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Under the Act, any employer or employment agency that employs individuals or engages volunteers who have access to children or vulnerable people will have to register with the National Vetting Bureau (NVB) as a “relevant organisation” and appoint a “liaison person”, who themselves must be vetted, to co-ordinate vetting applications.
The Act sets out procedures for organisations to follow when making a vetting application to the NVB and outlines the statutory rights of any workers being vetted.
As with the current voluntary vetting system, it will be a matter for the relevant organisation, not the NVB, to consider and take into account the information disclosed in a vetting disclosure when assessing the suitability of a person for the position for which they have applied. In addition to vetting new employees, certain current employees who have not previously been the subject of a vetting application, such as teachers, will have to be retrospectively vetted.
It will be an offence to engage a person to do relevant work or carry out activities relating to children or vulnerable adults unless that person has been subject to the vetting procedures. Sanctions for failure to properly vet employees will include fines of up to €10,000 and/or imprisonment.
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