If you haven’t completed any checks on a volunteer, it is your statutory duty to ensure that they do not engage in regulated activity or be left unsupervised.


Unsupervised

If an unsupervised volunteer who is new to their duties engages in regulated activity regularly, it is your statutory duty to obtain an enhanced DBS certificate including barred list information.

Existing unsupervised volunteers in regulated activity do not have to be re-checked if they have already had a DBS check including barred list information.

You may, if you have concerns about a volunteer, conduct a repeat DBS check including barred list information.

Your checklist:

  1. If new to role, obtain enhanced DBS certificate including barred list

  2. If you have concerns about existing member, conduct repeat DBS check including barred list


Supervised

Supervised volunteers are not considered to be engaged in regulated activity, so employers are not legally permitted to request barred list information on such individuals.

You may, however, obtain an enhanced DBS certificate not including barred list information, for supervised volunteers (i.e. those who are not engaging in regulated activity).

If you choose to obtain one, you should use your professional judgement and undertake a risk assessment, in order to consider:

  • The nature of work with children

  • What you, and your institution, know as a whole about the volunteer, including formal and informal information offered by members of staff, parents, and other volunteers

  • Whether the volunteer engages in other employment or undertakes voluntary activities where referees can advise on suitability

  • Whether the role is eligible for an enhanced DBS check

If you undertake a risk assessment, you should record details of such.

On SCR Tracker, you can choose to upload such documentation to the bottom of the volunteer’s profile.

Your checklist:

  1. If you choose to obtain enhanced DBS certificate for a supervised volunteer, then you must use judgement and do a risk assessment — but you must not do barred list check.


How do I know if the volunteer is supervised or unsupervised?

It is for your institution to determine whether a volunteer is considered supervised or unsupervised. To consider a volunteer “supervised”, the supervision must be:

  • By a person who is in regulated activity, and

  • Regular and day to day, and

  • “reasonable in all the circumstances to ensure the protection of children.”

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