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Armed Forces: Cadets

Education written question – answered on 25th February 2013.

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Photo of Alex Cunningham Alex Cunningham Labour, Stockton North

To ask the Secretary of State for Education

(1) what disciplinary procedures relating to child protection he has put in place for adults working with the cadet forces taking part in the national military skills and ethos programme;

(2) what recent steps he has taken to ensure that the appropriate priority is awarded to child protection and safeguarding in cadet units.

Photo of Elizabeth Truss Elizabeth Truss The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

All schools must have regard to statutory guidance from this Department on safeguarding, “Safeguarding Children and Safer Recruitment in Education”. That guidance covers the issue of volunteers working with children—for example in school cadet units, which the Department's military ethos programme will expand.

In addition, from 2013-14 (date to be announced) any organisation that permits an unsupervised volunteer to start working regularly and closely with children will have a legal duty to check that the volunteer is not barred from such work. In addition, organisations can require an enhanced criminal record check. Any organisation that removes a person (staff or volunteer) from such work because of risk of harm to children must refer that person to the Disclosure and Barring Service for possible barring. These duties apply equally to the four MOD sponsored cadet forces (The Combined Cadet Force, Sea Cadet Corps, Army Cadet Force and Air Training Corps). Disciplinary procedures are an internal matter for these voluntary youth organisations, and fit with wider MOD safeguarding regulations.

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