Birmingham & Black Country

Wednesbury children's activities contract axed over crime checks

Sandwell Council Image copyright Google Maps
Image caption The council said it had to make sure "all safeguarding rules are met"

A contract to provide summer activities for children has been cancelled as staff did not have the proper criminal records checks, a council has said.

Several members of Sport Wednesbury staff running activities in the West Midlands town did not have appropriate checks in place, Sandwell Council said.

It said it had now arranged for its youth service to run activities.

Sport Wednesbury said every staff member used was currently in possession of an enhanced DBS check.

The Disclosure and Barring Service replaced the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) scheme in England and Wales.

Sport Wednesbury had won the contract to run classes for a second time this year.

But council cabinet member for leisure services Richard Marshall said: "It came to the council's attention that several members of Sport Wednesbury staff running summer holiday activities at Brunswick Park did not have the appropriate DBS checks in place.

"These are a safeguarding requirement when working with children and should have been arranged by the organisation running the activities in line with their own child protection policy."

Mr Marshall said the council had to make sure "all safeguarding rules are met" and it acted as soon as it "became aware of this issue".

He said: "We have now made arrangements for the council's youth service to continue running the activities for children to enjoy for the rest of the summer holidays."

Asked how many days staff without checks had worked and how many children they had come into contact with, the head of Sport Wednesbury, Richard McVittie, said he could not answer because he was in discussions with the council.

Mr McVittie said in his view it was not clear that any activity requiring a person with a DBS check had been carried out by someone without one.

He said every member of staff used, paid or unpaid, was currently in possession of an enhanced DBS check.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites