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​Section 816: Criminal Record Checks

Date issued: 15/05/2006
Revision Date: 01/10/2010

Purpose

Criminal record checks (CRCs) are part of a prudent and consistent approach to the Government of Saskatchewan employment process which helps:

  • Maintain public confidence in the public service;
  • Ensure the safety of our employees, clients and stakeholders;
  • Ensure that public funds are securely administered.

Policy

The Government of Saskatchewan protects the public interest in the delivery of public services by requiring that all employees will have provided a satisfactory criminal record check, and that it will have been submitted prior to initial employment.  In certain circumstances, satisfactory criminal record checks may also be required by employees subsequent to the most recent one submitted.  Furthermore, employees are required to report charges or convictions as soon as reasonably possible, should they occur during the course of employment with the Government of Saskatchewan.

Policy Guidelines

Positions requiring a Criminal Record Check

1. All public service positions require a current and satisfactory basic CRC prior to offer of, and appointment to, the position.

  • A current employee in a position previously designated as not requiring a CRC will not be required to submit a CRC while s/he remains employed in that position.  If s/he applies to a different position, or is being considered for a transfer or demotion, if new job duties are assigned or his/her position is reclassified, that position will be evaluated by the Ministry, in consultation with the Public Service Commission, to determine whether sufficient risk exists such that a criminal record check will be required for that employee, in which case, s/he will be required to submit a satisfactory CRC prior to offer and appointment, assignment or reclassification. 
  • Incumbents of CUPE positions will be required to submit a satisfactory CRC, in accordance with LOU 2009-02.  

2. In addition to the basic CRC, a vulnerable sector check is required prior to offer of, and appointment to, a position determined by a Ministry, in consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team) as being entrusted with the care of, or intervention with vulnerable clients.    

  • If the most recent CRC submitted did not include a vulnerable sector check, any employee seeking subsequent appointment into such a position will be required to submit a satisfactory vulnerable sector check prior to offer of and appointment to the position.

3. A CRC is required for positions that interface with third party service delivery systems where the third party requires a satisfactory CRC prior to giving employees in these positions access to the required data or systems. 

  • If the most recent CRC submitted is older than the term of the renewal cycle required by the third party or is not the required CRC type for the position (i.e. vulnerable sector), employees seeking subsequent appointment into such a position will be required to submit a current and satisfactory CRC prior to offer of and appointment to the position.

Types of appointments, placements and roles requiring a Criminal Record Check
The following types of appointments, placements and roles require a CRC:

  • Permanent full-time;
  • Permanent part-time;
  • Non-permanent;
  • Temporary or casual;
  • Personal service contract;
  • Fee for service contract;
  • Term;
  • Students (including practicum students);
  • Labour service;
  • Order-in-Council; and
  • Volunteers and individuals in unpaid work placements.

Exceptions
In exceptional circumstances when an employee is hired in a short-term position where the need to hire is emergent and immediate, making it unreasonable and impractical to request a CRC, the Ministry, in consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team) may determine that the employee is exempt from the requirement to submit a CRC for this appointment. 

In these exceptional circumstances, Ministry management must consider the job duties and make necessary accommodations to mitigate risks to the Government, its employees and clients.

Criminal Record Check Process
Individuals not currently employed by the Government of Saskatchewan (Executive Government) must submit a satisfactory CRC before offer of and appointment to a position.  If the CRC is unavailable in a timely fashion, the appointment may proceed, in consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team) and conditional on submission of a satisfactory CRC.  The candidate will then be required to meet that condition as soon as possible thereafter. 

A CRC consists of a criminal record check performed by local police against their records and the national database housed in the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) or by the RCMP against CPIC.  The CRC will indicate whether or not a criminal record may exist or if there are criminal charges pending.  If the CRC indicates that a criminal record "may or may not exist", an individual shall be required to provide fingerprints to confirm their identity and satisfactorily complete their CRC requirements. 

Satisfactory Criminal Record Check
A satisfactory CRC is either:

  • An indication from the police that no criminal record/charges exist or;
  • An indication from the police that a criminal record/charge does exist and has been assessed and determined by the Ministry, in consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team) and others as required, to be not relevant to the position.

Assessing relevance of criminal convictions or charges identified on the Criminal Record Check
In assessing the relevance of criminal convictions or charges identified on the CRC prior to appointment, the Ministry, in consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team) and others as required, will consider the following factors:

  • The relationship of the offence(s) to the level and nature of the position assignment;
  • The number and nature of the charges/convictions;
  • When the offence(s) occurred; and
  • What the person has done in the intervening period.

The Government of Saskatchewan will not change the employment status or refuse to employ a current employee because s/he has been charged with, or convicted of, an offence of a type which does not pose a risk to the Government, considering the duties of the position the employee occupies or is seeking.

Assessing relevance of charges and/or convictions subsequent to appointment
As soon as an employee becomes aware that s/he is charged with an offence under:

  • The Criminal Code of Canada;
  • The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act; and/or
  • Provincial statutes governing their Ministry; s/he shall report such charge, as soon as reasonably possible, to Ministry management through the normal chain of command.

Further, if an employee is convicted of an offence at any time, the employee is required to report such conviction, as soon as reasonably possible, to Ministry management through the normal chain of command who will work with the PSC (HR Service Team), to review the details and assess the relevance of the conviction. 

Failure to report the charge or conviction as soon as reasonably possible may result in disciplinary action up to, and including dismissal.  The need for immediate action within the workplace will be determined in accordance with the Government of Saskatchewan Corrective Discipline Policy.   

In assessing the relevance of charges, the appropriate Ministry manager is responsible for prompt investigation of the circumstances of the alleged misconduct by an employee to determine the appropriate response that balances the interests of the employee and the interests of the Ministry, pending the outcome of court proceedings.  This investigation will be done with on-going consultation with the PSC (HR Service Team), senior management, and others as required. 
The absence of legal culpability regarding the alleged misconduct does not eliminate the Ministry's obligation to investigate and/or address it.

Contracts with external service providers
Contracts with external service providers are to include a requirement that their staff submit satisfactory CRCs.

Privacy

CRC information will only be collected by, used, or disclosed to, individuals who need the information to perform the duties of their position. The amount of information shall be limited to that which is reasonably required to achieve the purpose.  Individuals who have been given access to the information are responsible to:

  • Treat the information as confidential and shall not further disclose the information to any other party;
  • Use the information only for purposes of providing a service or making a decision;
  • Safeguard the information from further access (whether intentional or unintentional).

Payment for Criminal Record Checks

  • External applicants pay for their own criminal record checks;
  • Current employees without CRCs pay for their CRC for subsequent appointment to a different position if the determination has been made that sufficient risk exists such that a criminal record check will be required;
  • Current employees without CRCs who are moving to another position as a result of employer-initiated action such as reassignment, reclassification, involuntary transfer or demotion will have their CRC paid for by the Ministry. 
  • Current employees without a vulnerable sector CRC who are applying for positions that require a vulnerable sector record check pay for their own CRC;
  • Cyclical updates of CRCs required by third parties will be paid for by the Ministry;
  • Payment for criminal record checks submitted by CUPE employees will be made in accordance with LOU 2009-02.    

Authority

Public Service Act
Public Service Regulations
PS/GE Agreement Article 26.1A
CUPE LOU 2009-02

Application

This policy applies to all workplaces of the Executive Government and all employees of Executive Government, volunteers working on behalf of Executive Government, persons employed on personal service contracts and fee-for-service individuals under contract with Executive Government. The policy does not apply to individuals working outside of Executive Government, or Government-appointed board members.

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If you have any questions or require more information please contact:

HR Service Centre

hrsc@gov.sk.ca

Phone: 1-877-852-5808 or 306-798-0000

Fax: 1-877-852-9219 or 306-798-9966

HR Service Centre Fax Cover Sheet

2100 Broad Street, Regina, SK, S4P 1Y5

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