The PSA’s consultation asks whether the introduction to request criminal record checks, an important measure in protecting service users and the public, should become a requirement.
In the consultation document, the PSA says: "Some practitioners on an Accredited Register are not subject to a criminal record check by an employer, for example, if they are self-employed. We believe there must be confidence in how practitioners are vetted, and appropriate levels of checks conducted regardless of employment status."
This follows a pilot that was completed earlier this year by the PSA, alongside the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and the Association of Child Psychotherapists (ACP), which tested the practical arrangements for Accredited Registers to access checks in England and Wales. Results showed that, in some instances, Accredited Register practitioners are undertaking regulated activity which means they’re eligible for the highest level of DBS check.
It's possible that the introduction of such safeguarding measures may have unforeseen impacts on Accredited Register practitioners. The PSA have provided an opportunity for you to share your thoughts and we’d encourage you to offer your invaluable feedback on this important piece of work.
They go on to say: "We want to better understand how introducing these changes would affect the Accredited Registers, practitioners, members of the public and people with criminal records."
You can respond to this consultation by completing the PSA's online questionnaire. You’ll be required to answer some more general questions to begin, with questions 16-21 relating specifically to the practitioner experience. The deadline for submitting responses is Tuesday 7 February 2023.
We’re currently collating our organisational response to the consultation and will share it with you in due course.
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