Not Saussure

January 6, 2007

CRB checks

Filed under: civil liberties — notsaussure @ 12:09 am

As people will no doubt be aware, it’s necessary to obtain a clean bill of health from the Criminal Records Bureau before undertaking certain forms of work, including both paid and voluntary work with children.

I’ve had a friend of mine round this evening complaining that she’s been the victim of a mistake by the CRB. She’s long done voluntary work with a children’s group organised through her church and they’ve at last got round to insisting that all volunteers have a CRB check.

To her horror, she received a letter earlier in the week from the CRB telling that they think she was convicted back in the 1980s for Taking a Vehicle Without the Owner’s Consent, Excess Alcohol and No Insurance, which is news to her. She was even more annoyed to receive, the following day, a really sanctimonious letter from the national organisers of the church children’s group about how they aren’t really sure she’s suitable.

It seems a straightforward enough mistake; according to the details sent by the CRB, someone with the same (rather unusual) first name as my friend and the same equally usual surname as her maiden name was convicted for these offences up in Lancashire on the date in question.   She was by then using her married name and has never been anywhere near the town where the offence was committed and prosecuted.

She’s already phoned up the CRB to complain and they’re sending her forms so she can have the matter investigated; we did, however, look up their CRB’s site and she’s going to fill in a complaints form on-line.

I’ll post again to let folks know how she gets on sorting out what should be quite a simple mistake to rectify. It’s a bit worrying to think, though, what might have happened had this happened in relation to her paid work.




  1. I’m pretty sure this has happened before as well. I’ve heard of other cases.

    Comment by Gracchi — January 6, 2007 @ 1:23 am

  2. I’d heard of it, too; I seem to recall reading that it’s more difficult than one might expect to get such errors corrected — I can’t think why, since if the worst comes to the worst, they can presumably compare someone’s fingerprints with those attached to the record of conviction. I vaguely remember hearing a Radio 4 documentary about it — I’ll try to do a bit of research.

    Comment by notsaussure — January 6, 2007 @ 1:39 am

  3. im a support worker from leeds and i have got a problem with a record in my crb.i went through a disciplinary hearing where i have been allegedly accused of doing something.after the hearing i have been found innocent of all the things i have been accused,but the company didnt remove a record on my crb form.i have got my job back and im still working in the same company but i can not get a job in social care industry anywhere else due to a false record under the section in the crb form called`additional information for police chief executive`.please could you help me or give me an advice what i can do.crb office and information commicioner could not help me,if you can not help me can you give me advice where i can look for help

    thank you

    Comment by paulius — January 22, 2007 @ 1:57 am

  4. Sounds an unpleasant situation, Paulius. I’m hardly an expert in such matters — my friend’s case is a straightforward one of mistaken identity, but it sounds as if you’re challenging either the accuracy of the annotation (rather than whether it’s meant to be about you, I mean) or whether, accurate or not, it should be included.

    I can think of a couple of potential legal remedies, but those would cost money; I think either your Trade Union’s legal department (if you belong to one) or a solicitor would have be your next port of call.

    Comment by notsaussure — January 22, 2007 @ 1:18 pm

  5. The Criminal Record Bureau records are is a parlous state.

    The upcoming National Identity Register should change the situtation a lot…

    But whether for better or worse, who can forsee?


    Comment by George — March 21, 2007 @ 11:34 am

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: