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Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006


Section 24: Monitoring

105.Subsection (1) sets out the criteria that must be satisfied for a person to be subject to monitoring in relation to a regulated activity. In particular, the person must have made a monitoring application. On a monitoring application being made the Secretary of State must make enquiries to obtain relevant information (defined in subsection (8)) which includes information about convictions and cautions and information from police forces that might be relevant in relation to the regulated activity.

106.Section 24 also enables the Secretary of State to set a fee to be paid by applicants for monitoring. It is intended that the Vetting and Barring Scheme will be funded from income from a flat fee to be paid once when applicants first apply to be monitored. The fee is to be waived in the case of volunteers who work with vulnerable groups.

Section 25: Monitoring: fees

107.Section 25 makes further provision relating to fees required to be paid under section 24(1)(d). During the first five years that monitoring is functioning, the Secretary of State will be able to take into account the costs of the Vetting and Barring Scheme over the whole of that period when setting the level of the monitoring fee. This will mean that he can set a fee that will not vary significantly over the first five years of the scheme, and that will enable the scheme to break even over the first five years. This is intended to avoid the risk of excessive fluctuations in the level of the fee that might have occurred in the early years if the fee had to provide income to meet the scheme’s costs in each year.

108.Subsections (2) and (3) ensure that in setting the fee the Secretary of State can take into account the cost of funding IBB and other expenditure incurred in connection with his functions under the Act. In other words, fees need not be limited to what is necessary to recoup expenditure incurred in connection with monitoring.

109.Subsection (3) is also intended to ensure that after the first five years, the fee will be set on the basis of meeting costs incurred each year.

Section 27: Prohibition of requirement to produce certain records

110.This section makes it an offence for employers and others to require an individual (or a third party) to produce the record of information given to an individual under section 24(4). It is also an offence to require the production of that record as a condition of providing or offering to provide goods, facilities or services to the public.

111.An exception is made from this offence for parents and other private employers.

Section 28 Independent monitor

112.This section provides a statutory basis for the current non-statutory monitoring arrangements relating to the disclosure of local police information by the Criminal Records Bureau under Part 5 of the Police Act 1997 and to the disclosure of information under section 24 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006.

113.The section provides for an “Independent Monitor” to be appointed by the Secretary of State, and to report to him, on matters connected with the disclosure or non-disclosure of information under certain provisions. The purpose of this review is to ensure compliance with Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Section 29: Part 5 of the Police Act 1997: code of practice

114.This section extends the scope of the code of practice issued under section 122 of Part 5 of the Police Act 1997 (“Part 5”) which governs the use of information provided to registered persons by the CRB. Registered persons are organisations which (being considered suitable to receive sensitive disclosure information) are registered with the CRB for the purpose of applying for disclosures of conviction information under Part 5, either in their own right or on behalf of others. A person who is not registered must apply for a disclosure via a registered person.

115.Section 29 extends the scope of the code of practice so as to include provisions relating to the carrying out of any function by a body or person registered with the CRB for the purpose of accessing the disclosure service under Part 5. The current scope of the code of practice as it relates to England and Wales is limited to the use of information provided to such bodies or persons.

116.The section also provides for a variety of sanctions for failure to comply with the code of practice. The proposed sanctions are equivalent to sanctions already contained in Part 5 (section 120A) for failure to comply with prescribed conditions of registration.

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