Determining whether PVG membership is required
PVG Scheme membership is required for anyone undertaking regulated work with children and/or protected adults. An applicant's role/job description should reflect whether the role is regulated work or not.
Regulated work is work done by paid staff or volunteers and is defined in the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act, 2007. This is relatively straightforward for regulated work with children, but for protected adults we will have to be sure that the work is a ‘welfare service' and is provided for people with ‘particular needs'.
If the post includes regulated work with children and/or protected adults, PVG Scheme membership and clearance by the Safeguarding Service is required before the worker is appointed.
All the forms and guidance required to apply for PVG scheme membership through the Church of Scotland can be downloaded from the Safe Recruitment area of the Church of Scotland Safeguarding Service website.
Alternatively, for those unable to complete digital forms, the Safeguarding Service can supply a recruitment package containing paper copies of the required forms.
Please see the tables in the Determining PVG Scheme Membership guidance document. The tables will help identify if an applicant for a paid or volunteer post will be undertaking regulated work with children, protected adults or both and needs to join the PVG Scheme.
16-18-year-olds overlap: is it regulated work with children or regulated work with adults?
The Protection of Vulnerable Groups (Scotland) Act, 2007 defines children and protected adults in a way that there is a deliberate overlap.
A protected adult is defined as an individual aged 16 years or over who is provided with (and thus receives) a type of care, support or welfare service.
It is possible for 16- and 17-year-olds to be both children and protected adults.
Consequently, some people, working as paid staff or volunteers, with 16–18-year-olds may need to join the PVG Scheme and have membership for working with children and protected adults.
The Safeguarding Service can provide further advice.
This means the provision of practical, personal or emotional support or advice and guidance with spiritual matters. There is an overlap for 16–18-year-olds who may be classed as either children or protected adults but it is usually obvious how this should be classified by the nature of the service provided.
A particular need is a specific requirement an individual may have arising from either physical or mental illness, or physical or mental disability which may disadvantage that person when compared to the rest of society.
The following individuals may have particular needs:
- Individuals with (temporary or permanent) physical capacity issues above and beyond the normal course of events, i.e., not including ailments which affect everyone from time to time such as colds or flu
- Individuals with (temporary or permanent) mental disorder (i.e., mental illness, learning disability, personality disorder or bereavement)
- Individuals with degenerative diseases
- Generally, individuals who suffer a prolonged impairment in doing ordinary tasks necessary to support their work or home life (rather like the DDA criteria)
- People with drug or alcohol problems
The following do not have particular needs by virtue of the following alone:
- People with debt problems
- People who do not have English as a first language
- People in detention
- The jobless, or otherwise economically deprived
- People with literacy or numeracy problems (although these may be symptoms of a condition which does give rise to particular needs)
- Friends or relatives of protected adults or individuals with particular needs