Vetting and barring scheme will not put volunteers off, says report

Sir Roger Singleton says people are unlikely to be deterred by bureaucracy

The new vetting and barring scheme will not put people off volunteering, the body running the system has concluded.

Sir Roger Singleton, chair of the Independent Safeguarding Authority, was asked in September by Ed Balls, the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, to produce a report on the scheme after concerns were raised that the new system would deter people from volunteering.

Singleton's report, Drawing the Line, published yesterday, says he is "puzzled" by the claim that the bureaucracy involved in registering for checks will put people off volunteering.

"I can understand that the need to process a large number of registrations of new volunteers will create extra work for some organisations, but the process for individuals is straightforward," the report says.

Volunteers are far more likely to be deterred by other factors such as lack of time, lack of skills or experience and feeling that their efforts are not appreciated, it says.

The report also confirms that people whose work or volunteering with children is conducted through an organisation such as a charity or community group will have to register with the ISA to be checked.

But people who make informal arrangements with friends, families or other parents will not, contrary to what was understood when details of the scheme were revealed in September.

It says the "practical day-to-day arrangements which parents make with family, friends and other parents to care informally for each other's children" will not fall under the remit of the new scheme.

 

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