A criminal record check or CRB, now commonly referred to as a DBS Check, allows employers to examine the criminal histories of their employees through the Disclosure and Barring Service in England and Wales. Asking a candidate to apply for a DBS check is a standard part of many recruitment processes, and most job seekers are aware that there is a system which allows employers to look into their criminal records.
If you’ve applied for a new job, it can come as a bit of a shock when the recruiter casually drops into the conversation that they will be carrying out an employment screening process. Most of us have heard the term, and many of us think we know what it means. The concept of having your references checked for accuracy, or being asked to prove we hold certain qualifications is nothing new.
Most people are aware that having a criminal records check will reveal any convictions on their record. The confusion comes in around other information which the police might hold about you. Many people are arrested, questioned, and then released without charge. A record of that arrest will remain on the police national computer – but is this sort of thing disclosed on a records check?
In the wake of several scandals surrounding vetting and criminal records checking for police officers and civilian workers for the Metropolitan Police, London’s City Hall has expressed concerns about the limited vetting powers of the London Fire Brigade (LFB) for new recruits. Currently, the LFB can only conduct basic police checks through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks on new staff
The construction industry and Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks may not seem an obvious combination, but bringing in a process of DBS checks for construction workers can bring significant benefits. A DBS check, which was previously called a CRB check, is a way of looking into someone’s criminal record in England and Wales, with similar schemes operating in the other parts of the United Kingdom.
Going through the process of background checks in the UK, whether as a prospective employee or an employer, can be a complex process. There are lots of myths about background checks, which vary hugely between job positions. Many people think a background check is the same as a DBS or CRB check – there is some crossover between the two, but they are separate processes.
Over the past decade, many different schemes have sprung up to recommend tradespeople to work in our homes. All of the schemes differ in the way they check out who is allowed to register on their website. Some might not run any checks at all, and just list everyone who pays the fees. Others will require membership of a professional body or ask workers to apply for a DBS check, previously known as a CRB check.
Many young people may make mistakes or act impulsively without fully grasping the repercussions of their actions as teenagers, which lands them in the police cells overnight. Some will be released without any further actions, but many will be issued with an official police caution, or go through the court system and be convicted.
New proposals mean that door staff may be required to undergo enhanced checks with a barred list check, which is a more detailed level of checking than is required currently. The proposal suggests that the more detailed level of criminal records checking, though more expensive, is needed to improve standards in the industry.
At a recent council meeting, Wigan Council, close to the city of Manchester, has voted to introduce DBS checks for all councillors. A basic DBS check, which was previously known as a CRB check or Criminal Records Bureau check, looks into the current criminal record of an individual, and is often used as proof of good character or similar.