This chapter has information to help local authorities assess enhanced disclosure information as part of people’s suitability to host under the Homes for Ukraine Scheme. A template is available to help local authorities record their decision making process.
Local authorities are responsible for determining a person’s overall suitability to host. Disclosure checks are one part of this process. Disclosure checks should be considered alongside other information relevant to suitability. This includes information about the accommodation and other safeguarding considerations as set out in the public protection guidance.
The factors set out in this annex are aimed at helping local authorities apply a structured approach to considering whether criminal history information is relevant to a person’s suitability. This guidance is not designed to be used as a risk assessment tool with a formulaic or “totting” up approach. It has not been approved for that kind of use.
Enhanced disclosure checks will contain limited information about the circumstances of a conviction. Local authorities may wish to consider whether any further information from other sources would help their assessment.
Local authorities may also wish to consider whether they need to have a discussion with the person(s) to whom the information relates. This can help them understand the circumstances surrounding the behaviour. It can put it into context or clarify any information that may be relevant to their assessment. This may also include considering whether the information the person provided needs to be independently verified.
Find more information about assessing criminal convictions on the Scotland Works For You guidance page.
Factors to consider
A local authority may consider that if a person has shown offending behaviour listed in the ‘Person checks’ guidance, then they’re unsuitable to be a host and provide accommodation in their home. This would apply to all adults living in the home.
Types of conduct
An enhanced disclosure check may include information about other types of conduct that may be relevant to a person’s suitability to host. The type of conduct may include, but is not limited to:
- any physical injury caused to another person either with or without use of a weapon
- domestic abuse including violence
- any use of force or coercion for personal gain or to achieve another person’s compliance
- violence towards animals
Inappropriate or harmful sexual harmful conduct
- inappropriate or unwanted touching, kissing, fondling, masturbation or oral sex
- possessing, creating, or distributing child abuse images
- establishing inappropriate relationships
- sending inappropriate text and/or photo communications via telephone or social media platform to another person
- engaging in grooming behaviours towards another person
- using sexualised or suggestive language towards another person
- forcing or enticing another person to undress
- forcing or enticing another person to have sexual intercourse or engaging in other penetrative activity
- forcing or enticing someone to engage in prostitution
- stealing money or personal property from another person
- misappropriating money
- extortion or bribery
Other abusive, harmful or inappropriate conduct
- any form of threatening or violent behaviour targeted at someone because of their gender or affects one gender disproportionately including physical, sexual, emotional and psychological abuse and violence
- domestic abuse
- bullying or intimidation
- discrimination or hate based on race, religion or belief, disability, sexual orientation or transgender identity
- aggressive or threatening language or behaviour
- stalking, harassment, manipulation or coercive control
- physical neglect or failing to provide basic care and welfare needs
- being involved in the trafficking and/or supply of drugs
- people trafficking
- exploitation for personal gain
There might be more than one area of concern depending on the facts and circumstances of each case. It also depends on the amount and nature of information contained on a check.
For further information see:
- national guidance for child protection in Scotland
- adult support and protection
- protecting children from harmful sexual behaviour
Relevance and proximity
It may firstly be helpful to identify what the local authority is concerned about happening in the context of providing accommodation under the Homes for Ukraine Scheme. For example, if a person has shown a capacity for violence this may indicate they could resort to violence in other circumstances.
Identifying and weighing up factors relating to a person’s past behaviour with factors which may be relevant in the context of hosting arrangements (including whether the hosting arrangements may present opportunities for a repeat of the past behaviour) may help local authorities in making a decision on whether the past behaviour is relevant and proximate in each case.
Factors relevant to the hosting arrangements may include, for example:
- whether the arrangement involves hosts (or other adults within the host accommodation) living in the same accommodation as guests or in separate accommodation. Certain types of behaviour may be more relevant and proximate if the host (or other adult within the host accommodation) will be living in the same accommodation as the guest(s)
- whether the guests include children or vulnerable adults
- whether the host (or other adults within the host accommodation) will be involved in providing support or assistance to guests such as driving them, or helping with the care of young children or elderly guests
Factors relevant to the past behaviour may include, for example:
- the seriousness of the behaviour. Behaviour that is not seriously harmful may be less proximate. The sentence imposed by the court who convicted the individual can be helpful as a guide to the seriousness of the offence. However, sentences should be treated with caution as it’s possible that serious offending may be dealt with by the court with a low-level penalty due to the specific circumstances of a case. Considering the facts and circumstances of each case will be important and further information may be necessary
- whether a child or vulnerable person was harmed or exposed to risk of harm as a result of the behaviour
- whether the behaviour occurred a long time ago or is recent. Behaviour that occurred a long time ago may be less proximate due to the passage of time. However, this is not true of all types of behaviour. For example, in relation to sexual offenders, the passage of time may not be a reliable predictor for future behaviour. So for sexual offending, the passage of time on its own should not overcome a high level of caution about sexual offending in potential hosts, even sexual offending as an adolescent
- whether the behaviour was a ‘one off’ or whether it has been repeated. Behaviour that involved an isolated incident may be less proximate, although this factor may weigh less where the behaviour was of a serious nature. A pattern of behaviour may indicate a person has difficulty in desisting from such behaviour. Desistence from offending should also be treated with caution where the past conduct was of a very serious nature, such as serious violence or sexual misconduct where:
o the person has lived abroad since and there may be no information on convictions they got while in another country
o the person has been serving a long period of imprisonment or has been under the requirements of a supervision order
o the person has been incapacitated for health reasons for a prolonged period
- whether the behaviour happened when the person was a child or adolescent, or whether they are now an adult who has not committed a crime for a number of years. Serious harmful offences in a person’s past should always be considered carefully
There is a problem
Thanks for your feedback