The DBS: 5 years of safeguarding

The Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) was founded 5 years ago and in celebrating their fifth anniversary in December 2017, vows to continue its vital role in safeguarding the public.

The DBS issues more than 4 million certificates every year, assisting employers in making suitability decisions when recruiting individuals. The DBS has barred more than 15,000 people from working in unsuitable positions with children or vulnerable adults.

Adele Downey, Chief Executive at the DBS commented:

“It is with great pride that I am able to reflect on what we have achieved over the past 5 years. I know that the work we have done and continue to do makes a real difference to people’s lives and helps keep them safe from harm.”

The DBS process and issue disclosure checks for England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. They also take great responsibility in maintaining the Child and Adults Barred lists. The DBS have seen a surge in demand over the previous 5 years with disclosure requests rising from 3.8m to 4.3m and barring cases increasing by 50%. Despite the rise in demand, the DBS have maintained their Customer Service Excellence Accreditation and have also gained a customer satisfaction rating of 89%.

Adele also added:

“Organisations are now more aware than ever of their safeguarding responsibilities. As an organisation committed to keeping people safe this is something we welcome. I am delighted that we continue to rise to the challenge of additional work volumes while still putting safeguarding at the heart of everything we do.”

The DBS have recently begun putting resources into getting a better understanding of the impact it has on the protection of children and vulnerable adults. The DBS have formed the Safeguarding, Strategy and Quality Directorate who will engage with stakeholders, look at policies and ensure the DBS is working effectively with safeguarding partners, having an impact on community safety.

This is seemingly a very exciting time for the DBS as they look to continually enhance the role they play in putting safeguarding at its heart and keeping the public safe.

“Moving forward we will look to use the expertise in our new directorate to research, engage and really understand today’s safeguarding landscape.” Finished Adele.

Personnel Checks have been an Umbrella Body for the Disclosure & Barring Service since it was formed in 2012 and before then have worked alongside the Criminal Records Bureau since 2001. We are extremely proud to act as an extension to the DBS, supporting the huge improvements and changes over the past 5 years.

Head of Operations & Customer Service, Alice Wrigley commented:

“The DBS play an integral role in keeping society safe and we are proud to work alongside them. We have worked with the DBS for many years now and see ourselves as an extension of their service.

The DBS have made some significant changes over the past 5 years to improve the customer experience.

We look forward to the future of DBS Checks and working alongside the DBS to ensure organisations can continue to make safer recruitment decisions.”


Find out more about our relationship with the DBS.


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