Working with Children Checks
All AUSactive Registered Professionals working or volunteering with children under the age of 18 years of age need to fulfil the Working with Children Checks and clearance requirements of the state/territory that they’re working in. There are no checks required on a national basis.
Many organisations have internal policies which require employees to undergo background checks as it protects both the children and the organisation from future problems.
State/Territory legal requirements:
Working with Vulnerable People (Background Checking) Act 2011 (ACT)
The ACT Working with Vulnerable People Background Check requires that individuals engaging in regulated activities or services, including where these are provided to children, must be registered. A statutory Screening Unit within the Office of Regulatory Services, Justice and Community Safety Directorate is responsible for applications for registration. The registration is valid for 3 years and is subject to ongoing monitoring. There are three types of registration administered to individuals under the Working with Vulnerable People Background Check: general registration, which is transferable across all roles and organisations; role-based registration; and conditional registration.
For more information & registration visit Access Canberra.
Child Protection (Working With Children) Amendment (Statutory Review) Act 2018 (NSW)
Individuals are responsible for their own application for certification and are also legally required to update their contact details, including any name or address changes within three months. Employers must verify that their workers or volunteers who work with children have had a check or applied for one. Employers operating within a child-related industry are required to register online with the NSW Office of the Children's Guardian (OCG) and are required to subsequently conduct online verification of new paid employees' clearance. Existing paid workers and all volunteers (new and current) also need to have their clearance validated online. Parent volunteers attending overnight children's camps are required to have a WWCC. NGOs are required to provide information relevant to an assessment of whether a person poses a risk to the safety of children in response to a request from the OCG.
Care and Protection of Children Act 2007 (NT)
Individuals are required to apply for a Working With Children Check, known as an “Ochre Card” in the NT. The Ochre Card, which is also known as a Clearance Notice is valid for 2 years and applies to employers and volunteers in child-related employment settings.
For more information & registration visit Northern Territory Government Working with Children website.
Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 (Qld)
Individuals are required to apply for a Working With Children Check, known as a “Blue Card” in Queensland. Valid for 3 years, Blue Cards entitle individuals to engage in child-related occupations/volunteering. Organisations providing child-related services must also have policies and procedures in place to identify and minimise the risk of harm to children, which are monitored by the Public Safety Business Agency.
For more information & registration visit Blue Card Services.
Children's Protection Act 1993 (SA)
The South Australian system is an employer-driven point-in-time system requiring employers and responsible authorities to obtain National Police Checks and conduct a wider screening assessment for those engaging in child-related occupations/volunteering.
People who work or volunteer with children in South Australia are required by law, to hold a current Working with Children Check. The Department of Human Services is responsible for conducting these checks, which are valid for 5 years. The process includes a Screening Unit that will look at criminal history, child protection information and other important information.
For more information & registration visit Government of South Australia Department of Human Services.
Registration to Work with Vulnerable People Act 2013 (TAS)
The Registration to Work with Vulnerable People Act 2013 came into effect on 1 July 2014. The Act will be phased in over 3 years beginning July 2014, replacing the Good Character Check screening program. Child services will be the first sector required to make the transition to the new regulations.
Individuals who work or volunteer in the child care or other child-related sectors are required to apply for a Working with Children Check. Registrations are valid for 3 years or as determined by the Registrar.
For more information visit the Tasmanian Government Department of Justice.
Working With Children Act 2005 (Vic.)
Individuals are required to apply for a Working With Children Check. Valid for 5 years, the check entitles individuals to engage in child-related occupations/volunteering and practical training.
For more information & registration visit the Victorian Government Department of Justice & Regulations.
Working with Children (Criminal Record Checking) Act 2004 (WA)
Individuals are required to apply for a Working With Children Check. Valid for 3 years, the check entitles individuals to engage in child-related occupations/volunteering.
For more information & registration visit Government of Western Australia Department of Communities.