of convictions to someone who shoplifted as a teenager and has stayed out of trouble ever since. Many of us never think about past misdemeanours or minor brushes with the Police until they are asked to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for a new job which involves working with vulnerable groups such as children. A criminal record doesn’t automatically rule you out from working in these types of jobs, and each case is considered on its merits by the employer. A minority of people will be in for a surprise when they are issued with their DBS certificate only to see inaccurate or completely wrong information listed. How does this happen and how can it be put right?
It can seem strange to think of fostering as a career, and it’s certainly true that most people who go into this line of work are doing it for reasons other than the money. The role of a foster carer is to look after other people’s children of all ages and circumstances. Sometimes, foster care arrangements are within the family, such as an aunt or grandparent looking after a nephew or grandchild, but often a foster carer has no blood relationship with the child or children they are looking after. Some foster carers look after children for short periods while a parent is in hospital or temporarily unable to care for their child, and others have children for much longer periods.
Football has been in the news for all the wrong reasons recently, with allegations that coaches of junior teams in the past managed to abuse children without the authorities doing anything about it. Since the first adults came forward in November to tell their stories, hundreds more have told Police across the UK about their experiences, and investigations are ongoing. The one question most people have is about how on earth this situation was allowed to happen.
The Police forces responsible for carrying out criminal record checks on people who have applied to work or volunteer with children or other vulnerable people have hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons when it emerged that some people are waiting for a staggering eight months for the applications to be processed.
It’s one of the biggest costs associated with having a baby – the costs of getting someone to care for your children when maternity leave Is over and you must go back to work. There are many options for childcare, and the right one for you will depend on your individual circumstances and how many children you have.
Around 15 million people in the UK – or one in four of the population – volunteer on a regular monthly basis. Voluntary roles vary hugely, from home based roles answering email enquiries or working on a phone helpline, to regular shifts in charity shops or delivering services to all groups in society. Volunteering doesn’t have to mean giving up huge amounts of your time either as most modern charities have flexible programmes which allow people of any age and circumstance to help them out. If one of your New Year’s Resolutions for 2017 is to undertake volunteering, then you’ll be pleased to discover there are many advantages to doing so.
One of the things which differentiates the court system in England and Wales from courts around the world are the Magistrates Courts. This court is the first tier of the court system. Magistrates deal with minor crimes and misdemeanours, and are the first people to hear more serious courses which are then referred on to Crown Courts. Unlike judges in the higher courts, magistrates aren’t members of the legal profession, and are usually specially trained members of the public who work as a magistrate on a part time basis. If you’re looking for an unusual and interesting way to get involved in the community, then could training as a magistrate be for you?
It’s perhaps not one of the most festive adverts, but you may have seen the advert on TV about Father Christmas getting stuck in a chimney while delivering presents and being thankful that Mrs Claus has had the forethought to take out a Power of Attorney which allows her to deal with unexpected events. It’s a clever way of making a very important point – that whatever our age and medical condition, making a Power of Attorney agreement is something we should be considering.
Driving a black cab or mini cab in the UK has been a popular way of earning a wage for decades. It’s flexible, can be lucrative if you are prepared to work at weekends or through the night, and can usually be done on either a part time or full time basis. Although rules have always been strict about who can get a licence to drive a traditional black cab (also sometimes known as a Hackney cab), over recent years’ rules have also been tightened up on the people who apply to drive a mini cab, which is sometimes more formally referred to as a private hire vehicle.
If you’re in the jobs market, you’ll often see some vacancies advertised as needing a DBS check, or stating that the applicant must undergo police checks before starting the position. In the UK, not all employers are allowed to carry out checks on new employees. The law is quite strict regarding which types of jobs require this sort of check to be carried out. Although many application forms will ask whether the person applying for the job has any criminal convictions, this is not the same as asking someone to complete a check through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), or equivalent bodies in Northern Ireland and Scotland.