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Staff Screening Measures and Criminal Reference Checks

Licensees are required to obtain a vulnerable sector check from each employee before they begin employment, and each volunteer, and student, and any other person who provides child care or other services to a child who receives child care before they begin interacting with children at the child care centre.

For employees, the vulnerable sector check must be prepared no earlier than six months before the day it is obtained by the licensee.

For volunteers and students, the licensee may obtain a copy of a vulnerable sector check instead of the original document except if over six months have passed since the day the vulnerable vector check was completed, the student must also provide an offence declaration that addresses the period since that day. In no circumstances can the vulnerable sector check be older than five years.

For other persons who provide child care or other services to a child who receives child care, the licensee must obtain an offence declaration from the person; or an attestation from the person’s employers or the entity who retained the person’s services, confirming that:

  • The employer, person or entity has obtained and reviewed a vulnerable sector check from that person
  • The vulnerable sector check was performed in the last five years
  • The vulnerable sector check did not list any convictions for any offences under the Criminal Code (Canada) and listed in the Child Care and Early Years Act, 2014 (subsection 9.1 of the CCEYA)

No person under the age of 18 is required to obtain a vulnerable sector check.

If a person turns 18 years old while in a position where he or she interacts with children receiving child care, the licensee must obtain a statement that discloses every previous finding of guilt of the person under the Youth Criminal Justice Act (Canada) within one month after the person turns 18 years old, if the person received an adult sentence.

If a person turns 19 years old while in a position where he or she interacts with children receiving child care at a child care centre operated by a licensee or home child care premises where the licensee oversees the provision of home child care, the licensee shall require the person to apply to obtain a vulnerable sector check within one month after the person turns 19 years old.

An employee, volunteer, or student can begin interacting with children if they have not provided a vulnerable sector check if:

  • They apply to obtain a vulnerable sector check as soon as possible;
  • The length of time required to obtain a vulnerable sector check justifies it; and
  • Additional measures are in place to protect children who interact with the person until the vulnerable sector check is obtained.

A new vulnerable sector check is required on or before every fifth anniversary date of the most recent vulnerable sector check. In the years a vulnerable sector check is not required, individuals must sign an offence declaration.

An offence declaration is a written declaration signed by an individual that lists all of the individual’s convictions for offences under the Criminal Code (Canada), if any, during the period specified in the declaration.

The licensee can obtain an offence declaration from an individual any time throughout the year as long as it is no later than 15 days after the anniversary date of the previous offence declaration or vulnerable sector check. For example, a licensee may wish to collect offence declarations on the same date annually for each of their employees, volunteers, students and any other person who previously obtained a vulnerable sector check rather than the individual dates of each person’s previous vulnerable sector check.

Written policies and procedures are required to set out:

  • The process for obtaining a vulnerable sector check or attestation;
  • The process for submitting an offence declaration;
  • How the confidentiality of information contained in a vulnerable sector check, offence declaration or attestation will be protected;
  • How the information revealed in a vulnerable sector check, offence declaration or attestation will be considered and used; and
  • Additional measures that will be put in place when an individual is unable to obtain a vulnerable sector check before beginning work.

Filing cabinet with drawer labelled staff records

REGULATION

Section 59 to 65 of Ontario Regulation 137/15 - General