Checks and safeguarding
There are important checks which will be undertaken before you are matched with guests arriving under the Scottish Super Sponsor scheme.
To host someone through the Super Sponsor scheme, you will need to undergo:
- an enhanced disclosure check
- a local authority system checks (which include a social work and local authority record check for child and adult protection risk or concerns)
- a property check
The local authority will undertake these checks before your accommodation is put forward for matching as part of the Super Sponsor scheme. The reason for these checks is to establish that there are no known safeguarding or visible accommodation issues. Further information on safeguarding checks, including process maps, will be published in subsequent updates of this guidance.
There may be instances where people displaced from Ukraine have signed up for the Scottish Government's Super Sponsor scheme and then go on to self-match with a Scottish host via the internet or a charity. This can cause a safeguarding issue.
If guests go directly to the host’s accommodation on arrival in Scotland, relevant property and/or disclosure checks may not yet be complete. If you are a host that has not undergone the appropriate checks or you become aware that someone has matched privately with a displaced person with a Super Sponsor visa, please contact your local authority so that all safeguarding checks can be carried out as a high priority.
Hosts cannot receive the £350 ‘thank you’ payment unless they have been formally matched through the Scottish Super Sponsor scheme, including undertaking the required checks.
Enhanced disclosure checks and safeguarding
All adults over 16 years residing in the host household must agree to an enhanced Disclosure Scotland check, including an identification check, when they register for the Super Sponsor scheme where they are providing accommodation in their own homes.
Individuals offering accommodation via a separate property, such as a second home, must also agree to an enhanced Disclosure Scotland check, including an identification check, when they register for the Super Sponsor scheme.
If you have already registered under the Homes for Ukraine scheme, you may have been subject to a different level of disclosure check, but will need to agree to an enhanced Disclosure Scotland check if this has not been done.
These enhanced disclosure checks are to ensure there is safeguarding in place to ensure displaced people arriving from Ukraine have welcoming and safe accommodation. This application will be done together with local authority partners. Disclosure Scotland will process these applications as a priority and there will be no fees. The local authority will contact you with the necessary documents to progress these checks.
An enhanced disclosure includes:
- unspent convictions
- relevant spent convictions
- unspent cautions
- a statement about whether the applicant is included in the children's or adult's lists, or being considered for inclusion in the list(s)
- other relevant information held by the police
- details of prescribed court orders and sex offender notification requirements. If the disclosure/safeguarding checks are deemed unsatisfactory the you will not be considered for matching.
Further details on Disclosure Scotland checks can be found in the local authority guidance
Property checks and home visits
It is a requirement for all hosts to agree to a home visit by a local authority official or contractor in order to evaluate the suitability of the accommodation provided before a guest is placed with that host.
The visits will ensure the accommodation provided is of an approved standard, meets the minimum requirements to live in, and there are no concerns of overcrowding.
Before your property is used to host under the scheme, local authorities must ensure that:
- the safety of gas and electrical supplies and appliances are checked
- there is adequate heating (space and water heating)
- sanitary facilities are in a reasonable state of repair and proper working order
- there are washing and cooking facilities
- the property is wind and water tight – which means no rising or penetrating damp
- there are interlinked alarms (smoke, heat and carbon monoxide). Where there are no interlinked alarms due to supply issues, ensure the property has a single point of detection and that there is a plan for when interlinked alarms will be fully installed
If the local authority check or home visit results in accommodation not meeting the criteria outlined in the quality assurance housing checklist within the Homes for Ukraine Guidance for Local Authorities, local authorities will determine whether any action could be taken by the host to make the property meet the criteria. As a host you will not be obligated to make or allow these improvements but if you choose not to do so, the property will not proceed to the matching stage.
It may be necessary for your local authority to prioritise the order in which they perform home visits in order to match guests with appropriate accommodation. As a result, it may take longer before your accommodation is visited.
More information about home visits, including what is being checked, can be found at: Super Sponsor Scheme and Homes for Ukraine guidance for local authorities, which includes a version of the quality assurance housing checklist.
Security checks for displaced people from Ukraine
The Home Office carries out identity and security checks on displaced people using any of the visa routes. In order to be granted a visa, they will have passed these checks.
Report a safeguarding issue
If you, or anyone you know, has any concerns about potential abuses of the scheme or people involved in the scheme, you should report them at the earliest opportunity to the local council.
If you are concerned that a crime has been committed, or if there is a threat of a crime being committed, this should be reported immediately to the police.
Any child or adult at risk of harm, regardless of their resettlement scheme or route of entry, should be referred immediately to the local social work department and/or Police Scotland.
Additional information relating to the protection of people of all ages arriving from Ukraine can be found in our public protection guidance.
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