The type and extent of screening is based on an approved risk assessment related to the role the contractor will be taking on. Not all contract work requires security screening.

The Contractor Security Screening Operating Policy (CSSOP) applies to all ministries, commission public bodies (CPBs) and Infrastructure Ontario (IO) and ensures consistent screening practices are in place.

Contractor Security Screening (CSS), Supply Chain Ontario (SCO), Ministry of Public and Business Service Delivery (MPBSD) is responsible for coordinating security screening and making screening decisions for contractors, on behalf of the OPS.

Who may be screened

A contractor is defined as:

  • a company (corporation, partnership), or a sole proprietorship
  • an individual, including employees and subcontractors, engaged in a contractual relationship to supply goods or services, directly or indirectly
  • an employee/worker of Infrastructure Ontario (IO)
  • a non-OPS individual employed in a public body (pursuant to the Public Service of Ontario Act, 2006) who is engaged in a contractual relationship to supply goods or services to a ministry, CPB, or IO

Contractors include, but are not limited to, consultants, professionals (e.g. engineers, accountants, lawyers) and service providers (e.g. temporary help agency staff).

Types of screening

When security screening is required, the following types of checks will always be conducted:

  • verification of identity
  • Criminal Record and Judicial Matters Check (CRJMC)

A contractor may also be requested to consent to one or more of the following additional checks, based on the approved risk assessment:

  • Vulnerable Sector Check
  • Driver’s Record Check
  • Credit Check
  • Fingerprint Check
  • other checks, as required

An Out-of-Country Police Certificate will also be required for applicants who have lived outside Canada for more than six consecutive months in the last five years.

Company level screening checks, which involve screening the directors and officers of a company in addition to contractor workers, may also be conducted if the security risk assessment deems it necessary.

Screening process

If your contract work requires security screening, the process will be outlined to you by the business area representative when the contract is awarded. They will explain what is required and guide you through the process.

There is no advantage to undergoing security screening prior to the contract being awarded.

It is the contractor’s personal responsibility to pay for and obtain their own screening check.

Security clearance

If a contactor’s security clearance is issued, it will be valid for up to a maximum of five years from the date of issue. A security clearance may also be issued with a restriction and/or condition.

During this time, a contractor may enter into multiple contracts without the requirement of being re-screened, provided that:

  • there are no clearance restrictions or conditions
  • the level of screening required for the subsequent contract work is either the same or lower than the original clearance

If contractor security clearance is required, it must be in place prior to the contractor beginning work for the OPS.

What can delay the screening process

The contractor security screening process has set requirements that must be followed with respect to information submitted. Most delays in security screening decisions are a result of issues with provided documentation. Examples of issues include:

  • information provided is older than 90 days
  • documentation lacks a seal, stamp, insignia, embossment, or letterhead
  • original copies of documents are not provided, and
  • documentation cannot be verified by the record check provider

Your personal information

All personal information is collected for the purposes of conducting contractor security screening clearance in accordance with the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA).

MPBSD’s program is guided by the Contractor Security Screening Operating Policy, issued by the Management Board of Cabinet under section 3 of the Management Board of Cabinet Act, RSO 1990, Chapter M-1. Screening checks are also conducted in accordance with Ontario’s Police Record Checks Reform Act (PRCRA) and associated regulations.

MPBSD is committed to maintaining the confidentiality, privacy and security of all information obtained through the contractor security screening process.

Contact us

If you have any questions about your contractor security screening requirements, please contact the ministry representative who initiated your screening.

General questions can be directed to doingbusiness@ontario.ca