DBS Checks when working with Adults
Disclaimer: This is not legal advice. If you need help with making sure you are complying with the law, you should speak to a legal advisor.
Enhanced checks: Who is eligible?
Sometimes, a role within a faith centre will undertake activities with adults which mean that the role is eligible for either an enhanced DBS check, or an enhanced DBS check with adults’ Barred List check.
There are other additional activities with adults that allow for DBS checks which are higher than basic level, but they are unlikely to occur within a faith centre. Further information can be found on the DBS web page here.
Enhanced DBS checks with an adults’ Barred List check
For roles within faith centres, the main activities that will make a role eligible for an Enhanced DBS check with an adult’s Barred List check are as follows:
- Providing personal care made up of physical assistance or prompting and then supervising with eating, drinking, toileting, washing for adults who can’t decide to do this for themselves because of age, illness or disability
- Conveying adults to, from or between health care, personal care and/or social work services who can’t convey themselves because of their age, illness or disability
- Assisting an adult who can’t manage with the day-to-day running of their household relating to managing the adult’s cash, paying the adult’s bills or doing their shopping because of their age, illness or disability
These activities are known as ‘regulated activities’ and only need to be done once. A person who has day-to-day management of people undertaking these activities is also eligible for an Enhanced DBS check with an adults’ Barred List check.
For more information on regulated activity with adults, please see the DBS guidance leaflet
Enhanced DBS check without an adults’ Barred List check
The main activities that will make a role eligible for an Enhanced DBS check without an Adult’s Barred List check are as follows:
- assistance, advice or guidance wholly or mainly for certain adults (for example, a support group for people dealing with illness)
- conveying certain adults to and from the faith centre (for example, driving a minibus on behalf of the faith centre to enable people who would otherwise not be able to attend due to age, illness or disability)
- day-to-day management of people undertaking these activities
These activities will only be eligible when they are provided to adults who fall within certain groups which are set out in legislation.
For faith centres, the most likely groups that fall within this are adults:
- living in residential accommodation because of their care or nursing needs.
- living in accommodation provided because they are or have been a pupil in a residential special school
- living in sheltered housing
- in receipt of care or assistance at home because of their age, health or disability.
- in receipt of the activity because of their age, illness or disability
A full list as set out in the legislation can be found in Annex 1 of the DBS adult workforce guide (see paragraphs 9 & 10).
The person carrying out the activity must be doing it:
- at any time on more than three days in any period of 30 days; or
- at any time between 2 am and 6 am and the activity gives the person the opportunity to have face-to-face contact with the adult; or
- at least once a week on an ongoing basis.
For more information, or to discuss this in further detail, please contact SFI.
How do I apply for an Enhanced DBS check for my faith centre’s staff or volunteers?
- Ask SFI or an umbrella body for an application form. SFI can often subsidise the cost for DBS checks for Faith Centres in England.
- Give the form to the applicant to fill in.
- The applicant will return the completed form to you along with documents proving their identity.
- Send the completed application form to your umbrella body.
- DBS will send a certificate to the applicant. You must ask the applicant to show you the certificate so you can check it’s genuine.
What is regulated activity?
Regulated activity is work that a barred person must not do by law. A full list of regulated activities with children can be found here.
An organisation that carries out regulated activity with children is a regulated activity provider. As a regulated activity provider, you have a legal duty under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 to refer an individual to DBS where the relevant conditions are met. This means that you must inform DBS when there is a safeguarding concern. For more information on when and how to make a referral to DBS please go to the DBS website (Making a referral to DBS).