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You’re accused once therefore you’re fired…

Posted by James Hammerton @ 7:04 pm on 29 June, 2008.
Categories democracy and the rule of law, British politics.
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From a report in the Telegraph:

Mr Pinnington was fired from his post as deputy principal of Thomley Hall, a college for autistic children in Oxfordshire, when his employers requested an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check after he took the job in 2005.

The check revealed an unsubstantiated allegation of sexual abuse that was made against him by an autistic child he had cared for at another college in 2001. Police had investigated the allegation at the time and dismissed it.

Mr Pinnington, 59, is now challenging the right of Thames Valley Police to have disclosed the allegation to his new employer.

The case is a test of tough new vetting laws introduced after the murders of the Soham schoolgirls in 2002. The girls’ killer, Ian Huntley, had been able to get a job as a school caretaker despite having faced repeated allegations of sex offences involving underage girls.

Since then, all criminal allegations, whether or not they are ever proven in court, have been entered on to suspects’ police records and disclosed to future employers who request enhanced CRB checks.

Mr Pinnington’s lawyers are challenging that rule and arguing that unsubstantiated allegations should not be disclosed by the police unless there is good cause for believing them to be true.

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