Adults would rather ignore a lost or injured child than be accused of being a pedophile, according to campaigners who believe mass vetting over the past decade has actually left young people more at risk by creating an atmosphere of mistrust. New figures by The Daily Telegraph show that 32million Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks have been carried out in the past decade, at a cost of 1.5billion.Originally intended for professionals who work closely with children, background screening is now used for anyone involved in community work. The Manifesto Club, a libertarian group that campaigns against increasing state interference in everyday life, questions how many children and vulnerable adults have been protected by the vetting regime and argues that CRB checks are no guarantee of safety.
“The current system of employment checking has become excessive,” said a Home Office spokesman. “This is why we are scaling the regime back to common sense levels so that the public are properly protected but the number of unnecessary checks is substantially reduced.”