6.06 Final Report
Institutions should be guided by the following core components when implementing the Child Safe Standards.
Standard 1: Child safety is embedded in institutional leadership, governance and culture.
- The institution publicly commits to child safety and leaders champion a child safe culture.
- Child safety is a shared responsibility at all levels of the institution.
- Risk management strategies focus on preventing, identifying and mitigating risks to children.
- Staff and volunteers comply with a code of conduct that sets clear behavioural standards towards children.
- Staff and volunteers understand their obligations on information sharing and record keeping.
Standard 2: Children participate in decisions affecting them and are taken seriously.
- Children are able to express their views and are provided opportunities to participate in decisions that affect their lives.
- The importance of friendships is recognised and support from peers is encouraged, helping children feel safe and be less isolated.
- Children can access sexual abuse prevention programs and information.
- Staff and volunteers are attuned to signs of harm and facilitate child-friendly ways for children to communicate and raise their concerns.
Standard 3: Families and communities are informed and involved.
- Families have the primary responsibility for the upbringing and development of their child and participate in decisions affecting their child.
- The institution engages in open, two-way communication with families and communities about its child safety approach and relevant information is accessible.
- Families and communities have a say in the institution’s policies and practices.
- Families and communities are informed about the institution’s operations and governance.
Standard 4: Equity is upheld and diverse needs are taken into account.
- The institution actively anticipates children’s diverse circumstances and responds effectively to those with additional vulnerabilities.
- All children have access to information, support and complaints processes.
- The institution pays particular attention to the needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children with disability, and children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
Standard 5: People working with children are suitable and supported.
- Recruitment, including advertising and screening, emphasises child safety.
- Relevant staff and volunteers have Working with Children Checks.
- All staff and volunteers receive an appropriate induction and are aware of their child safety responsibilities, including reporting obligations.
- Supervision and people management have a child safety focus.
Standard 6: Processes to respond to complaints of child sexual abuse are child-focused.
- The institution has a child-focused complaint handling system that is understood by children, staff, volunteers and families.
- The institution has an effective complaint handling policy and procedure which clearly outline roles and responsibilities, approaches to dealing with different types of complaints and obligations to act and report.
- Complaints are taken seriously, responded to promptly and thoroughly, and reporting, privacy and employment law obligations are met.
Standard 7: Staff are equipped with the knowledge, skills and awareness to keep children safe through continual education and training.
- Relevant staff and volunteers receive training on the nature and indicators of child maltreatment, particularly institutional child sexual abuse.
- Staff and volunteers receive training on the institution’s child safe practices and child protection.
- Relevant staff and volunteers are supported to develop practical skills in protecting children and responding to disclosures.
Standard 8: Physical and online environments minimise the opportunity for abuse to occur.
- Risks in the online and physical environments are identified and mitigated without compromising a child’s right to privacy and healthy development.
- The online environment is used in accordance with the institution’s code of conduct and relevant policies.
Standard 9: Implementation of the Child Safe Standards is continuously reviewed and improved.
- The institution regularly reviews and improves child safe practices.
- The institution analyses complaints to identify causes and systemic failures to inform continuous improvement.
Standard 10: Policies and procedures document how the institution is child safe.
- Policies and procedures address all Child Safe Standards.
- Policies and procedures are accessible and easy to understand.
- Best practice models and stakeholder consultation inform the development of policies and procedures.
- Leaders champion and model compliance with policies and procedures.
- Staff understand and implement the policies and procedures.