Safer recruitment

Detailed Guidance on Safer Recruitment can be found on the Church of England’s Safeguarding E-Manual:

To register a change of Parish Safeguarding Officer, you must fill in a form. This can be found in Appendix 4 of A Safe Church.

New Parish Safeguarding Officer form – word

New Parish Safeguarding Officer form – pdf


The DBS process

If you want to register your parish online for DBS or make changes to your DBS administrator account, please contact Zoe Skilton, Safeguarding Administration Manager (contact details below).

Detailed information on the DBS disclosure process can be found in the Safer Recruitment Guidance link above. You can also download a summary flow chart of the process below.

Flow chart: the DBS disclosure process

To verify what level of DBS check is required for a role, please consult with the APCS online eligibility tool.

If you feel a higher/lower level of check is required from the result of the online eligibility tool, please consult with Zoe Skilton or one of the Safeguarding Advisers (contact details below).

DBS ID checking during the COVID-19 pandemic

The DBS has issued temporary changes to ID checking guidelines as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. These temporarily relax the ID checking arrangements enabling new checks and renewals to take place without risking infection to the applicant or ID checker.

This enables ID checks to be done remotely using live video links and accepting scanned documents where this is not possible.

Please visit

It remains important that all those we have involved in working with vulnerable individuals across the Diocese remain subject to the relevant safeguarding checks.

DBS update service

With an annual subscription to the DBS update service, applicants can have their criminal record certificate kept up to date and take it with them from role to role. (However, if the certificate relates to work with children and an individual’s role changes to working with vulnerable adults, or vice versa, then a new criminal record application must be made as the basis on which the original certificate was issued has changed.)

To apply for the update service, an applicant must apply within 19 days of the criminal record certificate being issued. The DBS update service is very useful to those who have multiple roles where a criminal record certificate is required. It can also be useful for organisations to check someone’s criminal record certificate status online and receive a result straight away.

To check someone’s registration with the DBS Update service, the DBS administrator should send the following details to the Diocesan Safeguarding Administrator, Zoe Skilton (contact details below):

  • applicant’s name
  • applicant’s date of birth
  • certificate number with which the applicant has registered on the Update Service.

The Diocesan Safeguarding Administrator then verifies the details online and sends confirmation to the parish of the results. The DBS administrator at the parish will still need to have sight of the original certificate to verify it is for the same/higher level of check and workforce as required by the parish role.

Applying for the DBS update service, which carries with it a number of benefits for the individual and the organisation, is a matter of individual choice for the applicant. The Diocese is not able to contribute towards an individual’s annual subscription.

To contact us, email: [email protected]

The South London Church Fund and Southwark Diocese Board of Finance is a company limited by guarantee (No. 236594).
Registered Office: Trinity House, 4 Chapel Court, Borough High Street, London SE1 1HW. Registered Charity: (No. 249678).

© The Diocese of Southwark 2024. All rights reserved.
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