‘Could you tell me if children’s entertainers need a CRB criminal record check in the UK? If so, which one and how to go about it. Also where can I get public liability cover cheaply?’
The CRB has now changed to be called a DBS check (Disclosure and Barring).
Although a CRB or DBS check is not required by law for self employed performers, local authorities and some schools do insist that magicians show them the relevant certification before they are allowed to entertain children.
This can pose a problem. The law says that it’s not required and it could be an offence to apply for one, whilst many clients insist that magicians have the checks..
From the .gov guidance:
Eligibility is based upon the nature of the duties for the specific position. To be eligible for a DBS check a position must be:
• Listed in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 – this entitles the position to a Standard level check; and if
• Prescribed in The Police Act 1997 (Criminal Records) Regulations entitles the position to an Enhanced level check.
Eligibility can also exist if the role involves regularly caring for, training, supervising or being solely in charge of persons under 18 and or vulnerable adults (within the meaning of section 59 of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006).
From the information you have given the role of a children’s entertainer is not listed in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974 and is not Prescribed in The Police Act 1997. The role of a children’s entertainer does not appear to involve regularly caring for, training, supervising or being solely in charge of persons under 18 and or vulnerable adults. Therefore eligibility does not appear to exist.
Furthermore as you are self-employed current legislation does not allow the self-employed or individuals to apply for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check on themselves. This is because they cannot ask an exempted question of themselves. Only recruiting organisations can ask the exempted question so they can assess an applicant’s suitability for a role as defined in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975.
For your information as the parents are present, then they are responsible for the children not yourself removing eligibility where it states does the role involve regularly caring for, training, supervising or being solely in charge of persons under 18 and or vulnerable adults.
Please note the submission of DBS checks for ineligible positions would be considered unlawful under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Under Part V of the Police Act 1997 an application for a DBS check must be accompanied by a statement by the registered person that the certificate is required for the purpose of asking an exempted question.
If an individual knowingly asks for a DBS check for a post which is not included in the Exceptions Order 1975 to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (ROA), they would be in breach of Part V, section 123 of the Police Act, in that they are committing an offence by knowingly making a false statement for the purpose of obtaining or enabling another person to obtain a certificate under this part.
For more information on eligibility guidance please follow the attached link:
With reference to liability cover, I personally recommend you check out joining Equity. Equity deal solely with performers so they are very knowledgeable with reference to all aspects of performing arts and the legalities. Also, they are recognized worldwide, and once you join they are only a phone call away, should you want any advice. The cost of Equity membership is tiered to your income as a performer, so it’s a great way to get public liability insurance cheaply and all the other benefits and protection the union has to offer.