Thursday, 31 August 2017
Victorian Affiliates are advised that they have a new legal obligation to ensure the safety of children in their care. Under the new duty, organisations are required to take reasonable precautions to prevent the abuse of a child by an individual associated with the organisation while the child is under the care, supervision, or authority of the organisation. If child abuse occurs, the organisation is presumed to have breached the duty unless it proves it took 'reasonable precautions' to prevent the abuse.
Reasonable precautions include screening and reference checking your leaders and volunteers, making sure people are appropriately trained, and encouraging children and adults to notify authorities when they have concerns about the safety of children. There are lots of tools and resources available to help you meet your obligations in ways that are useful for your size, location, and ministries.
For more information, attend a Safe Church Awareness Workshop, check out the online resources on the Safe Places web page or contact the Safe Places Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 03 9488 8800.
These requirements are legally applicable only to Victorian churches and agencies, however CCVT recommends Tasmanian churches and agencies also adopt the best practice actions outlined above.
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