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Garda Vetting

As part of our commitment to support and promote volunteering Dublin City Volunteer Centre provides a Garda Vetting service for voluntary and community groups within our local area. Dublin City South Volunteer Centre is registered with the Garda Central Vetting Unit to provide a vetting service for small to medium sized organisations who wish to vet their volunteers, but who do not have access to an Authorised Signatory within their own organisation.
 
What is Garda Vetting?
 
Garda Vetting is the process by which a form is submitted to An Garda Siochana Vetting Office asking them to check if a person has any convictions and/or prosecutions, successful or not, pending or completed, recorded against their name. 
 
What is an Authorised Signatory?
 
An Authorised Signatory is a person who has completed the training supplied by the Garda Central Vetting Unit and is authorised to act as the liaison between the organisation requesting vetting and the Garda Central Unit. 
 
Do volunteers need to be vetted?
 
At present, there is no legal requirement to vet volunteers, although this may be introduced at some point. Many organisations choose to make it a policy to vet volunteers who work with children and vulnerable adults and/or are responsible for finances. However, most organisations recognise that not all volunteers may need to be vetted. For example, volunteers working in administration, doing practical work, providing professional services or a range of other volunteer opportunities may not need to be vetted as they are not interacting with the clients or directly involved in finance and will never have an opportunity to do so. 
 
It is up to the organisation to decide whether or not a volunteer position requires vetting. This should be assessed while the organisation is in the process of developing the role description for each individual volunteer position. Whether the volunteer is being vetted or not it is important to conduct reference checks as these provide vital character reference information that is not available in a Garda vetting check. We will supply you with in-depth information on the process.
 
Will An Garda Siochana vet our volunteers?
 
The Garda Central Vetting Unit already provides a volunteer vetting service for most large community and voluntary organisations throughout the country via an ‘authorised signatory’ within that organisation. This means that a member of staff within that organisation has been trained to be the link between the Garda Vetting Unit and the organisation. However, the Central Vetting Unit does not currently have the resources to provide this service to smaller organisations. In response to this, the members of Volunteer Centres Ireland have worked with the Garda Vetting Unit to train a designated staff member in each volunteer centre in each county to act as an Authorised Signatory between local voluntary and community organisations and the Garda Vetting unit.
 
What does this mean for your organisation?
 
If your organisation is based in Dublin city and does not have access to an Authorised Signatory and you require Garda Vetting, Dublin City Volunteer Centre can process the vetting paperwork for your volunteers. This paperwork is then forwarded to the Garda Central Vetting Unit. If you are not based in our area, one of our fellow Volunteer Centres can provide the service for you. To find your local Volunteer Centre please go to www.volunteer.ie
 
How does it work?
 
For details on the process please contact us by email or by calling the Volunteer Centre on 01 473 7482.
 
In general to avail of this service:
 
Your organisation will be required to register with Dublin City Volunteer Centre. Registration with us is free!
 
Your organisation will be required to meet with/attend training about the Garda Vetting process 
 
Your organisation will be expected to have certain policies and procedures in place before commencing Garda Vetting e.g. confidentiality policy, data protection policy, Garda Vetting policy. Copies of example polices can be provided to assist you with this process.
 
Your organisation will be required to sign an agreement giving Dublin City Volunteer Centre the authority to act on your behalf as an Authorised Signatory for Garda Vetting purposes.