Backcheck 2.0 Verifications
- About Us
Vulnerable Sector Checks and the need for them can often be confusing. Organizations tasked with incorporating these checks into their background screening policy are challenged by the time, effort, and monetary expense associated with the check and often don't fully understand its need and limitations.
A Vulnerable Sector Check (VSC) or Vulnerable Sector Verification (VSV) may ONLY be requested for a person who wishes to take a volunteer or paid position working with children, the elderly, the disabled, or another vulnerable group. The position should be one of direct care, authority, or trust, and generally in an unsupervised (or limited supervision) setting. Only the police service of jurisdiction where the applicant lives may conduct a VSC and it will assess the position before conducting the check. Should this type of check be requested and your position does NOT meet these requirements, part of your check may NOT be completed.
If you do NOT require a Vulnerable Sector Check, learn more about the Criminal Record Check.
A VSC is a three-part check designed for people who volunteer, or work in position of trust or authority over children or another vulnerable group. It’s comprised of:
A VSQ is a search for sexual offences and can only be initiated by a Police Service. A VSQ is an option that is selected when a Criminal Record Check is conducted by police using CPIC. 1 The VS query option is disabled in the mandatory CPIC query channels the RCMP assigns to police agencies for conducting CPIC checks on behalf of third-party companies. If a third-party company indicates it can provide a Vulnerable Sector Check service, the claim should be scrutinized. The purpose of the VSQ is to initiate a process that may result in the potential disclosure of specific sealed conviction(s) listed in the Criminal Records Act.
These consist of 60 offences that are current or historical. A conviction is sealed when an individual applies to the Parole Board of Canada and receives a record suspension (formerly referred to as a pardon). Disclosure of sealed convictions is subject to Ministerial approval and occurs in less than 0.005% of all VSQs initiated annually. 2 Access to Information Requests have established that of the over 2 million Vulnerable Sector Queries initiated by police services each year, less than 0.005% result in a positive match as confirmed by fingerprints. A subset of this percentage constitutes the number of eventual disclosures that the Minister approves.
Organizations are challenged to weigh the benefit that might accrue from obtaining an eventual disclosure versus the intractability of a requirement that can only be met by sending applicants to a police front counter.
The youngest person in the current database is 30 years old. That means that a search for a pardoned sex offence on anyone younger will not produce results for a VSQ. If you have now determined that a VSQ is not necessary, then your organization does not need to conduct a Vulnerable Sector Check. New entrants to the database will occur and while it is unlikely that any will be younger, it is possible. This is why Sterling Backcheck will continue to monitor this aspect on a frequent basis to keep this important fact current.
Need More Information?
Check out the white paper on the Vulnerable Sector Query.
Have employees or volunteers who will be working with vulnerable groups? Get started with our Vulnerable Sector Checks . Click the option that best describes you.
Job candidate? Click here