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Changes to the handling of DBS information

Due to the recent implementation of GDPR legislation, the Disclosure and Barring Service have made some changes to their policies to ensure data is handled carefully and appropriately.

As a result, the DBS has recently updated their sample policy on the handling of DBS information. This is a document which organisations can implement into their own company policies to inform employees how they will handle, retain and store DBS information. View the new Policy statement.

One of the main changes the DBS has made to the policy is that they no longer promote keeping certificate information for up to 6 months. Instead, the policy states:

Once a recruitment (or other relevant) decision has been made, we do not keep certificate information for any longer than is necessary. This retention will allow for the consideration and resolution of any disputes or complaints, or be for the purpose of completing safeguarding audits.

Therefore, the DBS leave it up to the ‘recruitment decision makers’ to decide how long you keep the certificate information for. However, it is important that the information is not held ‘longer than necessary’. Once a recruitment decision has been made it is crucial to ask the question – ‘Do we still have a need to keep this information?’

It is also important to remember that certificate information should be kept securely, in lockable, non-portable, storage containers with access strictly controlled and limited to those who are entitled to see it as part of their duties.

Please note: If you are a registered care home which is inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), an organisation which is inspected by Ofsted or an establishment which is inspected by the Care and Social Services Inspectorate for Wales (CSSIW) you may be legally entitled to retain the certificate for the purposes of inspection.

In addition to this, organisations that require retention of certificates in order to demonstrate ‘safer recruitment’ practice for the purpose of safeguarding audits may also be legally entitled to retain the certificate.

View the new Policy statement.

Please call us on 01254 355688 if you have any questions about this change.

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