Information for employers

For central government, from 1 July 2015, the workforce restriction applied to new core workers.
For local authorities, from 1 September 2016, the workforce restriction applies to new core workers.

This means that it is an offence under the Vulnerable Children Act 2014 to employ someone subject to the Workforce Restriction who does not have a Core Worker Exemption.

From 1 July 2016, this prohibition has been extended to existing core workers within central government. From 1 September 2017, the prohibition will be extended to existing core workers within local authorities.

This means that, after this date, if the employer believes that a core worker they already employ has a conviction for a specified offence and does not have a Core Worker Exemption then they need to follow the suspension and possible termination process in Section 28 of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014.

Non-compliance may lead to criminal prosecution.

Employers of core workers are not required to conduct safety checking to proactively identify employees that may be subject to the workforce restriction.

If an individual is granted a Core Worker Exemption, it is (subject to conditions) no longer against the law to employ that person as a core worker.

However, it is still up to the employer to decide whether or not a person with a Core Worker Exemption is suitable for the role they are applying for.

Confirming a Core Worker Exemption holder’s status

You may need to verify that a current/prospective employee or student is a Core Worker Exemption holder.

We do not provide Core Worker Exemption certificates to exemption holders. The only way to confirm that an individual holds a Core Worker Exemption is to enquire against the Core Worker Exemption Register.

Use the Core Worker Exemption Verification Enquiry [PDF, 154 KB] form.

Please read the Core Worker Exemption Application Guidance for Employers [PDF, 184 KB] carefully before completing the form.

Confirmation of an individual’s status will only be released to employers or training institutions with the confirmed consent of the individual in question.

Completed application forms and supporting documentation should be:

CWE Advisor
Ministry of Social Development
PO Box 1556
Wellington 6140

If you have a query relating to the workforce restriction or associated Core Worker Exemption, email us at: or call us on 0800 462 511.