Volunteer Code of Practice Published

Volunteering England and the Association of British Insurers (ABI) have published a code of practice for volunteers .

The code was developed by the working group that was set up by Volunteering England and the ABI last year to address the problem of unnecessary red tape raised in Lord Hodgson’s report 'Unshackling Good Neighbours' last May.

It informs people that "volunteering is not a generally risky activity". There are seven points to the code giving volunteers guidance on staying safe and when to ask for advice:

1. Take care in whatever you do.

2. Think about your safety and the safety of others around you.

3. Involve other people.

4. Ask for help and information.

5. Be clear about what you are and aren’t responsible for.

6. Check your existing insurance policies to see what you are covered for.

7. If you are volunteering for an organisation you are probably covered by their insurance.

The ABI also revealed that the number of insurers that cover volunteer drivers had increased to 66 from 54 in March, meaning that 90% of all drivers were covered.

Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) certificates are set to become transferable after the Protection of Freedoms Bill 2012 gained royal assent earlier this May. This means that people will be able to volunteer using the same certificate as they do for employment reducing the number of repeat checks.