As employers for vulnerable populations, it is crucial to ensure that the person you’re hiring will treat your clients with dignity and respect.
Currently, there are two separate registries to check for child abuse and adult abuse.
The Central Registry maintained by Arizona's Department of Child Safety is a confidential document that lists people with proven reports of child abuse or neglect.
The Arizona Adult Protective Services has a public registry that employers can review when deciding whether to employ a person to provide care for vulnerable populations. The purpose of the registry is to prevent vulnerable adults and children from being victimized by individuals who have been found through an APS investigation and due process, to have abused, neglected or exploited a vulnerable adult.
You can now search AZCareCheck on the Arizona Department of Health Services website to view a searchable database for alleged perpetrators. Learn more about the APS Registry.
The decision to hire a person listed on the APS Registry is solely up to the employer.
Arizona Revised Statutes require many professions to have an active fingerprint clearance card prior to or as a condition of licensure, certification, or employment. The Applicant Clearance Card Team (ACCT) at the Arizona Department of Public Safety, receives applications and reviews criminal history records of applicants to determine their suitability to receive a fingerprint clearance card, and periodically updates the status of current fingerprint clearance cards.
If an individual’s allegation of abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable adult is substantiated by APS, it is not a criminal conviction, so it will not show up on someone’s fingerprint clearance card. According to A.R.S. § 46-459, before being employed in a position that provides direct services to vulnerable adults or children, prospective employees must certify under penalty of perjury on a form prescribed by their employer whether an allegation of vulnerable adult abuse, neglect or exploitation has been made against the person and was substantiated.
As a manager, supervisor or employee, there are many warning signs of adult abuse. These signs can take many forms. Here are some examples:
“I’m a server at the only restaurant in town and Patricia comes in for breakfast every Sunday. When she came in last week, I saw that she had bruises all over her arms.”
This could be an indication of physical abuse and can/should be reported to APS.
What are some warning signs I would notice as an employer/supervisor to a staff member to which I would need to pay closer attention?
According to A.R.S. § 46-454 (A-D), there are many individuals who are required to report or cause reports to be made to a peace officer or to the Adult Protective Services Central Intake Unit. The reports should be made immediately by phone or online. Learn more about mandated reporters and who is required to report.