Disclosure and Barring checks are an essential part of the Church in Wales and its approach to safeguarding. This policy outlines those roles that require a DBS check in accordance with their role within the Church in Wales.
Recruiting the right people to work with children and adults who are experiencing, or at risk of abuse or neglect can be very difficult. It is vital that the Church in Wales follows safe recruitment procedures to ensure that they appoint appropriate people as clergy, employees or volunteers. It is a criminal offence for an individual who is barred from working with vulnerable groups to apply to work in regulated activity with that vulnerable group; it is also a criminal offence for an organisation to appoint a barred individual to a role which is regulated activity.
Good safeguarding practice means that those who work closely with children and or adults whom may be vulnerable due to experiencing, or at risk of experiencing abuse or neglect, have an enhanced DBS (criminal record check) check undertaken before they commence any risk activities. An enhanced DBS check is one which reveals spent convictions, cautions etc which are not filtered as well as those that are unspent and may include additional information held by the local police which they deem may reasonably be relevant for the position applied for. An enhanced DBS check can come with or without barring information dependent on whether the role is in regulated activity.
The Church in Wales requires all clergy (stipendiary and non-stipendiary, licensed and PTO) to undertake an Enhanced level check with barred lists for both children and adults.
In addition, the Church in Wales requires that each PCC undertakes Enhanced DBS checks (without barred lists) on a minimum of 3 PCC members, and these should usually include 2 Church Wardens. If your PCC members includes a safeguarding officer, this person should be included in the 3.
To find out whether a role requires a DBS check, and if so, what type and level of checks are required, please refer to the DBS eligibility guide and use the online eligibility tool.
A glossary of roles in the Church in Wales has been compiled. You can check this to see the types of checks normally associated with these roles. However, titles don’t always indicate the activities carried out, so you can only treat this guidance as indicative. Anyone requesting a DBS is required to complete a declaration form to show the justification for requesting the check against the activities to be undertaken by the role holder.
- Glossary of roles in the Church in Wales (Word)
- Flowchart – DBS check for roles working with children (PDF)
- Flowchart – DBS check for roles working with vulnerable adults (PDF)
“frequent “– 4 or more times a month
“intensive” – once a week or more
“overnight” – between 2am and 6am
“Children” are defined as under 18 years of age
“Adults at risk” are not defined by the DBS, but the Social Services and Wellbeing Act 2014 has given a definition of an adult at risk as someone who is:
- An adult who is experiencing or is at risk of abuse or neglect and has needs for care and support and as a result of those needs is unable to protect himself or herself against the abuse or neglect or the risk of it.
If these conditions form the basis of a decision not to check an employee or volunteer, it must be guaranteed that in all circumstances (illness, holiday etc), the activity will not be frequent or intensive or overnight.
Your Diocesan Safeguarding Officer and the Church in Wales’ DBS Admin Team can be contacted for further information about DBS checks.