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Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)


If you dismiss or remove a person from regulated activity (or may have done so had they not left) because they have harmed or posed a risk of harm to a child or vulnerable adult, then you have legal duty to refer the person to the DBS.

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) helps employers make safer recruitment decisions. There is a legal duty to make referrals which must be addressed to the DBS. You can contact the DBS Helpline on 01325 953 795 for information or advice about making a referral.

Making Safeguarding Referrals to the DBS

The DBS's role is to make barring decisions about people who are referred to it (usually following an employer's disciplinary process), with the possible consequence of the person being barred from working or volunteering with children and/or vulnerable adults. The DBS uses a fair, thorough and consistent process that ensures that the decision it reaches is proportionate and appropriate to the risk the person poses to children or vulnerable adults.

Useful links

Below are useful links for regulated activity providers and professionals and for the Referral form, factsheets and guidance.

An applicant's introduction to the decision making process for enhanced criminal record checks

To help employers and voluntary organisations, the Department of Health has published Regulated Activities that the Disclosure and Barring Service can bar people from.

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