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'Drawing the line' : a report on the Government's Vetting and Barring Scheme

Department for Children, Schools and Families
Publication Date
  • Law


‘Drawing the Line’ A report on the Government’s Vetting and Barring Scheme Sir Roger Singleton Chief Adviser on the Safety of Children Chair of the Independent Safeguarding Authority December 2009 8551-DCSF-Drawing the Line-COV.indd 1 11/12/2009 23:06 1  14 December 2009 Dear Secretary of State, On 14 September 2009 you wrote to the Chair of the House of Commons Children, Schools and Families Select Committee, Barry Sheerman MP, about the new Vetting and Barring Scheme. Parliament had legislated for this scheme in the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 which received overwhelming support in both Houses. That support continued as the scheme was prepared for implementation through a process of extensive consultation. However, you also drew attention to more recent concerns which had been expressed about a particular aspect of the scheme, namely the degree of contact with children which should trigger the requirement to register with the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). These concerns were accompanied by inaccurate and misleading reports about the wider operation of the scheme. You informed Mr Sheerman that, together with Baroness Morgan, you had asked me as the Chief Adviser on the Safety of Children and the Chair of the ISA to check that the Government had drawn the line in the right place in relation to the requirement to register. You asked me to consider whether any adjustments needed to be made and you sought recommendations by early December. I enclose my report. In preparing the report I have been mindful of Parliament’s intention to do everything it reasonably could to ensure that children and vulnerable adults are protected from those who seek to harm them. I have had regard to the issues raised by critics of the scheme and by the established stakeholders. I have drawn on current knowledge about the way a small minority of professionals and volunteer workers abuse children. And I have utilised my own experience of advising Mi

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