Criminal check prices frozen again

The cost of Criminal Records Bureau checks has been frozen for the second year running.

The checks, which provide criminal record information so that organisations can decide whether candidates are suitable for work involving children and vulnerable adults, are free for volunteers, but standard checks cost up to £36 for paid staff.

The CRB said it was able to hold the prices at last year’s level because it had made efficiency savings by improving its database management and customer services.

A spokesman for children’s charity NSPCC welcomed the news. He said: “About two-thirds of our 2,500 staff need CRB checks, so this has a significant impact on our organisation; we also empathise with smaller charities, for which it would be even more of a burden.”

He added this was even more welcome since it wasn’t known yet whether charities would have to pay for the checks carried out by the Independent Safeguarding Authority, the new scheme that will work with the Criminal Records Bureau from the autumn.

The CRB has dealt with more than 15 million checks since it started in 2002.

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