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Departmental Vetting

Volume 478: debated on Thursday 26 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what procedures his Department follows for checking the criminal records of employees; and if he will make a statement. (213128)

All Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) employees and contractors/consultants are subjected to criminal record checks as part of the national security vetting process. The FCO has direct links to the police national computer, which shows both spent and unspent convictions.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what percentage of successful applicants for jobs in his Department are subjected to a criminal records check; how many (a) successful applicants and (b) criminal records checks there were in each of the last 10 years; how many successful applicants were found to have a criminal record after a criminal records check took place in each of the last 10 years; whether the selection of successful candidates to be subjected to a criminal records check is random or targeted; and if he will make a statement. (213148)

All successful applicants for jobs at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office are subject to criminal record checks as part of the national security vetting process. Further information in respect of the number of successful applicants and those found to have a criminal record after a criminal records check could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.