This Will Go on Your Permanent Record: DBS Mark For Causing Offence

Today, it was revealed by We Are Fair Cop that an enhanced DBS check would show any accusations of ‘hate incidents’, enough to lose your job.

We Are Fair Cop, a campaigning organisation, revealed today that an enhanced DBS check – mandatory for anyone working around vulnerable individuals including teachers and care assistants – would show any accusations of committing a hate incident which had been levelled at you.

Despite not being a crime, not requiring evidence or a trial, and not allowing any appeal, such a mark appearing on a DBS check would be enough to get you fired.

What is a Hate Incident?

According to Citizen’s Advice, The police will record anything from verbal abuse to, ironically, malicious complaints, as a hate incident if the victim or anyone else thinks it was motivated by hostility or prejudice based on disability, race, religion, transgender identity or sexual orientation. Note that hostility or prejudice against biological sex is not covered.

Some police forces do, however, record hate incidents based on other personal characteristics. For example, Greater Manchester Police now recognises hate incidents directed at people’s appearance relating to subcultures such as Goths, Emos, Punks and so on.

The only thing required for an act to be registered as a hate incident is that somebody believes it was motivated by prejudice. Furthermore, the ‘victim’ does not even have to actually have to have the characteristic in question.

It is entirely possible, therefore, to have a third party report an innocuous act – say, a comment on twitter – directed towards an individual without any relevant characteristics as a hate incident and have you fired from your job.

To say this system is open to abuse is putting it extremely mildly.

Humberside police have been asked to comment on the situation, and this article will be updated should they clarify matters.

Dan Fisher is the Editor-in-Chief for Uncommon Ground Media.

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