Children and Young Persons

Part of Church Representation and Ministers Measure – in the House of Commons at 2:59 pm on 18th June 2019.

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Photo of Victoria Atkins Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women 2:59 pm, 18th June 2019

I am able to give my hon. Friend that reassurance. I do not for a moment pretend that we have reached perfection. Through his involvement in the Home Affairs Committee, he will be aware of the Public Accounts Committee reports into the workings of the DBS and the length of time that digitisation and so on has taken. I monitor that issue very closely in my capacity as the Minister with responsibility for DBS, albeit that it is an arm’s-length body, and I am satisfied that what we call the aged list is reducing at an acceptable rate—I am, however, impatient; I would like it to be faster —and that the DBS in Liverpool has been operating with great efficiency in recent times.

The basis of the order is so important. It is to ensure that children and vulnerable people are safe with the people who work with them. We have seen, with many recent allegations in the context of vulnerable adults, how vital it is that people who work with vulnerable adults, perhaps in care homes, are of suitable character and history to work in such a responsible role.

I am delighted to say that I will be writing to my hon. Friend on the specific point he raised with me, because international data sharing is complex.