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Employing or working with someone who has a criminal record

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If you find out someone has a criminal record, either because they tell you or it's on their DBS check, you should conduct a risk assessment.

This should focus on whether their offences make them unsuitable for their role and/or what measures could be put in place to still enable them to do their role safely. This could include giving them extra supervision or limiting their duties.

You shouldn’t discriminate unfairly against people with a criminal record, and you should consider the context of it.

There are some key issues to consider.

  • What are the offences and how serious are they?
  • What were the circumstances of the offence?
  • How relevant are the offences to the role someone wants to do?
  • What are the risks to people who will be in contact with the person with a criminal record?
  • How old was the person when the offence was committed?
  • Was this a one-off or is there a pattern of offending?
  • What were the circumstances of the person at the time of the criminal offence and now?

You should have a discussion with the individual and record your decision. The safety of people in contact with your charity needs to be prioritised in an evidenced and risk-based way.

More information

This page was last reviewed for accuracy on 26 April 2023

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