What is a Vulnerable Sector Check?

July 20th, 2022
School Bus Vulnerable Sector Volunteering

Vulnerable Sector Checks

You just applied to coach your daughter’s hockey team, and are told that you need one of these. You are not sure what this is or how to go about getting one.

What is a vulnerable sector check?

A vulnerable sector check is a type of criminal background check required for many jobs and volunteer positions where people will be in positions of “trust or authority” over vulnerable populations such as children, people with disabilities, or the elderly. It is a combination of a regular police record check of the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) national databases of criminal offences, combined with a check of local police records in the place where an applicant lives, and a check to see if an applicant has ever received a record suspension or pardon for sexual offences in Canada.

How do I get a vulnerable sector check?

Your employer or volunteer organization must provide you with a written request letter to obtain a vulnerable sector check. This letter needs to include:
• A description of your position
• The name of the organization making the request
• Details about the children or other vulnerable people you will be working with
• If this is a volunteer position, the letter needs to confirm that you will not be paid for the position
You need to submit this request letter to your local police service in the community where you live in order to start the process. Only local police services are authorized to initiate a vulnerable sector check.
The police service will have you fill out a form and provide identification. They will conduct a name based search of criminal databases. In some cases they may ask you to obtain an RCMP fingerprint based search in order to confirm your identity. You may need to obtain the fingerprint based search at an RCMP accredited fingerprint agency.

What if I need to provide fingerprints as part of the vulnerable sector check process?

If your local police service provides you with a letter asking that you obtain fingerprints as part of the vulnerable sector check, then you will need to go to an RCMP accredited fingerprint agency that is also authorized to provide fingerprints for them specifically. Remember that you must always go to your local police service first to apply for a vulnerable sector check as only your local police can initiate the process. You must bring the request letter from the local police with you to the fingerprint agency. As well, you must also bring a volunteer confirmation letter if the criminal record check is for a volunteer position. In addition, you will need to provide two pieces of valid government issued identification.

How can Red Seal Notary help?

Red Seal Notary is accredited by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to submit digital fingerprints for the purpose of vulnerable sector checks. For more information, see our fingerprinting page for identification requirements and locations or contact us at 1-888-922-7325.

Helpful Links

RCMP – Types of Criminal Background Checks

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