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FLORIDA APPLICANT EXPERIENCE - INSTRUCTIONS

This website is set up to allow Level 2 electronic fingerprint submissions by individuals for the following reasons: (1) for those seeking employment within Diocese of St. Petersburg (DOSP) entities, (2) for adults who wish to have unsupervised access to children, youth, and vulnerable adults in DOSP programs or on DOSP property (3) or for adults who wish to have the care, responsibility, or supervision of children, youth, or vulnerable adults in DOSP programs on DOSP property, (4) or for unsupervised access to or for the care, responsibility, or supervision of children, youth, or vulnerable adults in certain non-diocesan Catholic organizations.

Individuals seeking such access may include but are not limited to diocesan and other Catholic organizational employees, volunteers, contractors (aka vendors, licensees, consultants, and MOU personnel), federal/state/county employee resource personnel, or others. Level 2 fingerprint-based criminal history background checks are performed in accordance with the Diocese of St. Petersburg Policy for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults (“Policy”).

The Level 2 screening process requires electronic fingerprint submissions using the following screening applications. (1) The Federal Bureau of Investigation Non-Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS), (2) the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s (FDLE) Volunteer, Employee Criminal History System (VECHS), and (3) the FDLE’s Applicant Fingerprint Retention Notification System (AFRNP).

Individuals who wish to submit their fingerprints can schedule a fingerprinting session with a designated print-taker, submit a set of 10-print fingerprints to the FBI/FDLE, and have the results provided to their organization’s designated point-of-contact.

The term “individuals” includes the following designations:
  • Clergy – All priests and deacons who have faculties of the Diocese of St. Petersburg
  • Religious – All members of a religious community serving in the Diocese of St. Petersburg
  • Employees – Any lay individual who is employed by or engaged in ministry who is given payment for services (any form of compensation, whether monetary or otherwise) rendered in which the obligation to withhold for payroll tax (FICA, Medicare, and withholding) exists, whether part-time or full-time.


  • This definition shall include all such persons whether employed by the diocese, parish, school, early childhood center, nursing home, group home, or other diocesan organization controlled by or operated by the bishop. “Personnel” as defined herein, has reference only to the applicability of these instructions, an is not indicative of any agency or employment relationship between the diocese and the party whose compliance with these instructions is sought.
  • Covered Volunteers – Any unpaid person who has unsupervised access to or is engaged or involved in any diocesan institution and who is entrusted with the care, responsibility or supervision of children, youth, or vulnerable adults. This class of volunteers also includes individuals from organizations outside of the diocese such as Guardian Ad Litem volunteers or volunteers from non-diocesan Catholic entities such as Jesuit Catholic High School.
  • Contractors – This term is inclusive of all contractors (aka independent contractors), licensees, vendors, consultants, and Memo of Understanding personnel who are employees of or volunteers with firms or organizations employed by or contracted with DOSP. Resource personnel are individuals, firms, or organizations employed by or contracted by the federal government, the State of Florida or its counties. These individuals provide services to DOSP under federal/state/county administered programs such as Title One, ESE, etc. but they are not employees of the federal government or of the State of Florida, or any of its counties.
  • Employee Resource Personnel are employees of the Federal Government, the State of Florida or one of counties of Florida who provide services to DOSP under federal/state/county administered programs such as Title One, ESE, etc.
HOW TO SUBMIT PRINTS:
  1. Click the check box below certifying that you have read and understand the instructions
  2. Select a location, date, and time of your fingerprinting appointment
  3. Select your applicant type and job/volunteer location
  4. Provide personal data
  5. Complete and sign the Private Schools VECHS Waiver Agreement and Statement
  6. Provide Credit Card Payment Information (note: Federal/State/County Employees provide payment key)
  7. You will then see your confirmation information on your screen and you will also receive a confirmation email.
  8. Take your state/government issued photo ID to the printing site as proof of identification (Note: Foreign government ID’s are acceptable)
Results of your criminal history background check screening and adjudication (evaluation) will be provided to the diocesan entity (parish, school, early childhood center, other diocesan organization), or non-diocesan Catholic entity point-of-contact who is responsible for receiving background check reports from the Safe Environment Program Office (SEPO). No other organization except the SEPO processes and clears applicants for access to diocesan vulnerable populations.

Applicants deemed ineligible for employment or ineligible to become a Covered Volunteer because of information contained in their criminal history report will be notified in an interview setting by their respective organizational head (pastor, principal, organizational head, etc.). The organizational head will offer these individuals an opportunity to appeal their ineligibility decision to the diocesan Tribunal. Individuals who decide not to appeal their ineligible adjudications by the diocese cannot be employed by or volunteer within the diocese in any position. The option to appeal an ineligible diocesan screening decision is not available to individual contractors.

Persons deemed ineligible for employment or to volunteer but who wish to become eligible must file an appeal by completing the Decision Review Application provided by their organizational head during their background screening results interview. Those wishing to see a copy of the criminal history report upon which the ineligible determination was made must contact the Safe Environment Program Office and arrange to obtain a personal copy of their report. The FBI requires that its criminal history reports be picked up in person with a photo ID from the SEPO at the Pastoral Center. The Safe Environment Program Manager will discuss criminal history report contents with affected individuals, if requested, and assist them with the appeal process. Appeal processing instructions are included with the Decision Review Application and will be provided to affected individuals during the background screening interview with their respective organizational head.

Applicants who wish to challenge the validity of information contained in their FDLE or the FBI will be required to file a challenge with either or both of these law enforcement organizations. The Safe Environment Program Office will provide challenge forms upon request. Please note that it is not necessary to challenge the validity of information contained in a FBI/FDLE (AFRNP) Level 2 criminal history report in order to file an appeal of ineligibility.

If applicants do not dispute the contents of their criminal history records, they may submit their appeals as soon as they wish. However, they will be ineligible for employment or to volunteer in any position until they have successfully appealed the adjudication of their criminal history report by the diocese to the diocesan Tribunal.

The FBI does not allow contractor employers to see the background screening results of their employees who are screened by the diocese. Therefore, contractors will not receive the results of background checks on their employees. Instead, they will receive a clearance or non-clearance letter. A contractor employee applicant whose FDLE/FBI (AFRNP) Level 2 background screening results DO NOT meet the DOSP Minimum Standards of Moral Conduct will be deemed not eligible to provide products or services to the diocese on behalf of their respective employers. The contractor employee applicant will also be denied access to diocesan property as a service/product provider of their firm or organization.

In addition to notifying individual contractor employers of the background screening status of their employees, the SEPO will notify the contractor’s client(s) (parish, school, other diocesan entity, or non-diocesan Catholic organization).

Applicants who have not been notified of their successful completion of their background checks are ineligible for employment and cannot have unsupervised access to children, youth, or vulnerable adults.

Please contact the Safe Environment Program Office at 727-344-1611, ext. 5377 or 5303 or via email at ag@dosp.org or emh@dosp.org should you have a question about criminal history background checks performed by the Diocese of St. Petersburg Safe Environment Program Office.

The Diocese of St. Petersburg | 6363 9th Ave. North, St. Petersburg, FL 33710 | 727-344-1611 | communicate@dosp.org
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