From 1 December 2012 the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) will carry out the functions previously undertaken by the Criminal Records Bureau and the Independent Safeguarding Authority. The primary role of DBS is to help employers in England and Wales make safer recruitment decisions and prevent unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups including children. This follows a Coalition commitment to scale back the Vetting and Barring Scheme and the criminal records regime to common sense levels.
The DBS is a non-departmental public body sponsored by the Home Office which has certain statutory responsibilities and is accountable to parliament. This means that the DBS operates within defined areas of autonomy and operational discretion. However, its effectiveness and efficiencies are closely scrutinised by ministers, officials and stakeholders.
Last August, in order to help employers and voluntary organisations, the Department published ‘Regulated Activity - Adults’ which describes the activities that the Disclosure and Barring Service can bar people from. which describes the activities that the Disclosure and Barring Service can bar people from.