; The Legislation

Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Act

Following the death of Jessica Chapman and Holly Wells in Soham in 2002 the Bichard Inquiry made a recommendation that the current system should be replaced to ensure better record keeping and information sharing between organisations.

The PVG Act responds to recommendation 19 of the Bichard Inquiry Report. Recommendation 19 states that new arrangements should be introduced requiring those who wish to work with children, or vulnerable adults, to be registered.

The PVG Scheme ensures that those who either have regular contact with vulnerable groups through the workplace, or who are otherwise in regulated work, do not have a history of abusive behaviour. It will also deliver a fair and consistent system that will be quick and easy for people to use.

It will exclude people who are known to be unsuitable, on the basis of past behaviour, from working with children and/or protected adults and detect those who become unsuitable while in the workplace.

Although the Scheme is not compulsory, PVG Scheme membership will be the only method of checking that workers are not barred from working with children. Organisations must note, however, that it is an offence to ask an individual to join the PVG Scheme if they are not carrying out, or will not carry out, regulated work.

The PVG Scheme is managed and delivered by Disclosure Scotland and provides the following changes to the Disclosure system:

  • Barring - Disclosure Scotland will assess vetting information (e.g. criminal record information) and prevent people that are considered unsuitable to work with children from entering the Scheme.
  • Listing - the DWCL is replaced by 'the children's list' and a new list of individuals who are unsuitable to work with protected adults is established: the adults' list.
  • Continuous updating - vetting information continues to be collected after the initial application for PVG Scheme membership so that new information can be acted upon if it is relevant

There is extensive guidance to the Scheme on the Disclosure Scotland website

youth scotland