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DBS Checks For Emergency Service Roles: A Quick Guide

DBS checks for emergency service roles

DBS checks for emergency service roles: a quick guide

The emergency services are a vital part of society. They protect us from harm, prevent disasters and help us feel safe.

Those who work for the police, emergency medical services or fire department have the lives of the public in their hands on a daily basis.

As such, it’s crucial that the right people are chosen for the right roles, and that appropriate safeguarding measures are in place.

Part of this means undertaking DBS checks on some applicants. Our quick guide explains the basics around DBS checks for emergency service roles:


Any role included in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 will be eligible for a DBS check.

This aims to ensure that employees who regularly work with children or vulnerable adults are suitable to do so.

In the case of the police, the legislation specifies that ‘persons employed for the purposes of assisting constables of a Police Force established under any enactment’ and ‘police and crime commissioners’ are eligible.

The police work closely with the general public, so it’s absolutely essential that job applicants are screened appropriately – and that usually means undergoing a DBS check.

Emergency medical services

As with the police, people who work in the emergency medical services generally come into contact with members of the public on a regular basis – so this naturally includes children and vulnerable adults.

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 includes ‘any office or employment which is concerned with the provision of care services to vulnerable adults’ and ‘healthcare professionals’.

Applicants for roles which fall under these descriptions will be required to fill out a DBS check form and undergo the necessary level of check.

Fire and rescue services

Given that they’re often in a position of trust and responsibility, most firefighters will be required to undergo a basic DBS check.

Some firefighters may undertake activities that require them to undergo an enhanced DBS check. For example, some may deliver emergency healthcare or teach fire safety awareness to children.

DBS checks for emergency service roles: a summary

If you’re looking to work for the police, the emergency medical services or the fire services, it’s likely you’ll require a DBS check.

These services provide vital support to the public, and it’s important that the communities they serve are able to retain confidence and trust in them.

Safeguarding measures help to make that possible, and DBS checking is a large part of that. The government provides more information in their DBS guide to eligibility.

If you’d like to know more about DBS checks for emergency service roles, please do get in touch with us – we’d be delighted to help.

Our blogs are advisory in nature and reflect uCheck Limited’s current thinking about best and common practice in the subjects discussed.

The information contained in our blogs have been provided for information purposes only. This information does not constitute legal, professional, or commercial advice. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure that the content is up to date, useful and accurate, uCheck gives no guarantees, undertakings, or warranties in this regard, or, for any loss or damage caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with reliance on the use of such information.

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