Friday, 13 May 2016

Sexual & Abusive Predators - Disqualification by Association

What does it mean?

Disqualification under the Childcare Act 2006 - Updated February 2015

The arrangements set out in the guidance are additional to the arrangements in place to safeguard and promote the welfare of all children set out in Keeping Children safe in Education (KCSIE), the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and in Working Together to Safeguard Children.

The Childcare Disqualifications Regulations 2009

Disqualification Criteria
Section 2 / Point e :

The criteria for disqualification under the 2006 Act and 2009 Regulations include those set out in the list below:

e.         living in the same household where another person who is disqualified lives or is employed (disqualification ‘by association’) as specified in regulation 9 of the 2009 Regulations

See link below for full government document and guidance:

Statutory guidance is issued by law; you must follow it unless there’s a good reason not to. 

See link below for further details:

Please also see:

Debbie Alcock’s Article here:
Stopping Disqualification by Association is Madness

Please also see her book here: http//

And I totally agree with Debbie.

Stopping Disqualification by Association is not just madness, it is absolutely foolhardy and irresponsible by all individuals and agencies involved with safeguarding children.

But I wish to take this further based on my safeguarding, child protection and exploitation work:

Sexual and abusive predators are extremely manipulative individuals. They will seek out their prey and spend days, months and sometimes years grooming their victim as well as family and friends surrounding their victim. Often victims do not even understand or recognise that they are, or have been groomed; until they are sucked in so deep it is impossible to get out.

By the time they realise what has been, and is, happening they will be living with so much fear that some will never be able to tell or disclose the abuse they are suffering. Perpetrators will use grooming; gaslighting, coercion and control to convince their victim that everything is tickety boo. Perpetrators use lies, fear, threats and gaslighting to ensure their victims keep their secrets.

Secrecy, silence, lies, fear and “no one will believe you if you tell” are a perpetrators “best friend”.  In fact they are the “best friend” of any abusive perpetrator. That is what they depend on. That is why they spend months and years grooming everyone. Love bombing and gifts help to keep the victim quiet and loyal to their groomer and perpetrator. A victim of any abuse but especially sexual, will find it almost impossible to cut loose from their predator. Remember many victims will be reliant on their predator.

Consequently, some victims will cover up for their abuser due to fear, threats or even physical violence. Some victims will not even know or realise they are living with a perpetrator or abuser. Some victims may not have been told that they live with a registered sex offender. The sex offender is a good liar, remember.

I worked on several such cases when I was a nursery manager. One victim had no idea until her house was raided and he had moved on to his next victim and a five year old disclosed at school. Another victim lived with so much abuse and fear she didn’t even realise she needed to disclose. Another case I worked on was where the perpetrator had been married three times, each time seeking out a younger partner with younger children. You see very young children are often unable to disclose in language only behaviour. Sadly, throughout my long career of over 30 years in education, I have worked in some very challenging settings and on some very sad and difficult cases within child protection and safeguarding.

So “Stopping Disqualification by Association” is actually more than madness if we are hell bent on safeguarding children. If we are serious about safeguarding children from sexual predators and abuse Disqualification by Association should actually be increased not reduced or stopped. Signing a declaration will not stop these narcisstic, sociopathic, psychopaths from seeking out vulnerable individuals whom they can groom, but it goes some way to helping. It also means that if there is to be a case heard in law and an individual has lied on their declaration there is a case to be heard.

Remember: the statutory guidance is issued by law; and you must follow it unless there is good reason not to.

In my professional opinion you would need “a very good” reason not to want an individual to declare in a written statement to your childcare organisation or school that they live with a registered sex offender.

And as a mother I would want to know that my child was safe is any childcare setting and that the staff had done everything possible to ensure my child was safe. I would also want to know that if an applicant or member of staff was living with a registered sex offender that those staff had followed the law in asking for a declaration. Predators will do anything possible to get to a child. Partners of predators may even gather the information for the sex offender. We must never forget the Vanessa George case and serious case review. Vanessa George worked in a nursery and took photographs of babies and young children and forwarded them to pedophile/s and a pedophile ring. Vanessa George, if you like, was the perpetrators stooge. She was gathering the information for the predator/s. There are victims out there, who through fear, will also gather information and photographs for predators.

Those that are not registered sex offenders are out there and are slipping through the net as I write this and child abuse of every description is happening in every street, it could be happening right now next door to you. So, in order to protect our children to the very best of our ability we need to speak up and out about this insidious crime and not be afraid to tackle it head on. If we do not shout about it with the confidence of professionals with a “duty of care” to safeguard children then I believe we are complicit in covering up for these devious individuals who have no conscience.

Please view my LinkedIn Profile for verification of my background and work here: 

You can find the government consultation here:

The consultation closes on 1st July 2016 be sure to complete before the closing date.



  1. I completely agree Elaine - it is hard if you are caught up in this and do not realise the implications - as most likely they will have been drawn into this without even really understanding why or how this happened.
    However surely everyone who works with children would want to protect those children and would want to actively do everything they can - even if at the cost of their personal relationship (ie they stop the relationship) or at the cost of leaving their their childcare employment (ie they leave their job)

    To me it is completely baffling why anyone would knowingly put children at risk. It is a bit like not using a car seat because they have never had an accident and it only happens to other people.

    We must all do everything we can to protect the children - and to support those who have been caught in the trap of those who are using them to gain access to children and young people

  2. Thank you, Penny for your comment and taking the time to read my post. We so need further indepth training for those who are making such decisions as this. Understanding grooming, coercion, control and gaslighting is imperative if we are to safeguard children and go someway to beginning to put obstacles in the way of these vile perpetrators who will do anything possible to have access to vulnerable adults and children. Sometimes I feel I am banging my head against a brick wall; no one is listening let alone hearing. Thank you again for commenting.