DBS checks for prisons

TerraQuest News

- Aug 2022

DBS checks for prisons: Here's what you need to know.

If you’re planning on working in a prison, there is a very good chance you’ll need to pass a DBS check. Not only do prison roles put you in a position of authority and trust, but you’ll probably come across people who are vulnerable (for example, have mental health problems). For this reason, prisons need to ensure that they are hiring the right people for the job. However, there are different types of DBS checks and not all prison workers will need to obtain the same level of check.

The levels of DBS checks:

DBS offers three different types of criminal record checks to ensure the correct level of information is accessed depending on the job role. Roles that require you to work with children and/or vulnerable adults will need a higher level of check.

Basic DBS Checks

This level of check is available for all individuals, regardless of their job role. This level of DBS check will look through an individual’s criminal history, showing any unspent convictions that the applicant may have.

Standard DBS Checks

This level of check is only available to organisations or companies who are completing a DBS check on somebody's behalf to make a suitability decision. This will check an applicant’s criminal history for cautions, warnings, reprimands, and convictions.

Enhanced DBS Checks

This is similar to a Standard DBS Check, and this type of check must be completed by an organisation or company on an individual's behalf, and will also check an applicant’s criminal history for cautions, warnings, reprimands, and convictions. An Enhanced DBS Checks can also include a check of the DBS's Children's and/or Adult barred list. Local police forces are also able to add any relevant information they hold on the applicant.

DBS Checks for Prisons

What type of DBS check do prison worker roles need?

There are two types of activity that employers need to consider when it comes to doing background checks: 

Regulated activity

Regulated activity refers to any activity that involves working directly and unsupervised with vulnerable people. Any role that includes this type of activity will require an Enhanced DBS Check with Barred List Check.

Non-regulated activity

A non-regulated activity does not involve direct, unsupervised contact with vulnerable groups, including kitchen or library supervisors, cleaners, etc. These prison workers will qualify for a Standard or Enhanced DBS check. However, it is best practice to opt for an Enhanced DBS check if the role involves coming into contact with prisoners more than a couple of times a month. Any job roles that require no contact with prisons (for example, delivery drivers) will only need a basic DBS check.

Working with young offenders

The rules are a bit stricter for those who work with young offenders as they are usually more vulnerable than adults.

Regulated activity

Anyone working with young offenders unsupervised will require an Enhanced DBS check with Barred List. This can include guards, healthcare providers, social workers, teachers, trainers, or transporters.

Non-regulated activity

Roles that involve non-regulated activities will still require an Enhanced DBS check without the Barred List check. Prison workers who have no direct contact with prisoners may only require a Standard DBS check.

DBS Checks

Fast, Reliable, and Confidential DBS checks

AuthentiQuest is a secure online solution that allows organisations to electronically submit applications to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and Disclosure Scotland (DS) to perform pre-employment criminal records checks.

  • Easy-to-use and admin fees from just £4
  • Track progress of applications online
  • Confirmation of DBS/DS check results before the candidate
  • Multiple user access and privileges depending on your requirements
  • Customised branding
  • Dedicated Account Manager with free training included
  • Available 24/7 via all mobile, tablet, laptop and desktop devices

If you would like to find out more about our DBS checking services, please use the contact details below and a member of our friendly team will be happy to assist.

Tel: 0121 234 1300

Mail: information@terraquest.co.uk

Web: terraquest.co.uk/services/pre-employment-checks/