Background Checks by Sterling Volunteers

Anne Arundel County has selected Sterling Volunteers to perform a Level 3 background check on volunteers applying for membership with AAACERT. This is a standard, nationally-recognized background check approved by the County. The Level 3 check reviews national databases (to include the DOJ Sex Offender Database), courthouse records for the county in which you reside, and a criminal record search in the counties you have resided in for the past 7 years.

You must receive a CLEAR indication in all searches made by Sterling Volunteers to be considered eligible for volunteer service to the County. Otherwise, membership will be terminated and all membership fees refunded.

When you apply for AAACERT membership, Anne Arundel County Office of Emergency Management (OEM) will be notified, and they will facilitate the sending of a link from the Sterling Volunteers website, with a note attached. You must respond to the e-mail within 10 days of receipt. The application is on line; the website is secure. The County recognizes the value of volunteers and shares the cost with the applicant. The County negotiated the price to $38.00; AAACERT applicants pay half or $19.00. The payment is made on line as part of the application process. The background check is good for 5 years and may be shared by you with other volunteer organizations requiring a background check.

You, as the applicant, receive the background check report, as does Anne Arundel County OEM. AAACERT does not have access to your application or the detailed results. AAACERT simply receives an e-mail from OEM that you have successfully completed the background check and are eligible for volunteer service to the County (or not) and the date of background check completion.

If adverse information is reported and the applicant believes it is incorrect, the applicant has rights under the federal Fair Credit Reporting Act to dispute the results with the consumer reporting agency. Neither OEM nor AAACERT has any additional information. If the applicant is found to be disqualified through a background check, he/she will be removed from the membership rolls and any fees paid will be reimbursed upon request. The background check process must be completed every five years.

NOTE: AAACERT accepts membership applications for those between the ages of 16 and 18. Background checks cannot be performed by Sterling Volunteers until you reach the age of 18, which is the minimum age required to volunteer for the County. Until you turn 18, you are welcome to be a member, participate in most training and some exercises but will be significantly limited in operational response.