Protection of Freedoms Bill

Memorandum submitted by Andrew Clewer (PF 35)

1. I would like to submit my concerns regarding the current CRB situation and how I hope this bill will change the lives of many people who are currently being treated unfairly.

2. Adults working with children, both in a voluntary or employment capacity, are subject to the possibility of allegations being made against them which result in investigations into their practice and suitability.  Where there are concerns the investigating bodies (police, social services, etc) will require answers from the individual.  The individual will then be interviewed and maybe cautioned, charged or have no further actions against them and the investigation stops.  Some allegations also result in no questionning whatsoever.

3. My concern lies with what is then recorded on the individual's CRB in the soft-information deemed to be at the discretion of the Chief Constable.  I am most concerned that when an individual is not questionned they still have allegations recorded against them yet there was no sufficient information regarding the allegation to result in any questionning yet they have a tarnished reputation as a result of their CRB.  When an individual is questionned and no caution or charge is made they have the information recorded too.  This I believe is completely unfair and not balanced.

4. I hope that through the Protection of Freedoms Bill, information recorded on a CRB form is only that relating to a caution or charge.  I hope that individuals who have not been charged or cautioned will have clear CRB forms. This would seem proportionate.  Currently whether cautioned, charged, questionned or even not questionned, an individual is treated the same with regards to having a non-clear CRB.  How can this be fair?

5. Please seriously look at the system - surely if there is not enough evidence to move an allegation forward to a caution or charge there is not enough evidence to call into account the person's suitability through any recording on their CRB form. 

6. I think the revised system should that be any caution or charge is recorded on the CRB form.  Anything not resulting in caution or charge should not be recorded on the CRB form.

March 2011