Child Protection and Vulnerable Persons Policy

version Jan 2015; updated June 2016 and Oct 2016

Code of Conduct to Ensure a Child Safe Organsiation

Providing training for children and young people brings additional responsibilities for employees of the College. 

All employees of the College are responsible for promoting the safety and well-being of children and young people by:

• Adhering to the College Child Protection Policy at all times and taking all reasonable steps to ensure the safety and protection of children and young people

• Treating everyone with respect and honesty (this includes staff, clients, volunteers, students, children, young people, school advisers, guardians, carers and parents)

• Remembering to be a positive role model to children and young people in all your conduct with them

• Setting clear boundaries about appropriate behaviour between yourself and the children and young people in your organisation – boundaries help everyone to carry out their roles well

• Listening and responding appropriately to the views and concerns of children and young people

• Ensuring another adult is always present or in sight when conducting face to face one- to- one coaching, instruction or other activities

• Reporting suspected child abuse and neglect in accordance with College Reporting Rules as soon as practicable

• Responding quickly, fairly and transparently to any serious complaints made by a child, young person or their parent/guardian

• Encouraging children and young people to ‘have a say’ on issues that are important to them.

• Providing feedback to both children and parents or guardians.

 

Employees of the College, by accepting their employment contract, agree that they will not:

• Engage in physical contact with students or clients, other than customary greetings eg shaking of hands

• Develop any ‘special’ relationships with children and young people that could be seen as favouritism such as the offering of gifts or special treatment

• Ask unnecessarily personal questions of students or engage or allow personal discussion, regardless of who initiates the discussion

• Discriminate against any child or young person because of age, gender, cultural background, religion, vulnerability or sexuality

• Offer personal gifts or special treatment

• Ignore efforts by a young person to reach out for help related to a child protection matter

• Use language that is offensive or has a sexual connotation or be regarded as demeaning or harrassing

• Make contact with students for any reason other than in the normal course of their job role, and limit after hours contact or use of personal phones for that contact only with supervisor knowledge of the reasons for it and with approval.

Failure to comply with this Code of Conduct to Ensure a Child Safe Organisation will be treated as a staff disciplinary action.

Child Protection and Vulnerable Persons Policy

The College recognises the need to have in place additional procedures to identify and action situations where there are concerns for the safety, welfare and well being of students.

The College will be proactive in providing a Child Safe Environment and seek the input and views of young people and their guardians and carers on all aspects of its operations and especially the Child Protection Policy and Procedures.

The College will report to the appropriate government agency concerns for the safety, welfare and well being of students who are under 18 years of age; and

In the case of students over 18, where there is concern for their safety or well being, act to obtain assistance from the relevant agency or support body.

The College will implement internal policies and procedures to ensure that staff who will have face to face contact with students under 18 will be screened for child protection offences in accordance with required legislation.

The College procedures will include processes to monitor staff interaction and access to information for students under 18.

Procedures under the Child Protection and Vulnerable Persons Policy

  • Tell Us If You Have Concerns About Your Treatment or Safety

    a) Students seeking help should ask to speak confidentially to a Director of Training. 

  • Reporting Children at Risk Procedures

    If a student is under 18 they are technically a child that falls under the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act NSW 2012 (and equivalent legislation in other states and territories)

    Under this legislation College staff have an obligation to report specific matters or concerns.

    The College has internal procedures that guide staff on this process.

  • Kids Help Line

    Children or young people who need help can contact the Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800

    Contact them through their Email Counselling service at kidshelp.com.au

  • Work with Children History Checks

    a) College Policy is to require all Student Advisers to obtain a clearance under the NSW Work with Children Check process when they are initially employed. Employment is conditional on obtaining a clear "check".

    b) College staff delivering classroom courses in other states may, in addition, be required to have equivalent state / territory checks undertaken.

    c) New recruits who show they have some history of working in states other than NSW will be asked to complete that states "check" where the information of any offences will not show in the NSW check.

    d) The SA Childrens Protection Act 1993 requires a review of the risk related to each employee in contact with children every 3 years. This will be undertaken by the Director of Compliance in line with the risk assessment process,  based on the potential contact with children in their role.

    e) Staff in support roles will be required to undertake the same checks when assessed as being in a prescribed role.

    f) Reports are saved into the staff members confidential staff file. Where any adverse report is received procedural fairness will be applied and records retained in the staff members confidential file.

    g) A parent, guardian or carer can request to see the relevant certificate, letter or report.

     

  • Risk Assessment of Risks to Children

    The College as part of its Risk Management Plan has a specific item that identifies, assesses and takes steps to minimise and prevent harm to children because of the action or inaction of a person representing the College.

    The Risk Assessment 2016 identifies only low level risks given the nature of the remote delivery mode; staff monitoring processes; and controlled access to information. These risks did not require further action.

    Annually the College Director of Compliance will review this Risk Assessment to identify any new risks; re-assess those identified and implement mitigation and control steps.

  • Staff Awareness and Child Protection Policy Breaches

    a) New recruits are advised of the Policy and Check Requirements at the time an offer of employment is made

    b) Professional Development activities ensure ongoing awareness of obligations and reporting requirements.

    c) The Policy, Procedures and Reporting Requirements will be published so that staff have ongoing access.

    d) Allegations of breaches of the policy will be treated as a staff disciplinary process, noting that mandatory government reporting obligations may apply.