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Explanatory Memorandum to Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups (Northern Ireland) Order 2007

Main Elements of the Order

9.The Order provides that:

  • There will be two aligned barred lists – one for those who are barred from working with children (the “children’s barred list”), and one for those who are barred from working with vulnerable adults (the “adults’ barred list”).

  • The Independent Barring Board (“the IBB”) established by the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 will maintain the children’s barred list and the adults’ barred list and will make decisions about whether an individual should be included in one or both barred lists.

  • There will be a right of appeal to the Care Tribunal against inclusion in a barred list, with the permission of the tribunal, on a point of law or on a finding of fact made by the IBB.

10.There will be four routes to inclusion on one or both of the barred lists:

  • Automatic inclusion on one or both of the barred lists as a result of receiving a caution or conviction for specified offences. The individual will not have a right to make representation or a right of appeal in these cases.

  • Automatic inclusion on one or both of the barred lists for certain specified offences. There will be a right to make representations and a right of appeal following inclusion.

  • Specified behaviour (the term “relevant conduct” is used in the Order) that leads to consideration for inclusion on one or both of the barred lists’. This includes, for example, conduct which harms a child in the case of the children’s barred list, or conduct which harms a vulnerable adult in the case of the adults’ barred list.

  • Risk of harm: where evidence suggests that an individual may present a risk of harm to children or vulnerable adults, this will lead to consideration for inclusion on one or both of the barred lists.

11.An individual who is included in the children’s barred list must not engage in regulated activity in relation to children. An individual who is included in the adults’ barred list must not engage in regulated activity in relation to vulnerable adults.

12.Broadly, regulated activity will cover a range of specified activities that provide an opportunity for certain close contact with children or vulnerable adults.

13.There will be a series of criminal offences to:

  • Prevent barred individuals from engaging in regulated activity in relation to children or vulnerable adults

  • Ensure that people permitted to engage in regulated activity in relation to children or vulnerable adults with the permission of a “regulated activity provider” are subject to monitoring

  • Ensure that relevant employers check whether an individual is barred or is subject to monitoring before engaging an individual in a regulated activity in relation to children or vulnerable adults

14.To become subject to monitoring an individual will need to make an application to the Secretary of State.

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