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Safer Recruitment of Staff Policy


Safer Recruitment of Staff

Policy Statement


Play Inclusion Project is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of all children and young people in our care.  As an employer, we expect all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.  Our safer recruitment policy ensures that appropriate checks are made on all potential staff and volunteers who will come into contact with children, as part of a transparent and equitable recruitment process. 


Guiding Principles

  • If a member of staff involved in the recruitment process has a close personal or familial relationship with an applicant, they must declare it as soon as they are aware of the individual’s application.

  • They must then avoid any involvement in the recruitment and selection decision-making process for the position.

Objectives of This Policy

  • To deter, reject or identify people who might abuse students or are otherwise unsuited to working with them by having appropriate procedures for appointing staff.

  • To recruit the best candidate for the job, ensuring all job applicants are considered equitably and consistently based on abilities, qualifications, experience and merit as measured against the job description and the person specification.  

  • To conduct the recruitment and selection of staff in a professional, timely and responsible manner and in compliance with current employment legislation


Recruitment and Selection Procedure



  • To ensure equality of opportunity, Play Inclusion Project will advertise all vacant posts to encourage as wide a field of applicant as possible. Normally this entails an external advertisement.

  • Any advertisement will make clear our commitment to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.  

  • All documentation relating to applicants will be treated confidentially.

Job Descriptions and Person Specifications

  • A job description and person specification is a key document in the recruitment process and a copy will be provided to applicants along with their application form.

  • The job description will clearly and accurately set out the duties and responsibilities of the job role.  

  • The person specification will set out the skills, experience, qualifications and personal attributes required for the role.



  • All applicants are required to complete Play Inclusion Project’s application form (online or hard copy).  The application form will include the applicant’s declaration regarding criminal convictions and working with children. 

  • C.V.s will not be accepted in place of a completed application form.

  • All applicants must advise of any gaps in their employment history and provide reasons for these gaps.

  • All applicants will be made aware that providing false information is an offence and could result in the application being rejected or summary dismissal if the applicant has been selected, and possible referral to the police and other professional regulatory bodies. 

  • All applications will be viewed by the Charity Manager and a trustee and will be scored against the Job Description and the Person Specification.

  • The highest scoring applicants will be invited for a formal interview with the trustees and the Charity Manager.


Offer of Employment


If it is decided to make an offer of employment following the formal interview, any such offer will be conditional on the following:

  • the receipt of two references (one of which must be from the applicant's most recent employer)

  • the completion of Play Inclusion Project’s Self-Disclosure form

  • the receipt of a satisfactory enhanced disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service.

  • copies of qualifications and proof of identity


A personal file will be used to track and audit paperwork obtained in relation to the recruitment process.


If the above conditions are satisfied and the offer is accepted, the applicant will be offered employment and a start date will be confirmed.


Pre-employment checks


In accordance with the recommendations of the DfES in "Safeguarding Children: Safer Recruitment and Selection in Education Settings" the Charity carries out a number of pre- employment checks in respect of all prospective employees

Verification of identity and address


All applicants who offered employment will be required to bring the following evidence of identity, address and qualifications:

  • current driving licence or passport or full birth certificate; and

  • two utility bills or statements (from different sources) showing their name and home address

  • documentation confirming their National Insurance Number (P45, P60 or National Insurance Card)

  • documents confirming any educational and professional qualifications referred to in their application form.


Where an applicant claims to have changed his/her name by deed poll or any other mechanism (e.g. marriage, adoption, statutory declaration) he/she will be required to provide documentary evidence of the change.




All offers of employment will be subject to the receipt of a minimum of two satisfactory references, one of which must be from the applicant's current or most recent employer. If the current/most recent employment does/did not involve work with children, then the second referee should be from the employer with whom the applicant most recently worked with children. A referee will not be accepted if they are a relative.


All referees will be asked whether they believe the applicant is suitable for the job for which they have applied and whether they have any reason to believe that the applicant is unsuitable to work with children. All referees will be sent a copy of the job description and person specification for the role which the applicant has applied for. If the referee is a current or previous employer, they will be asked:

  • whether the applicant has ever been the subject of disciplinary procedures involving issues related to the safety and welfare of children (including any in which the disciplinary sanction has expired)

  • whether any allegations or concerns have been raised about the applicant that relate to the safety and welfare of children or young people or behaviour towards children or young people.


Play Inclusion Project will only accept references obtained directly from the referee on the official form with all sections completed. It will not rely on references or testimonials provided by the applicant or on open references or testimonials.  The Charity Manager will compare all references with any information given on the application form. Any discrepancies or inconsistencies in the information will be taken up with the applicant before any appointment is confirmed.


All references received will be verified via telephone.


DBS Checks 


All prospective volunteers and staff must undergo an Enhanced Level Disclosure and Barring Service check following an informal interview.


Applicants will be asked to disclose any non-conviction information that may be related to their suitability for the role they have applied for.

Dealing with convictions

  • Play Inclusion Project operates a formal procedure if a DBS check is returned with details of convictions. Consideration will be given to: 

    • the nature, seriousness and relevance of the offence 

    • how long ago the offence occurred

    • one-off or history of offences

    • changes in circumstances

    • rehabilitation and remorse

  • A formal meeting will take place face-to-face to establish the facts with the Charity Manager. A decision will be made following this meeting.


Retention and security of disclosure information


Play Inclusion Project’s policy is to observe the guidance issued or supported by the DBS on the use of disclosure information. In particular, Play Inclusion Project will:

  • store disclosure information and other confidential documents issued by the DBS in locked, non-portable storage containers, access to which will be restricted to countersignature staff only.

  • not retain disclosure information or any associated correspondence for longer than is necessary. In most cases, Play Inclusion Project will not retain such information for longer than 6 months although we will keep a record of the date of a disclosure, the name of the individual, the type of disclosure, the position in question, the unique number issued by the DBS and the recruitment decision taken.

  • ensure that any disclosure information is destroyed by suitably secure means such as shredding


Retention of records


If an applicant is appointed, Play Inclusion Project will retain any relevant information provided on their application form (together with any attachments) on their personal file. If the application is unsuccessful, all documentation relating to the application will be destroyed after six months.

Updated January 2023

By Joanne Barnes

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