Safer recruitment

The vast majority of adults working/volunteering with children/young people are safe to do so. Unfortunately, some adults target children/young people in order to abuse them.  

Safer recruitment is an important aspect of protecting and keeping children/young people safe. It applies to all employees/volunteers who have contact with, and access to children/young people. They are also people who children/young people see as safe and trustworthy.  

Safer recruitment processes are critical in reducing harm that can be caused by staff/ volunteers. Because those already involved in abuse, or those disposed to do so, are extremely difficult to identify all employers must do their utmost, through good practice and vigilance, to make it as difficult as possible for abusers to obtain access to children. 

The recruitment process must be a consistent and thorough process of obtaining, collating, analysing and evaluating information from and about applicants. But even the most careful selection process cannot identify all those who may pose a risk to children. Once you have appointed someone and they have started working, you need to have robust supervision and appraisal arrangements in place to ensure their work is scrutinised, and any concerns that emerge are highlighted and responded to. Thinking about, and including issues safeguarding is important at every stage of the process. 

Employing staff and volunteers who are safe and who will be an asset to your organisation is a detailed process.  

If you have concerns about a child who may be at risk of abuse, harm or neglect, please contact Islington’s Children's Services Contact Team on 020 7527 7400. 

For information about allegations made against a member of staff/volunteer please refer to our Local Authority Designated Officer page. 

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

The DBS' role is to help prevent unsuitable people from working with children and adults at risk.  Referrals are made to the DBS when an employer or an organisation has concerns that a person has caused harm or poses a future risk of harm to children and/or adults at risk. 

The Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 has scaled back a number of safeguarding initiatives introduced under the Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.   The number of job roles/volunteering roles requiring DBS checks has decreased and also the proposals to register all those who work with children and/or adults at risk in a paid or unpaid capacity has been dropped. 

The DBS has a role in making independent barring decisions following referrals from employers or other organisations about individuals, usually following disciplinary processes, about their suitability to work with children and/or adults at risk.  Anyone barred by the DBS cannot work or volunteer with the group or groups from which they have been barred. 

Please see related links.