How Premier League works with the DBS

29 Sep 2022
Play Safe, DBS

Find out more about the League's partnership with the DBS to ensure safer recruitment procedures for clubs and their community organisations

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The Premier League and our clubs strive to create positive experiences where children, young people and adults feel safe, valued and empowered.

Working together underpins our commitment and approach to safeguarding.

To support delivery of our work in this area, the Premier League is working in partnership with the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children to help clubs and their community organisations implement robust and effective safer recruitment procedures and practices, which ensure that staff and volunteers are suitable to work with children and adults at risk.

The DBS supports employers to make safer recruitment decisions by processing and issuing criminal-record checks for England, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man.

Safer recruitment process

This helps organisations to ensure they are recruiting suitable people to roles and is just one element of an effective safer recruitment process used by the League and clubs.

The work with the DBS is a valuable element of the support received by clubs to help enhance their safeguarding policies and procedures.

The collaborative nature of the partnership means that club staff can seek support and updates from the DBS in relation to safeguarding and referring concerns about individuals that may or do pose of risk of harm to children and adults at risk.

The partnership involves delivery of regular training and awareness sessions across each season to support clubs and their community organisations to recruit safely into roles working and volunteering with children, young people and adults at risk.

Regional hubs

Building on this, the Premier League and the DBS have rolled out regional hubs, so that staff from clubs across the football pyramid can connect with their regional DBS advisor providing a key opportunity for networking, peer-to-peer support and learning and sharing of best practice.

"Our Regional Outreach Service will be providing clubs with a single point of contact for all DBS-related queries and questions, as well as the opportunity to access tailored, DBS training for their staff and volunteers," said Eric Robinson, CEO of DBS. "Our team also collates feedback to ensure future improvements can be made to DBS services and processes.

"DBS is committed to working with organisations through our Regional Outreach Service so we can keep the most vulnerable in our society safe. Any organisation of any size can access free support."

DBS resources

Club staff who work with children, young people and adults at risk also have access to a Premier League Safeguarding Hub, which links to resources, publications and relevant information on the DBS service and other safeguarding materials to help prevent incidents and protect individuals. 

"Our partnership with the DBS has been invaluable in providing clubs and their community organisations with additional support with their and safer recruitment procedures and practice," said Premier League Head of Safeguarding, Jess Addicott.

"We look forward to continuing our collaborative work in this space to create safe environments and cultures."

See: DBS Regional Outreach Service

Also in this series

Part 1: League gives support to Play Safe campaign
Part 2: How Premier League and NSPCC work together
Part 4: Safeguarding support empowering youngsters at Brighton

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