King, NC (PRWEB) February 25, 2014
Peace of mind is important for pet owners who are considering allowing professional pet sitters into their homes to care for their pets while they are away. Pet Sitters International (PSI) takes the safety and trust of the thousands of pet owners who search its Pet Sitter Locator each month very seriously. With these pet owners in mind, PSI has become the first pet-sitter association to offer third-party verification of pet sitters’ background checks.
With PSI’s newly launched Locator Designation Program, pet sitters can obtain the “Background Check PASSED” icon on their PSI Pet Sitter Locator profile after applying for and passing an extensive search of court records in all the counties of residence detected for at least the past seven years.
“As the leading, most-trusted organization for professional pet sitters, we felt it was PSI’s responsibility to educate the public that all background checks are not created equal and pet-sitter directories touting ‘national’ or ‘nation-wide’ background checks can be misleading,” explained PSI President Patti J. Moran. “PSI’s background check package includes an address trace and subsequent county-level court search, which is the most effective way of detecting criminal offenses.”
A “Background Check PASSED” icon on a pet sitter’s profile on the PSI Pet Sitter Locator means the criminal investigation is no more than one year old. This designation indicates that the pet sitter has met PSI’s background screening requirements and it applies to the pet-sitting business owner only. PSI’s Locator Designation Program requires member pet sitters to keep the background credential current by passing a brand new screening annually.
“This standard greatly reduces the chances of an unreported conviction,” added Moran.
PSI spent the past two years creating this compliant, reliable, third-party verification program in collaboration with background screening expert, Sterling Infosystems Inc., and with guidance from the premier employment law firm, Jackson Lewis LLP.
“Sterling applauds PSI for its commitment to developing the Locator Designation Program, an independent background verification process,” noted Clare Hart, president of Sterling Infosystems Inc. “We believe this professional credential is an indispensable way to build trust and confidence when choosing an in-home care provider. We take great pride that our background screening partnership with PSI helps PSI members establish trust in the community while giving thousands of pet owners a measure of security as they search the PSI Pet Sitter Locator.”
For pet owners, PSI’s Locator Designation Program also provides convenience and assurance. With today’s technology, documents—including background screening reports—can easily be duplicated or manipulated. Even legitimate screening reports can be difficult to read and interpret. A “Background Check PASSED” icon on a pet sitter’s profile on the PSI Pet Sitter Locator removes the guesswork, ensuring that the background verification is authentic, thorough and up to date.
At this time, verification for the Locator Designation Program is only available to U.S. members due to the wide variations in judicial systems from country to country. However, PSI makes background screening services available to most international members, and international pet owners are encouraged to inquire about background-screening results directly with providers.
Pet owners are encouraged to visit the PSI website to learn more about what is included in the PSI background check search for the Locator Designation Program. To search for a local PSI pet sitter, pet owners can visit the PSI Pet Sitter Locator at petsit.com/locate.