A client of mine has just got back a CRB check of an employee. Their client had only just made it a requirement of working together that all of my client’s employees have clean CRB checks.
So we now have the difficult situation of the employee having been employed for almost 2 years, but the CRB check coming back “dirty”!! The employee had been convicted in October last year – for possession of drugs! They kept that one really quiet!
If your employees need to have a clean CRB legally, i.e. because they work with children and vulnerable adults, then if it comes back not clean, you can dismiss, no matter what they were convicted of. There is no rehabilitation clause for these groups. And usually you would do this at the beginning of employment, so easier to dismiss anyway.
However, if it is not a legal requirement, then it can be trickier. You can decide that a conviction for drunk driving is not a problem for a book-keeper, for example, but a conviction for fraud would be!
If the conviction has expired, i.e. they are deemed to be rehabilitated, then you can’t refuse them employment on the grounds of having had a conviction (unless working with kids and vulnerable adults).
And would you want to? They could be more loyal and hard-working than those with clean CRBs, as they appreciate the chance to redeem themselves.
In this case, we will probably be moving to dismiss for some other substantial reason, as the conviction was for drug dealing last October.
I would be interested to know your experiences of CRB checks and whether anything interesting has come out in the wash!