The Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) has published “myth buster” guidance in relation to the new Vetting and Barring Scheme.
The move follows widespread media coverage – and public confusion – in Autumn 2009 about when people have to register with the Independent Safeguarding Authority under the scheme, which is designed to ensure children and vulnerable adults are properly safeguarded.
The DCSF subsequently accepted all the recommendations made by Sir Roger Singleton, chairman of the ISA, which saw the number of people required to register cut from 11m to 9-9.5m.
The DCSF said its aim “throughout has been to develop an approach which is proportionate, balanced and effective”.
According to the guidance, the scheme:
- does not apply where an arrangement is a family arrangement
- does not apply where an arrangement is made personally between friends, and is not on a commercial basis
- does not apply where an activity is not 'regulated activity', because it is not: an activity specified by the scheme; work for an organisation specified by the scheme; a post specified by the scheme; does not apply where an activity is an exception to the scheme.
Whether the scheme’s requirement to register with the ISA will apply depends in particular on two key principles: first, if an activity is arranged by an organisation (as opposed to being a private arrangement) and second, if that activity is ‘frequent or intensive’.
The guidance offers examples of when the scheme will not require an individual to register with the ISA. It also provides answers to frequently asked questions such as how ISA registration differs from a CRB disclosure and the cost of registration.
The DCSF promises that “even when ISA registration is required, joining the new scheme will be a simple, quick process”.