These days it seems every employer in the country is conducting criminal checks. If you have been fingerprinted for a criminal charge, even if the charge was absolute or conditional discharge, withdrawn, stayed or dismissed, then there will be a red flag.
Once a red flag is there, the employer usually requires an RCMP file to see what the charge is. There have been huge delays in producing the RCMP files because of the increased demand.
Since these delays have become an issue for so many Canadians, it seems the Federal Government is trying to encourage more digital fingerprinting machines at the police stations which will speed up the process of producing RCMP reports. These RCMP reports are also needed for obtaining a Pardon.
Here is a recent article entitled “RCMP hope background checks go from months to minutes”:
OTTAWA – The federal government is offering encouragement — but no money — in a bid to get police forces across the country to buy fingerprint scanners that would speed up criminal record checks.
The government said Tuesday that coaches, volunteers and child-care workers will have access to faster, more efficient police checks through technology developed by the RCMP, which maintains a national database of criminal records.
The Canadian Press reported in April that some churches and volunteer groups had stopped screening for potential pardoned sex offenders such as former hockey coach Graham James due to newly tightened rules on police database searches.
With an individual’s signed consent, police used to routinely release a record of criminal details directly and quickly to prospective employers or volunteer groups.
Now, that individual must submit fingerprints and wait several months for record details — a time lag that means employers are rejecting such applicants right off the bat.
The new fingerprint scanning machines, already in use in over 20 communities, would reduce the time needed to screen Canadians for work with children and other vulnerable people, said Public Safety Minister Vic Toews.
Last year the RCMP improved its Real Time Identification System to allow police services across the country to electronically submit fingerprints for verification.
But Toews said it’s up to provinces and local municipalities to buy the scanning machines, which cost between $5,000 and $15,000 apiece.
“Essentially this is a matter that falls within provincial jurisdiction,” Toews told a news conference at the Ottawa police station. “It’s something that the provinces and municipalities and local organizations determine that they need for their own purposes.”
“There’s no legislated requirement federally to do this. But the RCMP provides the service and we want to provide that service in a timely fashion.”
With the new technology, verification could take as little as five minutes if the person’s fingerprints do not match a criminal record or pardoned sexual offence on file.