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Vetting and Barring changes - our response

If you volunteer for Scouting in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, you may have noted recent media reports regarding the Vetting and Barring scheme. The Scout Association has issued the following response: 

Over the weekend there were stories in national media that the government intends to scrap the Vetting and Barring scheme.  

The scheme was halted last year while a criminal records review was undertaken.

The Scout Association contributed to that review and has met with ministers and officials over the past few months to put forward our views on the content of any new scheme.

Welcome news

We are led to believe, from reports at the weekend, that the Vetting and Barring scheme will be scrapped and that Criminal Records Bureau checks will become more portable.

This means that volunteers will only have to apply for one check which can be updated and used in a number of settings.  

This is welcome news and something that we have requested for many years.


However there are elements of the proposed scheme that concern us.

It has been reported that checks will only be sent to the individual applicant who will then pass on to a local volunteer. 

It is our opinion that this adds an unnecessary bureaucratic burden to local volunteers and will continue to lobby government on this issue.

A formal announcement on any future scheme is expected from the government this week. 

We will continue to keep members informed as and when we receive more news.


Please note this does not apply to Scotland where the new Protection of Vulnerable Groups scheme will launch on 28 February. For more information see Scouts Scotland.

More information

Derek Twine, chief executive of the Scout Association, discusses the possible changes on BBC News (video)



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