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Child Safety Policy

Last revision Last revision 02/02/2024
Formats FormatsWord and PDF
Size Size13 to 20 pages
4.8 - 10 votes
Fill out the template

Last revisionLast revision: 02/02/2024

FormatsAvailable formats: Word and PDF

SizeSize: 13 to 20 pages

Rating: 4.8 - 10 votes

Fill out the template

This document can be used by a business, company or other organisation to set out its policies for protecting children who use its services and/or participate in events and activities organised by it. The document is for use by organisations/businesses operating in Australia.

The document provides a typical safeguarding policy/statement that can be amended to account for specifics rules and guidelines, and tailored to each organisation's structure. In particular, the document allows amendment for reference to existing policies and specific health and safety rules.

Please note that this Child Safety Policy is intended to set out the general approach of an organisation and will cover some key safeguarding issues. Depending upon the particular circumstances of the organisation's activities, other more detailed policy documents may be required as well.

Workplace policies are not generally intended to be contractually binding on workers. Instead, they explain the organisation's general rules, procedures and expectations of workers. As a consequence, if the organisation fails to follow a particular policy, the worker may not be able to claim that the organisation has breached its contractual obligations. However, this also means that if there are specific matters of importance, that should be legally binding on the worker (such as their specific job duties, their hours of work, confidentiality obligations, or conflict of interest obligations), then the organisation should make sure that these are addressed in a legally binding document, such as an Employment Agreement, a Service Agreement a Confidentiality Agreement or a Non-Compete Agreement.

How to use this document

The policy first needs to be approved by the organisation's management or board.

The document should be completed with all the relevant information. It is the duty of the business to ensure that all aims, responsibilities and arrangements contained within this document are carried out.

This document is intended as a starting point for the business but there may be additional matters to address, which are not covered in the policy. Aside from preparing this policy, there may also be other steps for the business to take in dealing with child safety, including conducting risk assessments, training, reviews and consultations with workers. Safe Work Australia and the Australian Institute of Family Studies provide further information.

This document should be brought to the attention of, and made readily available to workers at the organisation, such as employees, contractors or volunteers as well as parents and the public. An easy way to do this is by posting it on the organisation's website and sending a Letter to Employees About New or Updated Workplace Policies. It is also common to display workplace policies in an easily accessible public area so that any persons who may be connected with the business in any way can easily see the commitment the business has made to upholding standards of child safety.

This policy includes an option to have workers sign it, to acknowledge having read and understood it. If the business is having workers sign copies of it, then the business may keep signed copies on file.

Please note that should this policy be revised or altered at any time, these revisions and alterations must be communicated effectively to workers at the earliest opportunity.

Applicable law

There are many different legal frameworks which are in place to safeguard children in Australia. Some of the key legal frameworks are discussed below.

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) is an international human rights treaty which Australia has ratified. The UNCRC sets out the fundamental rights of children. Many articles within the treaty will be applicable to any organisation which works with or provides services for children. For example, the treaty sets out the right of children to be protected from exploitation, abuse and cruel treatment.

The National Principles for Child Safe Organisations was released by the Australian Human Rights Commission in early 2019. The National Principles are not mandatory, but organisations are encouraged to adopt them in order to become leaders in their field.

The Family Law Act 1975 (Commonwealth) deals with many aspects of child safety in the family context, although family law matters can often be related to child protection matters.

Child protection is generally addressed under state or territory law, including:

- Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 (NSW)
- Children Youth and Families Act 2005 (VIC)
- Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 (VIC)
- Child Protection Act 1999 (QLD)
- Children and Community Services Act 2004 (WA)
- Family Court Act 1997 (WA)
- Education and Care Services National Law (WA) Act 2012
- Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 (SA)
- Child Safety (Prohibited Persons) Act 2016 (SA)
- Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1997 (TAS)
- Children and Young People Act 2008 (ACT)
- Care and Protection of Children Act 2007 (NT)

General principles of contract law, as provided by the common law, may also apply.

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