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Policy Name Child Safety Policy and Procedures
Effective Date 1 April 2019
Date Last Reviewed March 2019
Scheduled Review Date May 2022
Responsible Person CEO

Download the Child Safety Policy and Procedures PDF

Policy

The National Youth Science Forum (NYSF) is committed to promoting and protecting the safety and wellbeing of all children. We have zero tolerance for child abuse.

Everyone working at NYSF (including our volunteers) is responsible for the care and protection of children and reporting information about child abuse.

If any person believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse, telephone 000.

Purpose

1. The purpose of this Policy is to:

a. prevent child abuse occurring within all NYSF Environments;

b. work towards an organisational culture of child safety;

c. ensure that all parties are aware of their responsibilities for identifying possible occasions for child abuse and for establishing controls and procedures for preventing such abuse and/or detecting such abuse when it occurs;

d. provide guidance on action that should be taken where a person suspects any child abuse within all NYSF Environments;

e. provide a clear statement to employees, directors, volunteers and contractors forbidding any such abuse; and

f. provide assurance that any and all suspected abuse will be reported and fully investigated.

2. For the purposes of this Policy, “NYSF Environment” means any physical or virtual place made available or authorised by the NYSF’s governing authority for use by a child, including:

a. the offices of the NYSF;

b. online NYSF Environments (including email, portals and intranet systems); and

c. other locations provided by the NYSF for a child's use (including, without limitation, locations used for camps, excursions, “rest days”, competitions, and other events).

Scope

3. This Policy applies to all employees, directors, volunteers and contractors of the NYSF.

Guiding principles

4. This Policy is based on the following principles:

a. The NYSF has a zero tolerance for child abuse;

b. the best interests of the child are paramount;

c. child protection is a shared responsibility;

d. all children have a right to feel safe and be safe, and have equal rights to protection from abuse;

e. The NYSF will consider the opinions of children and use their opinions to develop child safety policies and procedures;

f. The NYSF will take into account the diversity of all children, including (but not limited to) the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, children with disabilities, and children who are vulnerable, and make reasonable efforts to accommodate these matters;

g. The NYSF is committed to the cultural safety of Aboriginal children, and those from culturally and/or linguistically diverse backgrounds, and to providing a safe environment for children living with a disability; and

h. everyone covered by the Policy must also comply with the NYSF’s Code of Conduct, which sets stringent standards for personal behaviour.

Responsibilities

5. All employees, directors, contractors and volunteers share in the responsibility for the prevention and detection of child abuse, and must:

a. familiarise themselves with the relevant laws in relation to child safety and this National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure, and comply with all requirements;

b. report any reasonable belief that a child’s safety is at risk to the relevant authorities (in accordance with the Child Safety Procedure); and

c. provide a safe environment for all children.

6. Notwithstanding the above, the Board of the NYSF has ultimate responsibility for the prevention and detection of child abuse and for ensuring that appropriate and effective internal control systems are in place. The Board is also responsible for ensuring that appropriate policies, procedures and codes of conduct that deals with these issues are in place.

7. The CEO of the NYSF is responsible for:

a. dealing with and investigating reports of child abuse;

b. ensuring that all employees, directors, contractors and volunteers are aware of relevant laws and the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure;

c. ensuring that all adults within the NYSF community are aware of their obligation to report suspected child abuse in accordance with this National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure;

d. ensuring that all employees, directors, contractors and volunteers are aware of their obligation to comply with the Child Safety Code of Conduct; and

e. providing support for employees, directors, contractors and volunteers in undertaking their child safety obligations.

8. All managers must ensure that they:

a. promote child safety at all times;

b. assess the risk of child abuse within their area of control and eradicate / minimize any risk to the extent possible;

c. educate employees, contractors and volunteers about the prevention and detection of child abuse; and

d. facilitate the reporting of any concerns of child safety.

Child Safety Officers

9. Nominated Child Safety Officers (CSOs) are available to listen, discuss and clarify issues confronting individual employees, directors, volunteers and contractors in relation to child abuse. The NYSF CSOs will make reports on behalf of the NYSF and ensure that adequate records are maintained. Please note that individuals may still have reporting obligations, as set out below. The NYSF CEO is responsible for appointing CSOs.

Recognising child abuse

10. Child abuse includes:

a. any act committed against a child involving

i. a sexual offence; or

ii. grooming; and

b. the infliction, on a child, of-

i. physical violence; or

ii. serious emotional or psychological harm; and

b.serious neglect of a child.

11. “Child” means a person under the age of 18 years unless otherwise stated under the law applicable to the child. Collective term for “child” is “children”.

Reporting obligations

12. Employees, directors, volunteers and contractors must comply with the Child Safety Procedure tailored to the specific State they are located in.

13. Notwithstanding the above, if any person believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse, telephone 000.

Encouraged to report

14. The NYSF supports and encourages employees, directors, volunteers and contractors to make a report to the Police and/or the relevant government agency if they form a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection, or they are concerned about the safety, health or wellbeing of a child.

15. As set out in the Child Safety Procedure, if a person would like internal guidance or support with addressing their concerns, they are encouraged to speak with their supervisor.

16. Ultimately, it is a personal decision of the employee, director, volunteer or contractor whether they choose to make a report to an external authority or not.

Protection of reporters

17. Any employee, director, volunteer or contractor that makes a report in good faith in accordance with the Child Safety Procedure will be supported by the NYSF, and will not be penalised by the NYSF for making the report.

Reportable conduct scheme

18. In addition to the reporting obligations discussed above, Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and Victoria also place specific obligations on the CEO to make reports under the applicable reportable conduct schemes.

19. Under all the Schemes, the CEO is required to make reports to a specific external authority once they become aware (or are notified) of a child abuse allegation being made against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor.

20. The CEO is also required under the Schemes to provide updates to the applicable external authority. The timeframes and notice requirements differ between the States and Territory, and so the required steps are set out in detail in the Child Safety Procedure.

Prevention

Recruitment

21. The NYSF undertakes a comprehensive recruitment and screening process for all employees, directors, volunteers and contractors which aims to:

a. promote and protect the safety of all children within all the NYSF Environments;

b. identify and recruit the safest and most suitable candidates who share the NYSF’s values and commitment to protect children; and

c. prevent a person from working at the NYSF if they pose an unacceptable risk to children.

22. Each job or category of jobs for the NYSF employees, directors, volunteers and contractors that involves child-connected work will have a clear statement that sets out:

a. the job’s requirements, duties and responsibilities regarding child safety; and

b. the job occupant’s essential or relevant qualifications, experience and attributes in relation to child safety.

23. All applicants for jobs that involve child-connected work for the NYSF will be informed about the NYSF’s child safety practices (including the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure).

24. All employees, directors, volunteers and contractors that have direct contact with children are required to have a current working with children check (WCC) prior to being engaged by the NYSF. The NYSF’s Manager, Corporate Services records all WCCs on a spreadsheet that is checked annually to see who requires a renewal.

25. The NYSF will conduct thorough checks to ensure the suitability of all candidates prior to their engagement. This will include the NYSF making reasonable efforts to gather, verify and record the following information about a person whom it proposes to engage to perform child-connected work:

a. WCC status, or similar check;

b. proof of personal identity and any professional or other qualifications;

c. the person's history of work involving children; and

d. in the case of activities that involve overnight stays, reference checks will be obtained to the extent that it is reasonably practicable.

26. The type of evidence that an applicant is required to provide to the NYSF will vary depending on the type of position that they are applying for. However, the NYSF will not offer any applicant a position at the NYSF until they provide the required evidence to the Manager, Corporate Services.

27. The NYSF will exercise discretion and may require applicants to provide a police check in accordance with the law and as appropriate, before they commence working at the NYSF and during their time with the NYSF in regular intervals.

28 Once engaged, the NYSF will provide employees, directors, volunteers and contractors with access to the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure and employees, directors, volunteers and contractors must review and acknowledge their understanding of the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure.

29. All successful applicants engaged at the NYSF will be assessed on an ongoing basis:

a. during any scheduled performance review; and

b. after any concern is raised regarding their conduct with children,

c. to ensure that they remain suitable for child-connected work.

Risk Management

30. The NYSF will ensure that child safety is a part of its overall risk management strategy approach.

31. The CEO or delegate will be responsible for identifying and managing child safety risks within all the NYSF Environments. Everyone working at the NYSF (including volunteers) will receive regular training in relation to child safety.

32. The NYSF will be open to receiving feedback from all members of the community on how to improve its risk management approach and better protect the safety of children. Feedback should be directed to the CEO or Board Chair in writing.

33. If someone working at the NYSF (including volunteers) identify risks of child abuse occurring in one or more the NYSF Environments the particular CSO or supervisor will make a record of those risks and specify the action(s) the NYSF will take to reduce or remove the risks (i.e. risk controls).

34. As part of its risk management strategy and practices, the NYSF Board (Risk and Audit Committee) will monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of the implementation of its risk controls.

35. CSOs or supervisors will report any risks to child safety to the CEO.

36. The NYSF will ensure that there are appropriate human resources policies to assess staff in relation to compliance with their child safe obligations and continued suitability for child-connected work.

37. The NYSF will ensure that appropriate training at least annually is conducted for:

a. Directors;

b. Employees; and

c. Volunteers.

Communication

38. The NYSF is pro-active in the area of prevention and will communicate the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure in the manner below.

Program Participants Parents, Guardians, Community, Partners Employees, Volunteers, Contractors, Directors
  • Program Agreement
  • Website
  • Orientation Sessions (for some Programs only)
  • Program Agreement
  • Website
  • NYSF newsletter
  • Orientation Sessions (for some Programs only)
  • Website
  • Letters of appointment/ contracts
  • New employees, directors, volunteers and contractors Induction Training and refresher training
  • Annual Training Session

39. The NYSF will ensure that the NYSF’s child safety practices and its child safety code of conduct are communicated in an accessible manner for:

a. younger children, by discussing the documents in-person (and/or any other method deemed appropriate and effective for the particular age of the child); and

b. children living with a disability, by discussing the documents in-person (and/or any other method deemed appropriate and effective for the particular type of disability that the child is living with).

Responding and Reporting

40. In the case of an allegation being made against an employee, director, volunteer and/or contractor at the NYSF, the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegations involve the CEO) will follow the NYSF’s Child Safety Procedure. The NYSF will take all steps to ensure that the safety of the child is paramount.

41. The first step is to withdraw the accused person from active duty, which could entail standing down (with pay, where applicable), re-assignment to other duties that do not have direct contact with children, or to work under increased supervision while the matter is being investigated.

42. The CEO will also comply with any applicable reportable conduct schemes and report the allegation to the appropriate external authority when required.

Investigations

43. In the event of a child disclosing an incident of abuse to someone they trust it is essential that it is dealt with sensitively and professionally.

44. The NYSF will appropriately investigate all allegations relating to an incident of abuse in accordance with its obligations and to the extent reasonably practicable. In some circumstances, it may be necessary for the NYSF to conduct an investigation in addition to any investigation conducted by authorities (e.g. the police).

45. The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegations involve the CEO will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by a Government Department or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

46. All people covered by the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure must co-operate fully with any investigation by a Government Department, the police or the NYSF.

47. The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegations involve the CEO will make every effort to keep any such investigation confidential; however, from time to time other employees, directors, volunteers and contractors may need to be consulted in conjunction with the investigation (e.g. to provide witness statements).

48. An investigation conducted by the NYSF will be conducted in accordance with procedural fairness to protect the integrity of the investigation and the interests of all the participants involved in the investigation. The NYSF will also handle the allegations in a confidential manner to the greatest extent possible.

49. In some circumstances, it may be appropriate for the NYSF to engage a person (or persons) from outside the NYSF to conduct an independent investigation in relation to allegations.

50. The outcome will depend on the findings of the investigation, but may include withdrawal from active duty, re-assignment to duties with no contact with children, increased supervision, disciplinary action, dismissal or criminal prosecutions.

Record keeping

51. All reports of alleged abuse or harm (or an identified risk) must be recorded in the form of an Incident Report. Places, times, dates, names of people, observable behaviours or evidence of harm are what is recordable. Reports must be to be securely stored by Manager, Corporate Services.

Privacy and confidentiality

52. The NYSF will collect, use, disclose and hold personal information in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Privacy Policy.

Principles

53. There are two guiding principles in respect to a child’s privacy.

a. First, the NYSF will operate on the best interests principle. All employees, directors, volunteers and contractors will do what they believe to be in the best interest of the child. This principle supersedes all others.

b. Second, the NYSF will respect a child’s confidentiality except in situations where it conflicts with the best interests principle.

53. As much as is reasonably possible, an individual’s confidentiality is to be protected. Both those who are making reports and those about whom accusations are being made are entitled to confidentiality. Where there is suspected abuse or misconduct, employees, directors, volunteers and contractors must not disclose or make use of the information in a manner that breaches confidentiality, other than to report and act consistent with the National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure, and relevant statutory requirements.

Monitoring and review

55. In accordance with the NYSF’s document management framework, a review of this National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure shall be conducted every two years, and following every child safety incident.

56. The CEO will be responsible for ensuring that this National Child Safety Policy, Code of Conduct and Procedure is reviewed and updated.

Procedures

1. This Procedure applies to all employees, directors, volunteers and contractors of NYSF, whether they work face-to-face, online or remotely with children. It should be read in accordance with the Child Safety Policy and Code of Conduct.

2. The CEO will be accountable for monitoring compliance with this Procedure.

3. Given that all States differ in regards to the reporting obligations, you must use the State-based procedure applicable to where you are located and / or where the program in being conducted:

a. Victoria;

b. New South Wales;

c. Tasmania;

d. South Australia;

e. Queensland;

f. Western Australia;

g. Northern Territory;

l. Australian Capital Territory.

 

Victoria

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person (aged 18 or over) that forms a belief, on reasonable grounds, that a sexual offence has been committed in Victoria against a child (under the age of 16 years) by another person (aged 18 or older), must make a report to the police as soon as practicable.

Any person that forms a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from child abuse (physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or neglect), may disclose that information to the police or the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The NYSF encourages all persons with concerns to raise this directly with CSO, supervisor or the CEO.

Any person may disclose a reportable allegation to the Commission for Children and Young People (Commission).

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DHHS, the police and/or the Commission as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with the NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any reportable allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable so that they can comply with the reportable conduct scheme.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DHHS, the police and/or the Commission with the support of CSO, supervisor or the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DHHS at the below phone number, according to your location in the State (9:00am to 5:00pm) or 13 12 78 (after hours). Ask for Child Protection.

  • North Division Intake - 1300 664 977
  • South Division Intake - 1300 655 795
  • East Division Intake - 1300 360 391
  • West Division Intake - Rural and regional only - 1800 075 599
  • West Division Intake - metropolitan only - 1300 664 977

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

AND/OR

Ring the Commission on (03) 8601 5281 or email the Commission at childsafestandards@ccyp.vic.gov.au.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

If the person informs CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

Where an allegation has been the made, the NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DHHS, the Commission and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DHHS, the police and/or the Commission may need to contact the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DHHS will only interview the child if he/she is agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DHHS, the police or the Commission) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

New South Wales

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that forms reasonable grounds that a child (under the age of 16) is at risk of significant harm and those grounds arise during the course of or from the person’s work at NYSF, must make a report to the Department of Family and Community Services (DFCS) as soon as practicable.

Any person that knows or believes that child abuse has been committed against a child under the age of 18 and their information might be of assistance to police in apprehending, prosecuting or convicting the offender, must make a report to the police as soon as practicable.

Any person that has reasonable grounds to suspect that a child is at risk of significant harm, may disclose that information to DFCS.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DFCS and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DFCS and the police with the support of their CSO, supervisor or the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DFCS on the Child Protection Helpline at 132 111 (24 hours/7 days).

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at the NYSF the visiting police officer/DFCS representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately (with pay, where applicable).  Furthermore, if the CEO becomes aware of a reportable allegation, they will notify the NSW Ombudsman as soon as possible after becoming aware of the reportable allegation.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by DFCS, the NSW Ombudsman or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DFCS, the NSW Ombudsman and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DFCS, the police and/or the NSW Ombudsman may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DFCS will only interview the child if he/she is agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DFCS, the police or the NSW Ombudsman) is the responsibility of that authority

 

Tasmania

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that is a mandated reporter under Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1997 (TAS) must make a report to the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS Tasmania) or a Community-Based Intake Service if, in the course of carrying out their official duties, they believe or suspect on reasonable grounds, or know that a child has been or is being abused or neglected, or there is a reasonable likelihood of a child being killed or abused or neglected by a person with whom the child resides.

Any person that forms a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from child abuse (physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or neglect), may disclose that information to the police or DHHS Tasmania or a Community-Based Intake Service.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with the CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DHHS Tasmania and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO)  should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DHHS Tasmania and/or the police with the support of the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DHHS Tasmania 1300 737 639 (24 hours 7 days)

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at the NYSF the visiting police officer/DHHS Tasmania representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by DHHS Tasmania or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, the NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DHHS Tasmania and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DHHS Tasmania and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DHHS Tasmania will only interview the child if they are agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DHHS Tasmania or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

South Australia

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that is a mandated reporter under the Children’s Protection Act 1993 (SA) must make a report to the Department of Education and Child Development (DECD) if they have reasonable grounds to suspect that a child has been or is being abused or neglected and the suspicion is formed in the course of the person's work (whether paid or voluntary) or carrying out of their official duties.

Any person that suspects on reasonable grounds that a child has been or is being abused or neglected, may make a report to the DECD.

Any person that forms a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from child abuse (physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or neglect), may disclose that information to the police.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DECD and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with the NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DECD and/or the police with the support of the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DECD on the Child Abuse Report Line on 13 14 78 (24 hours 7 days)

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at NYSF the visiting police officer/DECD representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by DECD or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, the NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DECD and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DECD and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DECD will only interview the child if they are agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DECD or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

Queensland

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that is a mandated reporter under the Child Protection Act 1999 (QLD) must make a report to the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (DCCSDS) if they form a reasonable suspicion that a child has suffered, is suffering or is at an unacceptable risk of suffering significant harm caused by physical or sexual abuse and the child may not have a parent able and willing to protect the child from the harm.

Any person that forms a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from child abuse (physical, sexual, emotional, psychological or neglect), may disclose that information to the police.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DCCSDS and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with the NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DCCSDS and/or the police with the support of the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DCCSDS on the Child Safety After Hours Service Centre on 13 14 78 (24 hours 7 days)

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at the NYSF the visiting police officer/DCCSDS representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by DCCSDS or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DCCSDS and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DCCSDS and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DCCSDS will only interview the child if he/she is agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DCCSDS or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

Western Australia

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that is a mandated reporter under the Children and Community Services Act 2004 (WA) must make a report to the Department of Communities Child Protection and Family Support (DCCPFS) if, in the course of their work, they believe on reasonable grounds that a child has been the subject of sexual abuse or is the subject of ongoing sexual abuse.

Any person that is concerned about a child’s wellbeing, may make a report to DCCPFS and/or the police.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to DCCPFS and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to DCCPFS and/or the police with the support of the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring DCCPFS at the Central Intake Team on 1800 273 889 (business hours) or the Crises Care Unit on 9223 1111 (out of business hours).

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at the NYSF the visiting police officer/DCCPFS representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by DCCPFS or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by DCCPFS and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, DCCPFS and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • DCCPFS will only interview the child if they are agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. DCCPFS or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

Northern Territory

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person must make a report to the Territory Families under the Care and Protection of Children Act 2007 (NT) if, who has a reasonable belief that a child has been harmed or is likely to be harmed. A person is guilty of an offence if this report is not made.

Any person that is concerned about a child’s wellbeing, may make a report to Territory Families and/or the police.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to Territory Families and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with the NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to Territory Families and/or the police with the support of the CEO.

Making a report:

Ring the Child Abuse Hotline on 1800 700 250 (24 hours) or the police (for matters which are not emergencies) on 131 444, or Territory Families on (08) 8922 7111

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000 if there is an emergency.

Information for making a report:

  • name, age and address of the child;
  • the reason for suspecting that the behaviour or injury is a result of abuse;
  • an assessment of the immediate danger to the child;
  • a description of the injury or behaviour observed;
  • the current whereabouts of the child;
  • any other information about the family; and
  • any specific cultural details, e.g. English speaking, disability, etc.

Ask that NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at the NYSF the visiting police officer/Territory Families representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the CSO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by Territory Families or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, the NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by Territory Families and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a report, Territory Families and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • Territory Families will only interview the child if they are agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. Territory Families or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

 

Australian Capital Territory

Step 1:

Any person that believes a child is in immediate risk of abuse should telephone 000.

Any person that is a mandated reporter under the Children and Young People Act 2008 (ACT) must make a report to the Children and Youth Protection Services (CYPS) if, in the course of their work, they believe on reasonable grounds that a child has been the subject of sexual abuse or is the subject of ongoing sexual abuse.

Any person that is concerned about a child’s wellbeing, may make a report to CYPS and/or the police.

The individual employee, director, volunteer, or contractor of the NYSF, should discuss these observations and concerns with their CSO, supervisor or the CEO, who can assist the person to make the report to CYPS and/or the police as required. However, the individual is not required to consult with the NYSF, or gain the support of the NYSF, prior to making a report.

The CEO should be notified of any child abuse allegation against an employee, director, volunteer or contractor as soon as practicable.

Step 2:

It may be that, following the previous step, a person decides to make a report to CYPS and/or the police with the support of the CEO.

Making a Child Concern Report:

Ring the Mandated Persons line on 1300 556 728 (24 hours), the General Public line on 1300 566 729 (24 hours) or the Department of Care Services helpline on 132 111

AND/OR

Ring the police on 000 if there is an emergency.

Information for making a Child Concern Report:

  • name and date of birth of the child or young person;
  • the home address of the child or young person and any known previous addresses of the family;
  • the current whereabouts of the child or young person;
  • name of parents, or their aliases, and contact details;
  • names of known siblings;
  • the nature of the abuse and neglect;
  • if you know of any supports being provided to the child, young person and family including extended family; and
  • details about when and how you became aware of the information.

Ask that the NYSF be informed of each step of the procedure.

Request that if an interview is to take place at NYSF the visiting police officer/CYPS representative is in plain clothes and the time of the interview is specified so that appropriate arrangements for a meeting room can be organized.

If the person informs their CSO or supervisor that they are to make/has made a report, the SCO or supervisor will disclose this to the CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO). The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will ensure that the Board is updated on any developments. The CEO and/or the Board will ensure that the NYSF offers support to the child and the reporter.

If the complainant alleges that a crime has been committed by an employee, director, volunteer or contractor, that person will be stood aside immediately.

The CEO (or the Chair of the Board if the allegation involves the CEO) will conduct an independent investigation into the allegation to the extent that it will not interfere with investigations by CYPS or the police, and will co-operate with the authorities as required.

Where an allegation has been the made, the NYSF will make, secure, and retain records of the allegation of child abuse and the NYSF’s response to it.

Fulfilling the roles and responsibilities contained in this Procedure does not displace or discharge any other obligations that arise if a person reasonably believes that a child is at risk of child abuse.

Step 3:

If the child is agreeable to be interviewed by CYPS and/or the police, the CEO or delegate should offer to be present at the interview to give support to the child.

Step 4:

Following a Child Concern Report, CYPS and/or the police may need to contact the CEO about the notification. It would be a matter of courtesy to inform the CEO that a Child Concern Report has been made, or is about to be made.

Step 5:

Following a report, it is important to protect confidentiality and the interests of the child and family at all times.

Special comments:

  • CYPS will only interview the child if they are agreeable;
  • the family will not be contacted until it is believed there is a case and the child is at risk;
  • if the incident which caused the report to be made has occurred in the past - the child may be seen to be no longer at risk and no further action may be taken;
  • the identity of the person making a notification will be kept confidential (except when that information is required in a court case) unless that person gives permission for the information to be divulged. Such confidentiality should also be requested by the CSO and any other person who may become aware that a notification is to be, or has been, given;
  • throughout the entire process of observation, discussion and reporting, the interests of the child and their family should be protected from unnecessary disclosure of information concerning abuse; and
  • following the making of a report, any investigation that takes place by that external authority (i.e. CYPS or the police) is the responsibility of that authority.

Child Safety Incident Report Form

The Child Safety Incident Report Form is available at the end of the Child Safety Policy and Procedures PDF. 

Download the Child Safety Policy and Procedures PDF.