Difficult times often bring out the best in people and there has been a surge in community volunteering initiatives since the pandemic. However, keeping people safe and ensuring that robust safer recruitment procedures are implemented must always be a priority and churches should apply the same standard of safeguarding in this area.
What does safer recruitment involve?
- providing a job description and a person specification
- completing an application form (informal if preferred)
- completing a self-declaration of criminal history
- a face-to-face interview (or informal interview)
- checking references
- completing a DBS check
- having a trial period.
Which roles are eligible for DBS checks?
Please see the General Assembly Paper T6 for information on URC roles eligible for a criminal record check.
Your church should also:
- Take advice from DDC (our DBS checking provider) or Belinda Herbert if unsure about DBS checks.
- Revisit your volunteer role descriptions and risk assess volunteering activities for potential for harm.
- Continue to apply for DBS checks on roles that require them and ensure that Workers do not start until a satisfactory clearance is received.
- Review your lone working policy and ensure protections are in place for volunteers if they are in the building alone or supporting people in the community on their own.
- Consider enrolling new Workers on the online safeguarding training for anyone undertaking a new role.
- Remember that Safer Recruitment is more than a DBS check!
Please ensure that you keep all records related to a person’s safer recruitment and store them confidentially.