If you’re involved in coaching, supervising or in any way assisting with an under-18s sports team, be that football, hockey or any other sport, it’s likely that that issue of obtaining a DBS check has come up.

There are consistent guidelines around safeguarding children, regardless of whether the work you do is voluntary or paid-for. It’s quite possible that if you work or volunteer directly with under- 18s then you may need to secure a DBS check. However, there are further regulations as to the level of check you will require, depending on the type of work you carry out.

If you are involved in teaching, training or in any way instructing an under-18 sports team then you may be required to obtain an Enhanced DBS check. The information included in an Enhanced check includes criminal convictions but also discloses any warnings, cautions or reprimands you may have received. It also includes any information that is held about you by your local police force.

The Enhanced DBS check is a thorough background check of any individual. However, there is a further check that applies to those working under-18s in the sporting world.

If someone is likely to be working frequently with under-18s and has sole supervisory care of a group then this person requires an Enhanced DBS check that includes a check of the Barred Lists, which detail whether an individual has been registered as unsuitable for working with children.

According to the Disclosure and Barring Service guidelines, frequent contact with children is defined as

  • Teaching or training work that is carried out by the same person, once a week or more
  • Intensive contact includes activity that takes place on 4 or more days in a 30 day period or includes overnight stays.

If anyone working in sport with under 18s has frequent or intensive contact with children then they will qualify for an Enhanced DBS check that includes Barred Lists search.

Anyone working in an administrative role in under-18s sporting associations, such as secretaries, treasurers or administrators may not be required to obtain a DBS check.

The decision to obtain DBS Checks on any individuals involved in an under 18 sports team is completely down to the organisation. Many like to complete DBS Checks on these individuals for best practice purposes, however there is no legal obligation to complete the checks.

If you think that you may be eligible for either an Enhanced DBS check or an Enhanced check that includes the barred lists, or you are responsible for organising a group of paid or voluntary coaches or trainers, then Personnel Checks is on hand to help you.

Call our friendly professional team on 01254 355688 or email us at [email protected] where one of our dedicated team of trained advisers will be happy to discuss any requirements you may have.


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