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Do we HAVE to CRB check Father Christmas?

(20 Posts)
BadHair Mon 16-Jul-07 22:29:32

I'm helping to organise a Christmas event for my town, and we want to have a Father Christmas in a grotto. The grotto would be open (no dark corners!), parents would be present and the FC would not be alone with children. We know who we want to be Father Christmas but before we ask him we want to see if he has to be CRB checked.

I know it would be good practice for him to be checked, but he would never be unsupervised and would be fully aware that he can't have children on his knee etc.

Any ideas?

CristinaTheAstonishing Mon 16-Jul-07 22:31:27

A CRB check is only £30-40 or so and takes 2-3 weeks. But I really don't think it should be needed given the circumstances you describe.

charliecat Mon 16-Jul-07 22:31:40

I would imagine so ...and I am a paranoid mother but no sitting on santas knee, even if you want to Thats sad really isnt it?

Tortington Mon 16-Jul-07 22:33:31

i think your last sentance said it all - it would be good practice - but as santa is't going to be alone with the child and the parent is going to be present and there is no Knee sitting - a CRB isn't required by law.

MotherFunk Mon 16-Jul-07 22:38:13

Message withdrawn

BadHair Mon 16-Jul-07 22:51:16

Thanks for replies. It's not against the law to actually sit on Santa's knee, but any Santa who actually put a child on his knee would be leaving himself open to all sorts of allegations.

The person we have in mind is very well known locally, and as he'd be doing us a favour by being FC I would feel awkward asking him for a CRB check in the next breath, IFKWIM. Also, I don't have any doubts about his integrity, just wondered how we stand legally.

As long as we're not legally required to CRB him, I think we'll just make sure that there are always other people present.

Hathor Mon 16-Jul-07 22:55:46

Hmm makes you wonder what crimes the CRB check on Santa might bring up.
Trespassing down people's chimneys?
Flying a sleigh while under the influence of sherry?
Making elves work on a Bank Holiday?

EscapeFrom Mon 16-Jul-07 23:04:35

Hell yeah!

He has magical powers, for God's sake, heaven knows what he could get up to while you are all sleeping!

PeachesMcLean Mon 16-Jul-07 23:07:11

By BadHair on Mon 16-Jul-07 22:51:16
Thanks for replies. It's not against the law to actually sit on Santa's knee, but any Santa who actually put a child on his knee would be leaving himself open to all sorts of allegations.

Hasn't the world gone mad.

Blu Mon 16-Jul-07 23:19:56

If it's a big thing and for charity, you eally ought to ask for CRB check.

It's a 'Duty of care' issue for your visitors. You know him and have no doubts - can you make that decision on behalf of people who don't know him? These days i would be v surprised if anyone being a FC in a public place would expect to do it without a CRB check - he wo't take it personally, buut will know it is a formality and good practice.

chocolatekimmy Wed 18-Jul-07 20:22:52

I think you should do the check. You are taking personal responsibilty for helping to organise the event so do it as part of your responsibility to ensure the safety of children.

If something is discovered then you will be glad you did it. If nothing is discovered then you will be reassured that you did.

Not sure about the nothing can happen bit - theres the thought of some pervert getting a thrill out of the close contact with children I guess. The thing is a CRB check doesn't cover everything - like those who have never been caught or prosecuted for something untoward.

noonar Wed 18-Jul-07 20:30:39

pmsl, hathor.

funnypeevesculiar Wed 18-Jul-07 20:33:33

hathor & escape from.
Personally, I'd get it done - more because otherwise some paranoid mother is bound to ask & kick up a fuss - better in this sort of situation to put yourself unassailably in the right!

lljkk Wed 18-Jul-07 20:50:05

Private CRB is £50 (about £35 to CRB, and about £15 to an umbrella body registered with them). It can take up to 8 months to get results (although less than 2 months is usual). £50 is a lot to fork out if it's a one-off charity event.

eca Wed 18-Jul-07 21:15:52

DEFINITELY GET IT DONE! Any person coming into contact with children and young people in a formal/organised setting should have it done. He may not be able to do anything to harm them there and then, but - worst case senario - he could approach them at a later date with a "I was/am santa, you can trust me..." line. I know it sounds dramatic, but the horrible reality is that paedophiles use such means to gain contact with children and yp.

I understand you know and trust this man and he will be doing you a favour, but you need to put checks in place. What if next year another man comes along who you don't know so well and protests about being checked because this santa wasn't? If you don't want to offend your santa, just say it's something you have to do now etc.

Sorry, don't mean to rant. Am a youthworker in rl and one of the things I feel really strongly about is child protection issues. Sadly so many organisations are still really slack .

islandofsodor Wed 18-Jul-07 23:35:46

A CRB check is free for volunteers so there is only the umbrella body fee to pay

lljkk Thu 19-Jul-07 10:33:05

IslandSodor: Who would BadHair Day go to as their umbrella body? Any umbrella body? Asking in case it comes in helpful for volunteer work we do.

Remember CRB recommends that everyone be CRB checked for the specific role and setting, although you could decide to accept a CRB check from elsewhere with 3 forms of appropriate ID to verify Name, DOB and address.

RibenaBerry Thu 19-Jul-07 11:01:47

For other people reading this and thinking about their own charities,I think that it might be helpful to bear in mind that CRB checks are not as easily obtained as some people seem to think. It is not just a question of paying the fee and getting the individual's agreement. You have to fall within one of the statutory headings allowing you to ask for a check in the first place.

It should be possible for child protection issues, BUT you will have to comply with all sorts of obligations about how you hold the documents, maintaining confidentiality, etc. You can get into a lot of trouble if people's records are not held securely and in absolute confidence. If you're thinking about a check, get advice from the umbrella body on all your obligations.

Sad state of the world that you even have to think about it, etc, etc

lljkk Thu 19-Jul-07 11:09:36

Oh yes, that's true, you have to comply with the CRB code of practice in how the info is treated (loads of rules) and interpretted. For instance, recruitment notices have to state that a criminal record is not necessary a bar to participation.

WayneMullins Thu 22-Dec-16 11:26:00

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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