Please see the full guide below on everything you need to know about DBS Applications, ID Verification and becoming a Club Welfare Officer
Q: What is a DBS?
A: A (DBS) is a Disclosure & Barring Service check. Volunteers in eligible roles within football are subject to an Enhanced DBS check and a check is also made against the Government’s national list of those people barred from working with children (the Children’s Barred List).
Q: Who needs a DBS check?
A: Everyone aged 16 years or over who undertakes any unsupervised roles with children in regulated football activity. These roles could be managing, training, coaching, supervising. They include giving advice or guidance on well-being, caring for children or driving a vehicle solely for children on behalf of a club or organisation.
Anyone performing these roles MUST obtain a DBS check:
- Football Coach working with Under 18 players (this includes coaches in open-age football with 16/17 year old players) – this includes ALL coaches, whether they have assistant in the title or not
- Football Team Manager working with Under 18 players (this includes those working in open-age football with 16/17 year old players)
- Club Welfare Officer
- Under 18 Chaperone e.g. for tours with overnight stays for Under 18s
- Regular Club Driver only for children (not private arrangement between parents)
- First aider/medic working with Under 18s
- Referees (youth football)
Q: Are DBS applications still paused due to COVID-19 restrictions?
A: The process was paused as a consequence of government lockdown restrictions but it is now back up and running.
Q: Are DBS Checks extended due to COVID-19?
A: The date of DBS checks that are due to expire between 1st October 2020 and 31st May 2021 will be extended by one calendar year on 1st February 2021.
This follows the action that was taken in April 2020 for checks that expired between 1st March 2020 and 31st September 2020 to be extended by one calendar year.
For the avoidance of doubt, only checks expiring between 1st October 2020 and 31st May 2021 are to be extended. DBS checks that were extended 1st March 2020 - 31st September 2020 are not to be extended further.
Once Government restrictions are lifted, clubs will need to ensure that all individuals involved with the club have a valid DBS Check.
Q: How do I apply for a Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check?
If you are a volunteer with an affiliated club you should contact your Club Welfare Officer.
Q: How do I apply for a Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) check with Hampshire FA if I am not linked to a Grassroots Football Club which is based in Hampshire?
A: If you are not linked to a football club, email email@example.com and our team will guide you through the process.
Q: What information will I be required to provide?
A: The applicant will require a minimum of three forms of ID such as a valid Driving Licence, Birth certificate, Passport and recent utility bill, credit card or bank statement. For details of acceptable forms of ID please see HERE.
The applicant (new or renewal) goes through process of submitting the required information online and then submits the application for ID verification. The applicant should bring the ID to a face to face meeting with a suitable ID verifier (Club Welfare Officer for those attached to affiliated clubs or with a County FA DBS verifier/League Welfare Officer for applications made via Hampshire FA). The verifier will submit details of the ID to progress the application.
Q: What is the payment process?
A: Payment is made online upon completion of the verification process by the applicant. Payment is made by debit or credit card or via PayPal as per the choice of the applicant. The cost of the application for volunteers is £10. Once payment is made the application will then proceed through the various stages prior to completion and certificate issue.
Q: How long does the process take to complete?
A: The process normally takes around 2 weeks, but this can vary depending on the number of applications being processed at any time. Applications that are delayed beyond 60 days can be chased with the DBS service.
If your check does reveal some information, this does not automatically exclude you from working with vulnerable groups in football. Every disclosure is assessed individually, taking into account the person’s age at the time of any relevant incident; the time expired since the conviction, the way the court dealt with the crime and other salient information.
Q: Can I actively volunteer whilst waiting for my DBS application to become accepted by the FA?
A: The Enhanced DBS check and check of the Children’s Barred List allows the FA to make informed decisions about the suitability of people who are seeking a voluntary role in football. Anyone volunteering or working in an eligible role, directly working with children and young people – such as coaches/managers, referees, first aiders and welfare officers – MUST have an in-date, FA accepted DBS Check as part of responsible recruitment practice before they work or volunteer within football.
Please note that receipt of a DBS certificate does not mean that the check has been accepted by the FA this is only confirmed once the DBS check is shown as accepted on the Whole Game System.
Q: Do you need a DBS check when working with adults? (open age clubs)
A: Yes, if an adult team has any players registered that are aged 16 or 17 then Managers, Coaches, Assistants and all volunteers who meet DBS eligibility will need to obtain an accepted FA DBS.
Q: Is the Referee DBS process different?
A: Referees aged 16 or over should commence their DBS application online using the Hampshire FA Organisation Pin 102267, as per the guidance explained earlier in this document, and should contact Andy.firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for ID verification.
Q: What is face-to-face ID verification?
A: Face to face verification is where a DBS applicant takes their ID to a meeting with an authorised DBS verifier in person.
Q: Who can verify documents?
A: Club Welfare Officers are the main point of contact for any applicant linked to a grassroots youth football club. An individual who is not linked to a club can request to initiate a DBS check via Hampshire FA (via the process outlined above) and will then meet with a member of Hampshire FA staff or a League Welfare Officer to complete the ID verification process.
Club Welfare Officers cannot verify their own DBS application and should, therefore, complete an application via Hampshire FA.
Q: Can someone at my Club become an ID Verifier?
A: To become a Club verifier you can contact FAchecks@thefa.com or tel: 0115 969 4618
Q: I am registered as a volunteer with a grassroots football club in Hampshire. I require a DBS check with The FA as I meet eligibility and have commenced my DBS application with my club. Who verifies my DBS application?
A: If your Club has a fully qualified CWO or assistant CWO in place then the CWO/assistant CWO are your points of contact for your DBS verification. Club Welfare Officers who are fully qualified to carry out the CWO role/responsibilities in accordance with their training requirement must register as a DBS verifier by emailing FAchecks@thefa.com FA Checks will then send the CWO guidance notes to register as a Club DBS verifier and provide the CWO with an Organisation Pin and Secret Word that is unique to the Club. Once the CWO has registered with FA Checks and validated their account, they will then be in a position to verify DBS documentation.
Q: My club is a new club and our CWO is not yet qualified, how do we carry out DBS checks?
A: Until the CWO becomes qualified, those personal? Requiring a DBS check should make their application using the Hampshire FA organisation pin (as explained earlier).
Q: Can face-to-face ID document verification now be carried out?
A: Yes. Post-lockdown the Government guidance allows you to travel outside of your home, irrespective of distance, providing you return the same night or stay within your ‘support bubble’, follow Government guidelines on social distancing, hand and respiratory hygiene.
Q: How else can I minimise risks whilst checking ID document verification during the Covid-19 pandemic?
A: To minimise the risks of spreading Covid-19 during face-to-face ID document verification, please ensure you adhere to Government guidelines:
• Check with the venue about the outdoor space at which you choose to meet, as it may have specific guidelines you are required to follow e.g. a one-way system.
• We recommend you wear disposable gloves. In addition, ensure you follow Government guidelines on practising good hand hygiene. Clean your hands thoroughly with soap and water or by using alcohol-based hand gel where handwashing facilities are unavailable, before and after handling physical documents, or touching other surfaces at the venue. • Ensure you practice good respiratory hygiene, including covering your mouth and nose with, your bent elbow or tissue if you cough or sneeze, ensuring you immediately dispose of any used tissues in plastic bags you have taken for disposable items and wash your hands.
• Do your best to avoid touching your face. The virus does not enter the body through the hands. Your hands could pick up the virus and then it could enter the body through touching the nose, mouth and eyes. Therefore, care should be taken not to touch the nose, mouth and eyes during or after handling documents until the hands have again been washed.
Q: What if I or the person I am meeting for the ID document verification meeting feels unwell and/or is displaying any symptoms of possible Covid-19 infection?
A: Do not go ahead with the ID document verification meeting if either party is feeling unwell and/or is displaying possible Covid-19 symptoms, or is concerned they may have come into contact with someone who has the virus. Only re-arrange to complete the verification when any self-isolation period has ended, you feel well, or have been advised by an NHS practitioner that it is safe to do so.
Q: Is it safe to handle all other people’s documentation, and if so, what’s the best way to do this?
A: Some research on how long Covid-19 lasts on surfaces does suggest that the risk of infecting others, or contracting Covid-19 through handling physical documents is low. In order to reduce the risk of transferring Covid-19 between parties, follow all the guidelines above.
Q: Why does the verification have to be face-to-face? Why can’t a video call be allowed where both individuals can see each other, and documents can be shown online?
A: Consideration was given to making use of videos calls in line with DBS guidance. However, The FA, like some other national governing bodies of sport decided against this option, because: a) Having tested it, it was obvious that it would not be possible to ensure that every document shared in this way would be clear enough for identification purposes; and b) The DBS requires any organisation using this method, to subsequently ensure they have viewed all original hard copy documents, as soon as face to face verification was enabled. The FA decided this would place an additional burden on the voluntary workforce.
If you require a DBS Verification to confirm your documents, please email Jackie.Binnington@HampshireFA.com (or, Andy.Moisey@HampshireFA.com if you are a referee). All details submitted will only be used to assist in ID Verification requests.
How do I get started?
Go to https://fadv.onlinedisclosures.co.uk/Authentication/Login and select REGISTER from the login screen and enter the information requested, including:
Org Pin: 102267
Your Full Name: Enter your full name.
Email: Enter your own email and confirm it by entering it again.
Click Next Step
Secret word if required is: Winklebury
Once registered, you can log in using the above PIN, your email address and password created as part of the registration process and commence your online CRC application. You will be asked for your National Insurance, Passport and Driving Licence numbers (if you hold these documents) so please ensure you have this information ready.
Please ensure that you provide your FAN (FA Number) in the Personal Reference Number Field.
Once you reach the ID verification stage, please contact Referee Development Manager, Andy.Moisey@HampshireFA.com to arrange to complete this process.
Documents that can be used in support of your application are as follows:
- Valid Passport.
- Biometric Residence Permit (UK).
- Driving Licence (UK) (full or provisional) Isle of Man/Channel Islands and EEA either Photo card or paper licence.
- Birth Certificate (UK and Channel Islands) – issued within 12 months of date of birth – full or short form are acceptable including those issued by UK authorities overseas, such as Embassies, High Commission and HM Forces.
- ID Card for foreign nationals.
- HM Forces ID Card (UK).
- Firearms Licence (UK).
- Adoption Certificate (UK and Channel Islands).
Please note that if you cannot provide any of the documents above, you must provide five from the list below:
- Current Driving Licence Phot card (full or provisional) – All countries outside the EEA (excluding Isle of Man and Channel Islands).
- Birth Certificate – (Issued after the time of birth).
- Marriage/Civil partnership certificate.
- Bank/building society statement (UK) – Issued in last 3 months.
- Mortgage statement (UK) – Issued in last 12 months.
- Bank or building society account opening confirmation letter (UK) – issued in last 3 months.
- Credit Card statement (UK) – Issued in last 3 months.
- Financial statement, for example pension or endowment (UK) – Issued in last 12 months.
- P45/P60 statement (UK and Channel Islands) – Issued in last 12 months.
- Council tax statement (UK and Channel Islands) – Issued in last 12 months.
- Utility bill (UK) – not mobile telephone bill.Issued in last 3 months.
- Benefit statement, for example Child Benefit, Pension (UK) – Issued I last 3 months.
- Central or local government, government agency, or local council document giving entitlement, for example from the Department for Work and Pensions, the Employment Service, HMRC – not HMRC National Insurance Number notification. Issued in last 3 months.
- EEA National ID card (Must still be valid).
- Cards carrying the PASS accreditation logo (UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands) (Must still be valid).
- Letter from head teacher or college principal (UK – for 16 to 19 year olds in full time education – only used in exceptional circumstances if other documents cannot be provided (Must still be valid).
There is no cost to you as a referee to complete the process. If you need any further advice on this matter, please contact Andy.Moisey@HampshireFA.com.
Please note that due to COVID-19, once your DBS has been verified, the DBS checks are being reviewed nationally – and therefore, the time frames from verification to you receiving your DBS Certificate are currently unknown.
New volunteers must not work with children until their DBS is completed and accepted by The FA and aligned to an individual’s FAN on the Whole Game System.
If clubs with open-age teams do not have a Welfare Officer and have, or are likely to have, 16/17-year-old registered players, we strongly suggest that you appoint and train a Club Welfare Officer and adopt safeguarding policies and procedures to safeguard those young people who are under 18 – this may not currently be an affiliation requirement but it may become mandatory in future and taking action now will demonstrate your club’s commitment to safeguarding the welfare of young players across the game.
The Welfare Officer role:
• Review current practices
• Promote Safeguarding awareness and training
• Ensure compliance with safer recruitment practices including initiating and verifying DBS checks for club volunteers
The type of person who makes a good Welfare Officer:
• Always puts the young person’s welfare first
• A good communicator
• Common-sense approach
• Willing to learn and seek advice
• Is over the age of 18
To qualify in the role of Welfare Officer, the individual must have:
• An FA accepted DBS check
• Completed the FA’s online Safeguarding for Committee members course HERE
• Completed the FA’s online Safeguarding Children Workshop (due to be launched April 2021) HERE
• Completed the FA’s online Welfare Officer Workshop HERE
For further information about the role of Club Welfare Officer see Section 5 HERE.
Hampshire FA Safeguarding and Welfare Website
FA BEST-PRACTICE AND GUIDANCE NOTES – THE COMPLETE DIRECTORY
FA SECTION 3 - SAFER RECRUITMENT AND DBS CHECKS