Vetting and Barring Scheme Registration Halted
The Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) registration phase of the Vetting and Barring Scheme (VBS), which was due to commence on 26 July 2010, has been halted whilst the new coalition government undertakes a review of the scheme.
Theresa May, Home Secretary states: ‘the Government has made clear its intention to bring the criminal records and vetting and barring regimes back to common sense levels. Until this remodelling has taken place, we have decided to maintain those aspects of the new Scheme which are already in place, but not to introduce further elements’.
As a result, no one will be able to register with the ISA until further notice from the government.
What parts of the scheme remain in place?
-You are still legally obliged to refer information to ISA if you have removed an individual from ‘regulated activity’ because they have harmed or there is a risk of harm to a member of a vulnerable group.
-You must not knowingly employ a barred person in regulated activity.
-The two new barred lists will continue to be administered by ISA and can be checked through an enhanced AccessNI disclosure (existing AccessNI requirements and eligibility criteria will remain).
What will still change?
– A new ‘AccessNI Application form’ is available now from AccessNI web site www.accessni.gov.uk (but you can only start to use the new form from the 14th July 2010 however there will be sections relating to ISA that will no longer be mandatory parts of the form). AccessNI will not begin processing these forms until the 26th July.
-AccessNI will not process any applications made on the current form if they are received after 9th July 2010.
What should you do?
– Ensure you and your members understand your current responsibilities under the Vetting and Barring Scheme:
– understand what ‘regulated activity’ is;
– understand who is a ‘regulated activity provider’;
– understand the duty to refer a person to ISA;
– ensure you are clear who is responsible for making referrals in your organisation.
-Train yourself and your members on filling in the new AccessNI Application form.
– Wait for further updates on the scope of the review and if/when people need to register.
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