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What are your views on the government's Freedom Bill?

10:18 UK time, Friday, 11 February 2011

The government is publishing a bill which will mean millions of people in England and Wales who work or volunteer with children will no longer need criminal record checks. Does this worry you?

Teachers will continue to be vetted - but those who do occasional, supervised volunteer work will not.

Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg said the Freedom Bill, which will also include giving residents more control over CCTV, limiting police stop and search powers and ending the indefinite storage of innocent people's DNA will change the current system, which treats people with "too much distrust and suspicion".

Do you agree with the bill? Do you think the state treats you like a criminal? Is this a win for civil liberties and common sense or as a parent, do you think this is a step too far?

Thank you for your comments. This debate is now closed.

Comments

Page 1 of 4

  • Comment number 1.

    This is wrong with out checks the criminal and perverts will be able to work with children and other at risk adults??? How long before this cost cutting measure back fires' on the government? But some parts of the act need reform putting innocent peoples. D.N.A. on record should go, but not cctv in parts of braford or Luton.

  • Comment number 2.

    It used to be that you were presumed innocent until proven guilty. Under legislation that has been passed over recent years you have been presumed guilty until such time as proven innocent.

    The media has built the myth that adults are to be ditrusted when around children and that there is a paedophile lurking around every corner.

    Hopefully this will see a raft of changes that will look at other data that is held on all of us i.e. internet records, etc. Unless you have some sort of criminal record, are genuinely suspected for good reason of being involved in illegal activity etc. then why are these records held? Too many of our rights as citizens within a democracy have been eroded over the years due to paranoid governments.

    CCTV is everyehre these days and yes it may be useful but how many times does it genuinely aid crime fighting, result in prosecutions etc.? Big Brother has arrived albeit that few politicians and others in power would admit it.

  • Comment number 3.

    It was the clunky and cumbersome system, the cost and the lack of a route to challenge errors... oh, and the intent to include unsubstantiated allegations... that were the problems, not actually having checks.

    I'm a teacher by trade, and a school governor - at other schools - by choice, and I'm currently job-hunting.

    I have an enhanced CRB check from last September done by the primary school where I'm Vice Chair of Governors. Yet each job I go for needs to do it's own checks, and so will another primary which is light on governors and has asked if I would be interested... Why the 'eck do I need more than one check?

    The checking is a good idea, and it's a comfort for all involved to be sure about the probity of those associating with young or vulnerable people - and it was a great delight to accompany my primary school to the panto at Christmas, able to sit with children, hold their hands and indeed comfort one who was scared by the villain, with the other staff secure that I was OK and not likely to misbehave with the youngsters.

    But requirements for multiple checks because you do more than one thing with young/vulnerable people or the same thing at more than one place, and the inclusion of rumours unsubstantiated by the test of a court of law, mean that the entire concept is threatened because - like so many systems introduced by government - it has been poorly designed.

  • Comment number 4.

    As a rule I am against the State looking over my shoulder. However I feel that the dilution of the protection of children by this move is wrong. Far too often "volunteers" have proven to be predatory. The "Big Society" may,just may, have its place in the "chattering class society of Tory heartlands" but the safety of the vunerable must not be put at risk just because Tory "Volunteers " object to being subjected to the same process as "The wage earning classes".

  • Comment number 5.

    Not before time. These checks are intrusive and, whilst they should continue for people with regular contact with the vulnerable, the whole thing has escalated into a bureaucratic nightmare.

    Under Labour this country has turned into an Orwellian nightmare. It is time for freedom - including reasonable freedom of speech on HYS instead of over-zealous censorship.

  • Comment number 6.

    Agency lecturers have to pay about £34 for their CRB and renew it regularly.

    Why?

  • Comment number 7.

    Because agency lecturers have to pay £34 for their CRB and renew it regularly, they are being discriminated against.

    WHY?

  • Comment number 8.

    Why are agency lecturers regularly forced to pay £34 or so for their CRB?

    About time the Institute for Learning (now a new fee-collecting organisation blackmailing agency lecturers into paying £68 a year) stepped back and asked questions on behalf of the people it is SUPPOSED to be representing BUT IS MANIFESTLY FAILING TO REPRESENT!

  • Comment number 9.

    Common sense prevails and I am no longer a paedophile until proven innocent!!!!

  • Comment number 10.

    My first reaction is good. When we invite someone into our home do we do security checks?

    Do we check everyone getting onto a bus for a bomb?

    Do we ask for police checks before getting into a taxi?

    Are we guilty until proven innocent?

    Precautions are good but you can be too careful.

  • Comment number 11.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 12.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 13.

    Anything which takes the suspicion that we are all perverts and criminals away is a good thing.

    The Labour Governments fascination with snooping on us has to be rolled back.

  • Comment number 14.

    The freedom bill is just some gimmick to cut costs. Criminals will have it easier because there is no worry about spot checks, children will be at risk because it is just amongst volunteers that peadophiles have easy access to groom children. I agree that there was no need to be checked for the odd school run and that kind of thing but I hope that this will not backfire. CCTV worked brilliantly in our community but there are always people who do not like it. The freedom bill is for the people who shout loudest to get their way.

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    I would agree with some of these changes such as the curbing of stop and search powers, however the CRB check is critical in protecting children. There needs to be a consistant approach to this and the best way would be to have a CRB licence for adults that cover every eventuality rather than having seperate CRB checks for each involvement in child activities or as this proposal suggests, none at all. I`m not sure what`s meant by giving residents more control over CCTV, it all seems rather vague. I also agree to the ending of indefinite storage of DNA, although i don`t agree with the keeping of DNA for those "deemed" to be a security risk, again all rather vague and open to interpretation. I have to agree with Mark Williams Thomas in that offenders are very deviant and calculating and will seek our areas where these checks currently in place do not exist. So all in all a mixed bag.

  • Comment number 17.

    Some Freedom Bill!

    Why doesn't it cover agency lecturers, currently being exploited by having to pay about £34 for their CRB and (now) a £68 annual fee to the Institute for Learning [sic.].

    Freedom for the people - ALL of them, not just those with higher incomes or no incomes whatsoever!

  • Comment number 18.

    The right decision but for the wrong reason. No doubt this is just a cost-cutting exercise, though I think that many will be relieved that they will no longer require this absurd vetting process which is a disincentive to anyone who wants to work in schools, etc... The Criminal Records Bureau has the power to wreck a persons career even when alleagations are proved untrue. It is, frankly, a pernicious organisation and any measure which reduces it's powers has to be greatly welcomed.

  • Comment number 19.

    This is a good move as far as I am concerned. If someone wants to work or volunteer with children then it is up to the organising group to gain verifiable references from past work etc. Not be lazy and just sign them up because they must be a good soul.

    All my jobs are reference checked with past employers, being in engineering we do that, check things. Schools clubs etc need the same effort.

    This will not work with those that have never offended but it is a start.

    I want to be able to carry on my life without being watched like some zoo animal. When I am dangerous then tag me.


  • Comment number 20.

    Lewis Fitzroy (No.1) asks what is wrong: well, the question, Lewis, is WHO PAYS THE BILL?

    If authorities want information, THEY should be the ones to pay!

  • Comment number 21.

    The first thing we have to accept is that there is no such thing as a "risk free" society. But people want, on the one hand, the government not to interfere in their lives but, on the other, want it to protect them from every bad thing that might happen to them. These are incompatible and some balance must be struck. Having struck that balance there have to be no hysterics blaming the government when something bad does happen: it can't be everywhere and if it could we wouldn't pay the price.

    It seems unreasonable state interference to retain the DNA of those not found guilty of crimes. But then the "nothing to hide, nothing to fear" crown would argue why not and can doubtless point to examples where someone whose DNA was not kept would go on to commit a later crime which would have been solved earlier (or even prevented) had the DNA been on the database.

    With CRB checks they really do start from the presumption of guilt. This is not in accord with our fundamental freedoms. It imposes costs and delays on businesses and individuals to eliminate what is, after all, a tiny risk. Most child abuse occurs in families and close friends which the CRB checks do nothing to prevent. CRB checks also only show whether someone has committed a crime, not their predilection to commit crime (not that predilection to commit crime is actually a crime). Moreover some occupations (eg school nurses, health visitors etc) have to carry their certificates around with them to show at places they encounter children. In practise this means such places are placing ADDITIONAL checks on people who have already been cleared. Why not presume that the employer of such staff have already cleared them (as they have to anyway).

    Like many things these checks created the illusion of safety without actually addressing the real risk but impose costs on society to do so.

  • Comment number 22.

    It's certainly a step in the right direction. Those organisations with any level of professionalism will still apply CRB checks to ALL staff, whilst people who just occassionally ferry kids to football matches will be able to do so.
    The best bit is that CRB checks will be portable & you won't need to keep applying for one, every time you go & work for another organisation.

  • Comment number 23.

    The ConDems are slowly but surely removing all the checks and balances that have been put in place to protect people. When this all goes belly up as it undoubtedly will the taxpayer will once again be left to pick up the pieces and pay compensation to those who have suffered at the hands of abusers and ner do wells. Everything comes at a price but in an attempt to be hailed as the financial saviours of the nation they are putting people at risk.

    There seems to be little thought for the safety and security of ordinary folk but never mind it will all be Gordon's fault.

    The sooner we have an election to restore the balance in this country the better.

  • Comment number 24.

    Typical left wing claptrap from the BBC "does it worry me".....oh we lost new labour, our masters, our saviours and our fathers, what are we to do? No more cotton wooling, no more depravation of our liberties under auspices of 'keeping us safe' and no more utter rubbish from a government and from a philosophy that stifles free speech, freedom of actions and freedom to do what you like but in a responsible manner.

    The BBC, New Labour, Unite Against Fascism and all the other left wing rubbish deserve our combined disgust.

  • Comment number 25.

    At last some common sense prevails. It was getting so as one couldn't walk on the same side of the pavement if a child were there too.

    Myself and other parents flatly refused to undertake a CRB check just to take turns doing the Sunday rugby run and we will never accept such a level of intrusion on our lives by government.

    Setting it up and strong-arming "Part-timers" was a busy-body, pc-gone mad, bonkers decision in the first place. On what planet did they think they were on? They were trying to legislate the trust between parents???? I thought the next step was for them to try and legislate love!

    I know the other parents well. They know me well and of course, the children know us all perfectly well enough. WE TRUST EACH OTHER and like the overwhelming majority of UK parents, that trust is long established and well placed.



  • Comment number 26.

    Very bad move. I would have thought that to, at the very least satisfy any objective risk assessment, Police vetting should be a basic requirement of any organisation entrusted with the care of children. However, I think that such organisations can impose their own rules.

  • Comment number 27.

    Its about time, from what I see,the checks have inconvenienced millions with no benifit what so ever, hopefuly people will now be treated with a bit more respect, though there is still a way to go. God help us if a labour government gets in power again.

  • Comment number 28.

    About time this piece of 'loony left' legislation was repleaed. I would be worried if all checks were abolished and it is right that people who work with children, like teachers, should be vetted. But why should a parent be checked just because they share childminding duties with a close friend a few days each week? This was a crazy idea, from a crazy government that was obsessed with micro-managing all our lives. We have to stop treating everyone who has contact with kids as a paedophile. These cuts are more to do with common sense - if they save the taxpayer some money at the same time then great.

  • Comment number 29.

    1. At 11:43am on 11 Feb 2011, Lewis Fitzroy wrote:
    This is wrong with out checks the criminal and perverts will be able to work with children and other at risk adults??? How long before this cost cutting measure back fires' on the government? But some parts of the act need reform putting innocent peoples. D.N.A. on record should go, but not cctv in parts of braford or Luton.
    --------------------------------------------------------------------

    This is a badly disguised bit of racism above isn't it?

    Keep an eye on Muslims, that's what you are saying. The only individual freedom I would curtail is the right of people like you to speak.

  • Comment number 30.

    Thank goodness the government is reversing the trend towards facism that Labour was foisting onto us.I would not have wanted my children to grow up under such circumstances.

  • Comment number 31.

    This government seem to have no regard for young people/children - they remove funding for 6th form students put up University fees to astromonical levels and now show they have scant regard for the safety of children too.

    It is Bizarre that teachers - who are already monitored - need to have the CRB checks but adults who are not monitored as closely do not.

    They harp on about freedom for adults but what about the rights and SAFETY of children?

  • Comment number 32.

    Freedom! what a joke. Where is the freedom when we have a mishmash of cobbled together draconian laws realating to prostitution, the (unique to the UK) laws on so called indecent images, where is the civilized approach to the former, where is the open freedom of artist expression to the latter. Until these areas of life and many, many others are addressed, this so called "Freedom Bill" is a weak travesty of what is really needed, a Bill Of Rights.

  • Comment number 33.

    I agree with most of the Bill that uses common-sense rather than the Dogma of PC - EXCEPT that 'stop and Search' should be at the discretion of the Police alone - NOT self-interested, vote-seeking Politicians - as we've had in the recent past...

  • Comment number 34.

    The CRB checks assume guilt until proven innocent - like a much of NewLieMore's legislation!

    If you try & invest, it is ASSUMED you are trying to launder money.

    If you want foreign exchange - you are ASSUMED to be guilty of something.

    If you want to buy or sell a house- you are ASSUMED to be a criminal.

    Welcome to Police State UK.

    Anyway as shown by a recent case a clear CRB proves NOTHING!

  • Comment number 35.

    A tiny bit of common sense at last. The people who wanted vetting brought in should be vetted for intelligence as they have shown little.

  • Comment number 36.

    Too much recent legislation in the UK has been driven by knee-jerk reactions to individual cases. The Freedom Bill recognises this.

  • Comment number 37.

    More crumbs from the Tory table so that the Former Liberal Democrats can wave their 'liberal' flag. What absolute twaddle this is. When will Nick Clegg be allowed to announce something that matters!!!!

  • Comment number 38.

    "Is this a win for civil liberties and common sense"

    Definitely a win for civil liberties and common sense.

    The CRB check merely said the subject had no criminal record. It did not show he/she hadn't committed a crime (not yet caught) nor that he/she wouldn't in the future. A false sense of security.

    A cumbersome, problem-prone and expensive system, of limited benefit.

    No doubt someone will say this is a mistake, and that we should do everything we can to protect our children. That's rubbish, that nobody really believes ....

    Are you a parent who regularly transports your child/children in your car (to/from school, shopping, sports, days out, etc.)? On average 2 such children are killed every week. Still think we should do everything we can to protect our children??? Or maybe, we should take all sensible and reasonable measures? CRB checks are not sensible and reasonable.




  • Comment number 39.

    Given how the effective criminalisation of every adult who may once have considered working with kids has poisoned relations between generations, robbed many children of access to sympathetic adults and destroyed thousands of the same clubs and activities that the 'Big Society' is supposedly seeking to promote, I would have to give this move a cautious welcome.

    This of course is dependent on what they eventually define as 'occasional' and 'supervised' and upgrading of the underlying databases to ensure that someone who shares a name with an 'offender' (and I'm not talking about someone caught urinating in public or the 16 year-old who bedded their 15-year-old girlfriend, both of whom would currently be forced to sign the Sex Offenders' Register) doesn't have their life inadvertently ruined by having to prove their innocence against a computer which 'says no'.

    On the other hand I don't think the wider 'Freedom Bill' goes anywhere near far enough. In particular, the potential ill uses to which the National Obesity Register (the world's largest and most detailed such list) and National Child Measuring Programme (condemned in 2008 by the Rowntree Foundation as intrusive and unnecessary but to be made compulsory by the Fib-Cons) could be put, particularly with the will increasingly being there, are absolutely terrifying.

  • Comment number 40.

    14. At 12:05pm on 11 Feb 2011, taurusbellow wrote:
    The freedom bill is just some gimmick to cut costs. Criminals will have it easier because there is no worry about spot checks, children will be at risk because it is just amongst volunteers that peadophiles have easy access to groom children. I agree that there was no need to be checked for the odd school run and that kind of thing but I hope that this will not backfire. CCTV worked brilliantly in our community but there are always people who do not like it. The freedom bill is for the people who shout loudest to get their way.


    So, presumably, you wish the state to provide you and your family with a permanent 24x7 escort of armed security guards, police outriders to escort your state funded bullet proof car everywhere (do you need the helicopter escort as well?), concrete and steel barriers to your home and every other security measure just to reduce the risk? We'd probably find that we would need 50% of the population employed in the security industry and then have no means to fund them.

  • Comment number 41.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 42.

    I think its sensible.
    Not everyone is a paedophile or has bad intentions.
    Its up to parents to use their judgement to determine who is safe to be around their kids.
    I resented the underlying suspicion that everyone is up to no good that CRB checks promoted.
    The new policy is a return to sense and will allow parents to run each other's kids to football or brownies without having to first be checked out.

  • Comment number 43.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 44.

    The flaw in the CRB check is that those without convictions pass the check. It only 'protects' chidren and vunerable people from those who have been found out.
    Further more the integrity of the data held on the databases used for the CRB check has been shown to be at fault.
    Anyone involved in abuse cases will tell you people are more at risk from their nearest than from strangers.
    The main thrust behind the growth in CRB checks was organisation's desire to avoid litigation if things went wrong.

  • Comment number 45.

    I think it's a good thing. Check people who have access to children all the time in places where they can be cornered. But generally people who volunteer are working with others and would be monitored as such by those other people, plus it's for small amounts of time usually such as football practise and with large groups not individuals.

    I had to have a CRB check to work at the hospital.
    As an admin assistant?
    The data protection act I have to sign covers the aspect of personal information.
    But not sure why I had to have a CRB check? I'd understand if I was a nurse dealing with people but I was in an office everyday.
    But that's the NHS for you, throw money at every corner except the real problems, due to incompetant managers and directors.

    It's the media who make us think there is a child abuser round every corner because when one incident happens it is overly reported, I'm willing to bet that the stats tell a very different story.

  • Comment number 46.

    The government is publishing a bill which will mean millions of people in England and Wales who work or volunteer with children will no longer need criminal record checks.
    Q. Does this worry me? A. Yes, this leaves an open door to those who want to abuse children. Because they will know that all they need to do to gain access to children is to volunteer instead of take a job. Is this what the coalition mean by the big society?
    It is right for teachers to continue to be vetted - but those who do occasional, supervised volunteer work also need to be vetted. I bet Nick Clegg and David Cameron will not leave they own children to be supervised by an un-vetted stranger.
    I am happy for the police to have control over CCTV as it is their responsibility to keep us all safe. However, I do not want my neighbours to have control over CCTV, this will give them the ability to use it for their own personal gain or to harass those neighbours they do not like.
    I have no problem with the police storing my DNA indefinitely, as I do not intend to commit a crime. Them storing this information may assist if I was a victim of crime.
    Q. Do I agree with the bill? A. No, this is a bill for the freedom of those who want to abuse children and those who do not want to be caught after committing crimes, not for the law abiding people.
    Q. Do I think the state treats you like a criminal? A. No.
    Q. Is this a win for civil liberties and common sense or as a parent, do I think this is a step too far? A. I think this is a step too far. I think this is another step in the coalition’s drive to cut spending without concerns to the effect on the community. Not having to carry out vetting for those who volunteer to supervise children will reduce spending. Reducing the amount of DNA stored will also reduce costs.

  • Comment number 47.

    Without knowing the details, I suspect it is very sensible.

    The CRB checks came with an opportunity cost. That cost was the amount of work that could no longer be carried out on a casual or voluntary basis. Even if you believe that children were safer as a result of these CRB checks and I think it would be hard to measure, I think the risk to reward ratio is likely to be favourable.

    My instinct tells me that in general, the more adults are allowed to look after children, the safer the children are likely to be and the less adults in charge, the more vulnerable.

    Of course we can think of exceptions to this rule, but a class of 30 children with one CRB checked teacher, I would argue would be more at risk than the same class with one CRB checked teacher and 3 unchecked parents helping.

  • Comment number 48.

    One of Labours faults is when drafting laws they never get the balance quite right. As with, what age do you leave a child alone, the majority of us born in the 50's 60's 70's managed to survive and attend youth Clubs, Scout's and Church or even school and Grandparents, Uncles and Aunt's without being sexually molested.
    The fact is thankfully the issue is very much higher profile the chances of getting away with it have be greatly reduced but it still happens unfortunately, so a sensible balance has to be struck, whether a balance largely based on cost cutting is sensible remains to be seen.

  • Comment number 49.

    plainspeakit wrote:
    Agency lecturers have to pay about £34 for their CRB and renew it regularly.

    Why?
    _____________________________________________________________

    They have unsupervised access to our children. I am a lecturer and have to renew my CRB regularly. I have no problem with having to do so.

  • Comment number 50.

    There must be a balance in all things, employers and charities have a duty of care for childre or vulnerable adults in their custody and that ensures that references are taken up and vetted properly, that duty of care may be a CRB check but these should not be mandatory in all cases. It would not be sensible for an education authority to employ a teacher without a CRB check being part of the recruitment process, same with care homes and the national health services among others where employees are in direct and regular contact with children or vulnerable adults. Where a charity is relying on volunteers there are other precautions in addition to any CRB check, such as ensuring no vulnerable person is left alone with a volunteer, and that more than one volunteer needs to be in charge of children or vulnerable adults. The law already requires certain offenders, by definition known to offend, to be registered and monitored but CRB's will not prevent those who have not been caught or convicted from getting into positions of trust unfortunately. One must use common sense, reference taking, personal judgement and evaluation supported with CRB's when proportionate.
    With respect to curtailing the powers of Local Authorities to carry out covert surveillance against their citizens I am all in favour of that, our police have the power and local authorities should take the suspisions there for investigation.

  • Comment number 51.

    The only reason this was introduced in the first place was because of the tragic case of two young girls murdered by Ian Huntley and the media storm it created.

    The media went to great length to point out that Huntley had been accused of a number of offenses in the past but as accusations are not the same as convictions, I've often wondered whether Huntly himself would've failed the very CRB check that was brought in to stop people like him working with or near children?

    I for one will be glad to see the back of the CRB check and all the other guilty until proven innocent legislation introduced by the last government. (I know that's not what's happening here, it's being relaxed instead)

    As other commenters have said, there isn't a paedophile on every street corner like the media would have you believe and children now are of no greater danger from paedophiles they were 30 years ago.

    If you really want to protect your children then you can start by teaching them how to cross the road safely. Getting hit by a moving vehicle is by far the biggest child killer.

  • Comment number 52.

    Too much emphasis was applied on CRB, not enough emphasis was made on interviewing the applicant, example looking at other issues, such as why the person wanted the job? what they had to offer? or looking at other simple issues, such as personality, along with character.

    I would also suggest if we look at recent history, what evidence is there to suggest it actualy worked? Most professionals in health and social services along with education have been checked for decades, yet there is still prosecutions.

  • Comment number 53.

    Doomed

  • Comment number 54.

    I work with young people between 13 and 18 years old and I have to be vetted and CRB checked every 2 years.

    That said if someone is 'supervising' young people with a CRB checked person with them I do not see a problem. Some of the comments as usual are over the top, not all people who wish to work with young people are 'perverts' and not all men who wish to work with young people are perverts, thank you very much!

    We need to keep a perspective here, anyone who wants to work with 'young' people should be vetted to the highest level but CRB checks take for ever to come through and you have to go through hoops to fill them in correctly; trust me what they ask you would put most people of excellent character off in the first place! This is a good thing I suggest.

    Values in our society have fallen to an all time low but I repeat 'not all people who wish to work with young people are perverts or any other word you can think of using.' The total satisfaction of helping a young person to develop character and confidence in a challenging environment is an amazing feeling and I have been doing it for 32 years now, so I now something about it.

    Anything that stops the majority of law abiding citizens who want to help their communities being looked at as potential paedophiles just because young people are involved is a good thing.

    But the 'vetting' should be 100% and the interview should be extremely challenging, end of story.


  • Comment number 55.

    i bet all those attacking the human rights bill suddenly change tack on this bill.they want to keep this one.although it encrouches their liberty
    cheap shot i know but?? i myself again ask for commonsense to prevail,i
    dont mind checks of this kind,if in the end it saves a child from the
    clutches of the vile,insipid and sick.it is not a subject one likes to discuss but,we have to deal with it...ps.i would not like to be in cleggs shoes if this(god forbid)goes wrong!!

  • Comment number 56.

    The only thing CRB checks do is give people a false sense of security. Relying too heavily on CRB checks means that a predatory paedophile would have to get caught abusing children before anyone could stop them having access to children.

    Good working practices like empowering staff to raise concers about colleagues, and good supervision of staff are what is needed to protect children. The Ian Huntley argument is a non-starter because the information on his past wasn't shared because somebody mistakenly thought it would breach the data protection act.

  • Comment number 57.

    if a pedophile was given a life sentence without parole - no matter the "severity" of the offense - then all this bureaucracy would not have been needed. Pursue these monsters with all possible means available and do not tar other elements of society ie. peaceful protesters, motorists, airline passengers etc. Do not burden the easily identifiable,accountable decent people of this nation with oppression - I do not want it to be considered the norm that we must constantly prove ourselves to be decent so those that should be rooting out the criminals in society can take a back seat and sity infront of cctv cameras or checklists all day.
    rant over.... I feel better already.

  • Comment number 58.

    Actually, the carrying of your CRB certificate is discouraged even if you work at multiple locations or make visits to places where checking is necessary and your employer is assumed to have ensured that necessary checks are done.

    For example, Ofsted Inspectors are told not to take theirs to each school that they visit, their Ofsted photo ID is deemed sufficient proof that they may be let in at no risk to the youngsters in the school.

    I checked this out as safeguarding governor when due an inspection. Oddly enough, it happened that I was at the front door and let them in, and did check their IDs before getting them to sign in. One tried to show me his CRB certificate!

  • Comment number 59.

    24. At 12:28pm on 11 Feb 2011, Mike wrote:

    Typical left wing claptrap from the BBC "does it worry me".....oh we lost new labour, our masters, our saviours and our fathers, what are we to do? No more cotton wooling, no more depravation of our liberties under auspices of 'keeping us safe' and no more utter rubbish from a government and from a philosophy that stifles free speech, freedom of actions and freedom to do what you like but in a responsible manner.

    The BBC, New Labour, Unite Against Fascism and all the other left wing rubbish deserve our combined disgust.

    ---------------------------------

    Sheesh give it a rest. You want to debate this issue fine, do so. But if you want to go into a tirade about left-wing fascism then people will just stroll on past your post to something more intelligent.

  • Comment number 60.

    It is a badly thought out cost cutting measure - It will mean that some people will be able to abuse children and vulnerable adults without check until they are caught.

    It was a cumbersome system - that could have been made far more effective by having a national database so that only one check was required rather than every time you changed job. Baby out with bathwater syndrome.

    I do hope it doesn't extend to CCTV reduction because where I live the crime rate plummeted and more crimes were solved. I certainly feel safer with CCTV than without.

    Mind you the longer the Condems last - the more unsafe I feel - not to mention poorer.

  • Comment number 61.

    Do you agree with the bill?
    NO, it'll jsut give an easier ride to the criminal element even more from this move by the la-la liberals that seem to have their head in the clouds and think everyone is fundamentally decent ... they're not.

    Do you think the state treats you like a criminal?

    No. Why? Because i'm not. Criminals get treated like criminals. Although getting 'treated' like a criminal these days seems to entail getting the vote and being put up in 5 star accomodation with 3 squares a day, games consoles, TV's, with people actually breaking in there to give them mobile phones.

  • Comment number 62.

    Thank goodness. Common sense at last. Over the last few years, 60 year old school teachers, young mums, vicars, sunday school teachers and just about every member of our congregation volunteering to work with children at sunday schools, for chidlren's trips, children's clubs etc., has had to have one of these CRB checks before they could volunteer. Many of these people have been doing it for years, and the whole set up was ridiculous. OK, so yes, there should be checks on people who work with children, but not for everyone, and especially for those who have worked with children for years. Thank God that Brown, Balls, Cooper, Harman and all those other politically correct idiots are not in charge any more.

  • Comment number 63.

    Does this worry you?

    Yes it does, because it still leaves a chance for an individual, currently known by the authorities, to gain the trust of children (even if the contact is only infrequent and supervised) to then act maliciously on that trust when they AREN'T supervised.

    What do you think the reaction if this does in fact happen?

    I'll tell you.

    People will be in uproar asking why the check weren't made in the first place!

    The author K.P. Bath was convicted in the US for 6 years for the possesion of child pornography. He made is living writing books for children and at some point probably visited schools. He was also a volunteer at his local library before his arrest. Now I know there was no suggestion he actually hurt or molested any children but tell me now if there shouldn't be any checks?

  • Comment number 64.

    46. At 1:04pm on 11 Feb 2011, Me Myself and I wrote:
    I have no problem with the police storing my DNA indefinitely, as I do not intend to commit a crime. Them storing this information may assist if I was a victim of crime.


    This is not about whether you intend to commit a crime but whether DNA evidence could be used to link you to a crime you had not committed. Moreover, suppose you wished to peacefully assert your right to free assembly and free expression, could it be used restrict those rights?

  • Comment number 65.

    60. At 1:29pm on 11 Feb 2011, RichardGrey wrote:

    It is a badly thought out cost cutting measure - It will mean that some people will be able to abuse children and vulnerable adults without check until they are caught.

    It was a cumbersome system - that could have been made far more effective by having a national database so that only one check was required rather than every time you changed job. Baby out with bathwater syndrome.

    I do hope it doesn't extend to CCTV reduction because where I live the crime rate plummeted and more crimes were solved. I certainly feel safer with CCTV than without.

    Mind you the longer the Condems last - the more unsafe I feel - not to mention poorer.

    ----------------------

    Do you campaign to shut churches? What about the abuse cases there?

    Do you want everyone with a backpack getting on a bus to be searched?

    Maybe we should just throw everyone in prison until they are proven innocent?

    Some measures of safety is needed but labour took it way too far.

  • Comment number 66.

    The checks will continue to be in place where people are unsupervised and work closely and regularly with children.

    When it got to the point where one council had an empty playground because parents were not allowed to accompany their children because they had no checks it had clearly gone too far.

    The checks will not stop anyone who has not as yet been caught. And Billy at post 56 makes a very good point.

    I am not sure what rights I will have in relation to cctv. I thought this was used extensively in recording crime, and in tracing someone's last movements. Until the cctv goes into my house or the toilet cubicle I don't have too much of an issue with it.



    I would have no problem with my DNA being stored. Presumably if I had criminal tendencies although I had not been caught as yet, it might cause me some concern. If I understand correctly, keeping a record of DNA may mean that the police can automatically eliminate people from their enquiries. I mean, we are all supposed to be registered at birth - I don't think anyone is suggesting that after 10 years our records should be scrapped? There is always a record somewhere.



  • Comment number 67.

    We have ploughed through so many of these schemes designed to protect the customer and most fail all tests in one way or another. They are cumbersome, expensive, slow and inaccurate. They fail to establish a safe environment for those who claim they do so.

    And yet, in principle, they should work. After all we have a whole army of law enforcers, law practitioners and back up staff, engaged in monitoring who is doing what with whom. Where should the line be drawn? Is it on the first offence, or on the first near miss, or on providing proof you are okay? However you prescribe it, it must be shown to work, and, if it doesn't then it deserves to be scrapped.

    My only caveat is that we cannot ever have a risk free environment. If that is the case then are these schemes simply Fool's Gold?

  • Comment number 68.

    plainspeakit wrote:
    Agency lecturers have to pay about £34 for their CRB and renew it regularly.

    Why?

    =================================================================

    Most worthwhile employers pay this fee on behalf of employees as it is in their interest to do so.

    On the point in question I have been CRB'd to run a Junior Rugby team.

    I don't object to it. I think it's a positive move for child protection.

    In my opinion this is another cost cutting measure and I trust that child protection organisations are getting ready to prosecute the government should any child come to harm because of the relaxation of the rules.

  • Comment number 69.

    24. At 12:28pm on 11 Feb 2011, Mike wrote:
    Typical left wing claptrap from the BBC "does it worry me".....oh we lost new labour, our masters, our saviours and our fathers, what are we to do? No more cotton wooling.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Clearly anyone who can interpret the question "does it worry you" as "typical left-wing claptrap" no longer has any need of "cotton wooling". Something with padding would be more appropriate.

  • Comment number 70.

    At 11:43am on 11 Feb 2011, Lewis Fitzroy wrote

    'This is wrong with out checks the criminal and perverts will be able to work with children and other at risk adults???'

    Unfortunately, the fact is current checks don't work either which has been proved very recently. A determined person will find away in, whilst there are many that may clear the checks but become tempted afterwards.

    For many the tests have proved to be very expensive as employers have forced them to pay before employing them and stupidly the checks are not transferable and certainly the cost would put me off volunteering for anything that needed such checks but it dones't mean I am anti ID cards and DNA.

    As I say I have no problems with innocent people being on the list, I am one following a local murder case some years ago.

    Think of the money saved in crime fighting especially in rape and murder cases.

    Apart from it being a deterent then if a loved one suffered such a fate wouldn't you like the police to have a greater chance of finding the villian quickly?

    If people sat and thought about the postives of DNA and ID cards instead of reacting to the negatives then providing the government got its act together to keep cost minimal for all then a good scheme could virtually eliminate things like the risk of identity theft and help fight crime.

    Everyone already has or should have an identity number, its called your National Insurance number so we could condense DVLA, Passports etc into one database with the data protected by a series of very simple passwords only you know.

    Then if you go to say purchase something, get credit or hire a car you give enter your NI number, answer a sample of your trigger passwords and up pops your photo. If its not you then it must be someone trying to steal your identity.

    Its not rocket science and it doesn't need to be an infringment of anyones rights in fact it protects them.

    Private schemes like this are used by many car hire companies in Canada and the USA.

    Time to wake up as the types of crime are changing. Only desperate local people break into to your home there is more money to be had by impersonating you to get credit and goods etc.

  • Comment number 71.

    Whatever. It will still leave us as subjects not citizens. This lot are no more going to give up the power to invade every corner of our lives than the last lot were.

  • Comment number 72.

    This is a catch 22

    Yes, it may be over the top, but the innocent until proven guilty statement is on thin ice when it comes to children.

    I'm not so sure that this just stems from governments interference either. There are parents out there who call the police if they think someone is taking a picture of their children. I got told I couldn't use my camera while I was at a water theme park with my kids, because other children are there. If this is how I am treated as a member of the public by other members of the public, why should those who work with children, in any form, be excempt from CRB checks?

    But how on earth do you identify a pervert? I suppose if these measures aid in stopping the abuse of children, leave it be.

    If you have nothing to hide, then whats the issue.


    I couldn't care less about my DNA being held on a database either. I've done nothing wrong, so why worry. Those who think it is a conspiracy against the mass population need a good shake. Imagine all the rapist and murders who are going about their normal daily activities without a care in the world because they haven't been caught

    If these system help in bringing just a handful of these people to justice, then so be it.

  • Comment number 73.

    Lest be honest about this, anybody hell bent on getting to children will get through any check. Besides how do you check everyone who has contact with children. The ruling meant if you said Hullo to a kid in the street who was going to school and one said Hullo everyday to that same kid, you were liable to be checked and if you didnt subject yourself to a criminal check then one could be charged with averting the course of justice...........Now you may think Im having a larf but I did contact the Police and they did do a check and I was clean. They did say it was a ludicrous situation as they didnt have the resources to check the number of people who have contact with children.
    How many people like me are involved well a low estimate of 4 million people has been mooted.
    How does one nail the real problems is probably down to Mums and Dads saying to their kids, 'Look there are a lot of good people out there with a minority of bad people, if one isnt sure run and scream for help' Mistakes will be made and one will never ever be 100% right
    All those who are caught, piano wire comes to mind but that would be against their human rights but then I might make an acception to that rule

  • Comment number 74.


    49. At 1:12pm on 11 Feb 2011, Me Myself and I wrote:
    plainspeakit wrote:
    Agency lecturers have to pay about £34 for their CRB and renew it regularly.

    Why?
    _____________________________________________________________

    They have unsupervised access to our children. I am a lecturer and have to renew my CRB regularly. I have no problem with having to do so.

    _______________________________________________________________
    _______________________________________________________________

    So, why should an innocent person have to PAY MONEY to prove his/her innocence? That, I think, was the very point dealt with by another posting:

    At 11:45am on 11 Feb 2011, Geoff wrote:
    It used to be that you were presumed innocent until proven guilty. Under legislation that has been passed over recent years you have been presumed guilty until such time as proven innocent

    ____________________________________________________

    PRECISELY! You want proof - you pay for it, not the poorly paid agency lecturer, already subject to abuse from the Institute for Learning and its doctrinaire attitudes.

  • Comment number 75.

    34. At 12:48pm on 11 Feb 2011, W Fletcher wrote:
    The CRB checks assume guilt until proven innocent - like a much of NewLieMore's legislation!

    If you try & invest, it is ASSUMED you are trying to launder money.

    If you want foreign exchange - you are ASSUMED to be guilty of something.

    If you want to buy or sell a house- you are ASSUMED to be a criminal.

    Welcome to Police State UK.

    Anyway as shown by a recent case a clear CRB proves NOTHING!

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Well put. And Spot on!

  • Comment number 76.

    24. At 12:28pm on 11 Feb 2011, Mike wrote:
    Typical left wing claptrap from the BBC "does it worry me".....oh we lost new labour, our masters, our saviours and our fathers, what are we to do? No more cotton wooling, no more depravation of our liberties under auspices of 'keeping us safe' and no more utter rubbish from a government and from a philosophy that stifles free speech, freedom of actions and freedom to do what you like but in a responsible manner.

    The BBC, New Labour, Unite Against Fascism and all the other left wing rubbish deserve our combined disgust.

    -----------------------------------

    And I, quite frankly, am disgusted at your comment. The BBC are only quoting words from the governments own bill, with the addition of the words "does it worry me". There will be many people that this Freedom Bill will worry, although from the tone of your comment it won't worry you. If the BBC disgusts you so much, why are you even bothering to comment on a board like this.

    You might like to note that New Labour were far from left wing and were the most right wing Labour government we have ever had.

    Getting back to the original question: I think the relaxing (not abolishing) of the CRB checks on volunteers who work with children is a good thing, until such time as it has been proved not to work. Just how are they going to give residents more control over CCTV and how is this going to help, and how is limiting police stop and search powers going to stop criminals following their vocation. As far as I can see this Freedon Bill asks more questions that it answers.

  • Comment number 77.


    41. At 12:59pm on 11 Feb 2011, Jason Mead wrote:
    6. At 11:55am on 11 Feb 2011, plainspeakit wrote:

    repeatit more like!



    OKAY - it does bear repeating!

    20. At 12:20pm on 11 Feb 2011, you wrote:
    Lewis Fitzroy (No.1) asks what is wrong: well, the question, Lewis, is WHO PAYS THE BILL?

    If authorities want information, THEY should be the ones to pay!

  • Comment number 78.

    The logic of some people is ridiculous. We were moving toward a state of too much intervention but the basic concept of CRB checking is perfectly sound.

    The fact that we can only weed out those who have been convicted does not negate the value of the checks! At least we keep the known offenders out of contact with the vulnerable! Do we really want the case where known paedophiles are allowed to work with our kids because it was against their 'rights' and the presumption of innocence, to check beforehand?!

    Such arguments are as ridiculous as saying that, since the police don't catch all criminals we should do away with the police, or that, since the determined burglar will always break in, we shouldn't bother to lock our doors!

    Please try to think!

  • Comment number 79.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 80.

    Question:

    How many people have been "caught" or excluded from working with children via the CRB?

    How many people have still managed to abuse children and have passed through the CRB without any problems?

    Answer those questions then make your decision as to whether it's a waste of time or not.

  • Comment number 81.

    This is a politically motivated idea to bring more people into the "Big Society" - whatever that means. By making it easier for people to be in contact with children it will increase the chances of more paedophile attacks.

    Yet another cost cutting idea from the Tories which could damage children similar to alot of their legislation so far. However, with this change it could be physical rather than financial.

  • Comment number 82.

    "61. At 1:36pm on 11 Feb 2011, Alastair wrote:
    No. Why? Because i'm not. Criminals get treated like criminals. Although getting 'treated' like a criminal these days seems to entail getting the vote and being put up in 5 star accomodation with 3 squares a day, games consoles, TV's, with people actually breaking in there to give them mobile phones."

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Wow. I think you've been staying in some pretty shocking hotels if you think that prison accommodation is that good. I've had some horrific hotel experiences over the years.

    The last time I stayed in a 5 Star hotel I was furious that the full room service menu wasn't available after 10pm and that my suits weren't cleaned and pressed by 7am as I'd requsted. They didn't do a very good job ironing my shirts either, but the complimentary bottle of wine was satisfactory.

    At least those in luxury prison could use their mobile phones. I had no mobile phone signal in my 5 Star hell hole and the Wi-Fi connection was incredibly slow.

    Whoever gives out those star ratings (especially to prisons) really needs a dose of reality. I mean the restaurant in the hotel ran out of salmon two mornings in a row!

  • Comment number 83.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 84.

    It's all very well worrying about the children.
    But who will speak up for agency lecturers ?

  • Comment number 85.

    Finally, they start to get something right!
    One comprehensive CRB check rather than paying for it every time you are 5ft away from a child. Schools not fingerprinting kids to let them borrow a book or eat lunch. People not having a criminal record for the rest of their lives on mere suspicion of have stolen a Mars bar aged 14. Councils not snooping through your wastebin and crooks not impounding your car for a ransom. What's wrong with that? Honestly.
    All they need is to shred the moronic Digital Economy legislation and stop Ofsted prosecuting working parents for looking after each other's kids. Then we can almost hope to become a normal country again.

  • Comment number 86.

    I am glad that the hold on innocent people's D'n'A is coming to an end, I certainly do not want the police holding on to my D'n'A just because they obtained it and therefore can keep it until such time they have to destroy it.

    I do not like the reason, 'well if you have nohing to hide, you have nothing to fear', have you seen the police in this country? Nothing stops them from placing the power in their own hands and becoming a law upon themselves. Who's to say that if they could not solve a very important crime, being pressured by the media for failing in the first place, that someone's D'n'A would not mysteriously turn up and be 'complete proof' they did it? Wouldn't be the first time the police have lied to find a suspect, then been caught for doing so.

    If your a criminal and have commited a serious crime (not something namby pamby like breaking a public order act by swearing infront of a PO) but more like theft, assualt or murder etc. Then your D'n'A can be stored because there's good chance you'll be a re-offender and it will speed up the time taken to solve cases. But as for innocent people, they should be left completely as that, innocent until proven guilty (then they can have their D'n'A, lol)

  • Comment number 87.

    In my teens I worked in a youth club. There were no checks.

    During the summer play scheme we had a volunteer who seemed to be spending too much time around the young girls. When we checked at a previous club he claimed to have worked at we found he was thrown out of it for inappropriate behaviour with young girls. Checks would have prevented this situation.

    Now we are back to no checks. Am I worried?

    You bet.

  • Comment number 88.

    65. At 1:43pm on 11 Feb 2011, in_the_uk wrote:

    60. At 1:29pm on 11 Feb 2011, RichardGrey wrote:

    It is a badly thought out cost cutting measure - It will mean that some people will be able to abuse children and vulnerable adults without check until they are caught.

    It was a cumbersome system - that could have been made far more effective by having a national database so that only one check was required rather than every time you changed job. Baby out with bathwater syndrome.

    I do hope it doesn't extend to CCTV reduction because where I live the crime rate plummeted and more crimes were solved. I certainly feel safer with CCTV than without.

    Mind you the longer the Condems last - the more unsafe I feel - not to mention poorer.

    ----------------------

    Do you campaign to shut churches? What about the abuse cases there?

    Do you want everyone with a backpack getting on a bus to be searched?

    Maybe we should just throw everyone in prison until they are proven innocent?

    Some measures of safety is needed but labour took it way too far.

    = = = = = = = = =

    What are you talking about????

    Clergymen and Priests had to undergo CRB checks - It had nothing to do with closing churches - only checking if said Clergymen or Priests had committed an offence

    If a policeman decides a person carrying a backpack onto a bus needs to be searched then searched they should be - nothing to do with EVERYBODY with a backpack.

    Nobody has said anything about throwing everybody into prison - though some in other HYS seemed to want to flog or hang children who were a little noisy.

    Sorry the CRB idea was good - but badly executed - There was no need for continual checks if changing jobs

    Frankly I'd sooner see universal CRBs applied than none - we are heading for none.

  • Comment number 89.

    What worries me most is the frightening decline in the number of adults willing to supervise chikldrens activities eg football, golf, scouts guides etc

    My experience is that events we have arranged with children have only suffered becuse of the fear of checks.

    There has been to many jobs created in Councils that are around elimination of all sorts of child matters. Too much beaurocracy too much waste and too much allowing of parents to resume their responsibilities.

    Isn't time we got back to the days of common sense not American based litigation.


  • Comment number 90.

    Hi1 proudtobeacumbrian, 2 plainspeakit, 1My point about the C.C.tv was not racist/ but to give people in Bradford/Luton some kind of protection against the new right wing groups who are getting stronger around the U.K. I have many friends who are muslim, I live between 4 mosques' and a madress {my landlord owns the local one} MrKhan "2 by not checking on people you make it very easy for some so called "volunteers" to groom children for they { perverted purpose } its only about the money when its not your children, {who are the target}, but not all Volunteers are bad or sad so some children could be lucky????

  • Comment number 91.

    31. At 12:45pm on 11 Feb 2011, blimeyoreilly wrote:
    This government seem to have no regard for young people/children - they remove funding for 6th form students put up University fees to astromonical levels and now show they have scant regard for the safety of children too.

    It is Bizarre that teachers - who are already monitored - need to have the CRB checks but adults who are not monitored as closely do not.

    They harp on about freedom for adults but what about the rights and SAFETY of children?

    --------------------------------
    Yes - it really does appear that they have an agenda for attacking Kids doesn't it - It's a good job that the courts are around to stop them in their tracks when it comes to the scrapping of the school building program.

  • Comment number 92.

    61. At 1:36pm on 11 Feb 2011, Alastair wrote:

    "...an easier ride to the criminal element..."...blah blah..."...from this move by the la-la liberals..."...blah blah..."...head in the clouds..."
    "...Do you think the state treats you like a criminal...?"
    "...No. Why? Because i'm not. Criminals get treated like criminals..."

    ....and there we have it....the daily mail mantra from someone who most likely lets others at the pub do their thinking, then spouts off plagerised opinion verbatim.

    Of course Alastair doesn't feel like a criminal - he's never had to undertake a CRB check. If he had bothered to review one he would most probably have a different opinion.

    Check it out for yourself al - then tell me (with a straight face) that you think I should complete one of these heavy-handed forms to take my son and his friend to rugby on a sunday morning. Unless the mantra is deep set and you're a stuck record lost to free will thinking, I'd be surprised if you come back and said the same thing.

  • Comment number 93.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 94.

    2. At 11:45am on 11 Feb 2011, Geoff wrote:
    "It used to be that you were presumed innocent until proven guilty. Under legislation that has been passed over recent years you have been presumed guilty until such time as proven innocent."

    CRB checks have been in place for many years for school teachers and anyone working closely to and/or closely with children....how many on HYS agree that CRB checks should be done on these people?

    HOLD ON A MINUTE BEFORE YOU ANSWER...we live in an 'innocent til proven guilty' society, so surely we should just take their word for it that they are are not paedophiles? Surely doing otherwise is presuming their guilt until they have to proven their innocence? Isn't that what many on HYS are barking on about? So, which is it? Do you want teachers to have CRB checks or not?


  • Comment number 95.

    Mike at #24, the general feeling here is that this is just an aimless and random whiny rant.

    Do you have any comments that actually relate to the issue? Or is this pearl of wisdom all we're going to get from you?

  • Comment number 96.

    And about time to. The more the state gets rolled back the better.

  • Comment number 97.

    At last, some common sense. The idea that every adult is a pervert and molester is one of the most pernicious campaigns ever waged in the name of increased paper circulation and higher viewer figures. Cases of child abuse are very rare, and the whole stupid expensive structure of checking, checking and more checking is just insane. It's no wonder that volunteer numbers are falling when every well-intentioned person is treated as a criminal.

  • Comment number 98.

    "The ConDems are slowly but surely removing all the checks and balances that have been put in place to protect people"

    No. They're removing the poorly thought out knee jerk reactions that pervaded Labours administration. The ones that assumed we were all paedophiles unless the government said otherwise.

    Question:
    How many people have been "caught" or excluded from working with children via the CRB?
    How many people have still managed to abuse children and have passed through the CRB without any problems?
    Answer those questions then make your decision as to whether it's a waste of time or not.


    You forgot a couple of questions.
    How many people have been prevented from working with children due to incorrect data or unsubstantiated allegations?
    How many people have had their lives ruined due to Labours policy of assuming guilt until proven innocent?

    I'm glad some common sense is appearing on the horizon again.

  • Comment number 99.

    The "Freedom Bill" has got nothing to do with freedom at all, it is a name deliberately selected by the government to cover a programme which allows perverts to work with children. It should be renamed the Perverts Bill.

  • Comment number 100.

    I wonder whether the people on here will be as supportive of this move when the first paedophile slips through the net and abuses children and the parents sue for failure to protect their child?
    Actually, the procedures in Scotland are now pretty good and more balanced than in England. Perhaps it would have been better to have looked at that system and refined the system in England rather than this move. Indeed, I would imagine that the first time a child is abused as a result of this move, this will be the exact argument put forward by their lawyers!
    The full checks have narrowed the options for paedos. The Catholic church is no longer the risk free option that it once was (although it's still a pretty safe option) and so the Government announces a new opportunity for paedos....that's how I read this move.

 

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