Child Safe Organisation

Introduction

Our policy guides staff, volunteers and students on how to behave with kids in our organisation. The policy focuses on how we can promote kids’ participation in our organisation and make it safer for them.

Support kids’ participation

Academy of Music Dance Drama supports the active participation of kids in our organisation. We listen to kids’ views, respect what they say and involve them when we make decisions, especially about matters that will directly affect them.

Support staff, volunteers & students

1. We promote respect, fairness and consideration for all staff, volunteers and students and their families.
2. All staff, volunteers and students have a more senior officer assigned to support and supervise their work.
3. All new staff, volunteers and students will receive a copy of the Child-safe Policy, Code of Conduct and Dealing with Complaints process.

Recruitment

1. Statement
a. our organisation will maintain a rigorous and consistent recruitment, screening and selection process.
2. Practice
a. Application
b. Interview process including audition
c. References
d. Working With Children Check.

Dealing with Complaints

1. Contact Brett Lucas
2. If appropriate, initial communication through tutor
3. Jo Turnville (Manager)
4. Email – admin@musicdancedrama.com.au

Communication

1. We will hold regular information sessions for staff, volunteers and students.
2. Our policy will be discussed during induction sessions for all new staff, volunteers and students.
3. Kids and parents joining our program/s will receive a copy of the Policy, Code of Conduct and Dealing with Complaints process.
4. Parents will receive a copy of the Parent’s Guide to Child Protection Issues.

Review

The policy and guidelines will be reviewed every two years and incorporate
comments and suggestions from children and young people, parents, staff,
volunteers and students.

CODE OF CONDUCT
STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT

Our organisation provides an open, welcoming and safe environment for everyone
participating in our programs.
We provide high-quality program(s) for kids that are safe and welcoming for them.
We seek advice and guidance from kids, parents and colleagues so these standards are maintained.

CODES

DO:

  1. Treat everyone with respect and honesty (this includes staff, volunteers, students, children, young people and parents).
  2. Remember to be a positive role model to kids in all your conduct with them.
  3. Set clear boundaries about appropriate behaviour between yourself and the kids in your organisation. Boundaries help everyone to carry out their roles well.
  4. Follow organisational policy and guidelines for the safety of children as outlined in your Child-safe Policy (see resource on Child-safe Policy).
  5. Always have another adult present or in sight when conducting one to one coaching, instruction etc.
  6. Record and act on serious complaints of abuse.

DO NOT:

  1. Develop any ‘special’ relationships with children that could be seen as favouritism such as the offering of gifts or special treatment.
  2. Do things of a personal nature that a child can do for themselves, such as going to the toilet or changing clothes.
Statement
  • Everyone in our organisation should be confident that complaints will be dealt with honestly and fairly.
  • Everyone in our organisation should be confident in reporting inappropriate behaviour around kids.
  • Everyone in our organisation should report any concerns about the safety or welfare of a child or young person immediately.

All complaints should be reported. this includes:

  1. Disclosure of abuse.
  2. Inappropriate behaviour around kids.
  3. Suspicion of abuse or harm to a kid.

All complaints must be reported to the Child Safety Contact Person, BRETT LUCAS on 0415 375 155. A child or young person, or any staff member/volunteer/student can make a complaint, or raise a concern, directly to the Child Safety Contact Person.

The Child Safety Contact Person will take the following action:

  • Listen to the person making the complaint and make a record of the complaint using the ‘Complaint Record Form’.
  • In NSW make a report to the Department of Family and Community Services in the case of an allegation of child abuse.
  • Inform everyone involved in the complaint of the requirement to make this report.
  • If the complaint involves inappropriate behaviour and a breach of the Code of Conduct, the manager/ leader will need to take action in accordance with the internal disciplinary procedure.
NSW Reporting obligations

Department of Family and Community Services Any person who has reasonable grounds to believe that a child or young person is at risk of significant harm may report to Department of Family and Community Services.

Phone 132 111 to report child abuse or neglect (24-hour service).

Some people must report if they have reasonable grounds to suspect a child is at risk of significant harm. They are legally ‘mandatory reporters’ and must report concerns about risk of significant harm to kids to Department of Family and Community Services. A person who is paid to provide the following services and a person (paid or unpaid) who is in a management position in these services are mandatory reporters:

  • Health care (eg: doctors, nurses etc).
  • Education (eg: teachers).
  • Children’s services (eg: child care centres).
  • Residential services (eg: refuges).
  • Law enforcement (eg: police).

NSW ombudsman

The NSW Ombudsman supervises the complaints process of all state and local government agencies as well as schools, child care centres and agencies providing Out-of-home care. People using these services can complain to the Ombudsman and the Ombudsman can check that the service has handled the complaint properly.

The NSW Ombudsman’s ‘Complaint Handler’s Tool Kit’ and ‘Child Protection for the Workplace’ Guidelines are available at: www.ombo.nsw.gov.au

Office of the Children’s Guardian

Reporting bodies have a legal obligation to report findings of sexual misconduct and serious physical assault involving children by a child-related worker to the Office of the Children’s Guardian.

Under Schedule 1 of the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012.
The conduct that must be reported is:

  1. Sexual misconduct committed against, with or in the presence of a child, including grooming of a child.
  2. Any serious physical assault of a child.

Under the legislation, reporting bodies must investigate allegations of such conduct to make an informed finding as to whether or not the conduct occurred.
To determine whether or not the conduct meets the criteria, reporting bodies must consider the nature of the conduct itself and the context in which it occurred.
If the investigation results in a finding that sexual misconduct or serious physical assault occurred, the reporting body must report this finding to the Office of the Children’s Guardian.
under the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012. only findings of sexual misconduct and serious physical assault must be reported, although the Ombudsman may report other misconduct to the Office of the Children’s Guardian.

 

Form Links

Complaints Record Form

 

Risk Assessment