Safeguarding Children Policy

Jesus Youth (JY) Australia
 

CONTENTS:

  1. INTRODUCTION
  2. PURPOSE
  3. SCOPE
  4. SAFEGUARDING COMMITMENT STATEMENT
  5. SAFEGUARDING STRUCTURE, ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITIES
  6. SAFE RECRUITMENT OF STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS
  7. TRAINING AND SUPERVISION
  8. WORKING WITH CHILDRENS CHECK / BLUE CARD OBLIGATIONS
  9. EVENT MANAGEMENT COMPLIANCE REQUIREMENTS
  10. PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIALITY
  11. MANDATORY REPORTING OBLIGATIONS:
  12. CODE OF CONDUCT
  13. DEFINITIONS
  14. RESPONDING TO CONCERNS, ALLEGATIONS AND COMPLAINTS OF ABUSE AGAINST CHILDREN
  15. CLOSING STATEMENT

 

ANNEXURES

  1. CONTACT DETAILS OF RSO / NSO
  2. INFORMATION ABOUT RESPECTIVE STATE AND TERRITORY STATUTORY REGULATIONS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS.
  3. FLOW CHART OF REPORTING SAFEGUARDING CONCERNS

  

  1. INTRODUCTION

 

1.1 Jesus Youth (JY) Australia is committed to the safety of every child who is involved with the organisation. Children have the right to a safe environment at all activities / programs organised
by JY Australia. We support and respect all children and treat them as precious.

 

1.2 This Policy is developed in line with the National Catholic Safeguarding Standards within Australia and the ‚ÄėSafeguarding of Minors and Vulnerable Adults Policy- 2019‚Äô of Jesus Youth International Council.

 

1.3 The spirituality of the Jesus Youth Movement is oriented to value and protect the dignity of each individual. Safeguarding of children is a core value of the movement as it is firmly rooted in the belief that each individual has infinite worth, being created in the image and likeness of God.

 

1.4 The Catholic Church values children as an important part of its life. The Catholic Church has a moral, legal and mission-driven responsibility to create nurturing environments where children are respected, their voices are heard and they are safe and feel safe.

 

1.5 Biblical base for this policy is based on the example of Jesus who welcomed children and taught his disciples to do so, by carrying a child in his hand saying, ‚Äė‚ÄôWhoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me‚Äô (Mark 9:37). It also values and respects parents as the first teachers of faith to their own children and protectors of their children. The Church‚Äôs social doctrine constantly points out the need to respect the dignity of children.

 

  1. PURPOSE

 

2.1 The purpose of this policy is to demonstrate the strong commitment of the JY Movement in Australia to the care, safety and wellbeing of all children.

 

2.2 This policy provides an overview of the key elements of our approach to child safety. Under this Policy we commit to:

 

  • Provision of a safe environment for all children
  • Zero tolerance for any form of child abuse
  • Appropriate safety structures to safeguard, protect, promote and ensure the safety of all children
  • Appropriate procedures and strategies to effectively manage and respond to all safeguarding concerns.
  • All adults in JY Australia have a duty and responsibility to ensure the safety of children.
  • Anyone can raise concerns about child safety, knowing these will be taken seriously by JY Australia.

 

  1. SCOPE

 

3.1 The scope of this policy applies to all JY Australia stakeholders: members, leaders and all other JY appointed or approved persons including: employees, volunteers, contractors, resource persons/speakers, who have or may be expected to have contact with children in the course of their engagement with JY Australia.

 

 

3.2 This policy applies to all JY Australia organised programs /events, activities and locations
such as household groups, retreats, meetings, conferences, prayer meetings, outings,
accompanying / mentoring, outreach events, travels and establishments, whether on site or
virtual, related to the JY Australia movement within Australia.

 

3.3 This policy also applies to the appropriate use of social media involving children; images, videos (Guidelines for virtual meetings or online activities involving children- JY Australia).

 

 

  1. COMMITMENT STATEMENT

 

4.1 JY Australia is actively committed to foster communities of safeguarding that recognise and uphold the dignity and rights of all children.

4.2 We encourage open communication whereby families and communities are informed of relevant issues and participate in decisions about the safety of children. It is particularly important to us to look for avenues to empower children to have a say and be listened to.

4.3 We actively seek to become and remain informed of the causes and signs of child abuse and neglect.

4.4 When we receive information about concerns or witness any matters relating to abuse of a child, we respond appropriately and report any such concerns to the appropriate authority. This includes contacting the appropriate authority immediately where there may be immediate risk of harm to any person, especially a child.

4.5 All JY Australia stakeholders who come into contact, or work with children seek to uphold the dignity of all children and commit to establishing safe and supportive relationships.

4.6 JY Australia has documented policies and procedures to manage risks to children and build a strong culture of safeguarding. All JY Australia stakeholders are expected to follow these policies and procedures and contribute to the culture of care and protection of all children.

4.7 We plan, organise and review all activities with children, proactively considering potential risks and strive to ensure risks are managed and eliminated wherever possible. Everyone is encouraged to communicate any area of concern or where you think our approach may need improvement.

4.8 Anyone who reports concerns, knowledge / allegation of current or past abuse of a child to
JY Australia will be responded to sensitively, respectfully, actively and in a timely manner, in line with our lawful obligations and our own response to complaints of child abuse (Refer section 15)

4.9 We regularly undertake internal and external review of our safeguarding policies and practices to make sure that they are compliant with the statutory requirements and always support a culture and practice that puts the safety of children at the centre of our thinking and action.

4.10 We listen to the voices of children as we constantly strive to remain vigilant and make improvements.

 

  1. SAFEGUARDING STRUCTURE, ROLE AND RESPONSIBILTIES

 

5.1 JY Australia National Council is responsible for the implementation of the below safeguarding policy / measures within Australia:

  • Implement safeguarding practices and processes outlined in this policy.
  • Coordinate the response to allegations and reports of child safety related misconduct and child abuse in relation to all JY Australia stakeholders across JY Australia jurisdiction.
  • Monitor and continually improve safeguarding practices and processes.

 

5.2 JY Australia National council has incorporated a National Safeguarding Committee (NSC). The Safeguarding Committee plays a central role in assisting the National Council with the implementation of the requirements of this policy. NSC also has the below responsibilities:

 

  • Oversee and monitor policies, procedures and practices which safeguard children engaging with JY Australia.
  • Ensure safeguarding functions are embedded in the governance structures and practices of JY Australia.
  • Advising on any relevant safeguarding issues to protect JY Australia.

 

5.3 JY Australia National Council appoints a National Safeguarding Officer (NSO) to develop, review and implement the safeguarding measures within Australia.

  • NSO works with the National Council and Regional Councils / Teams to ensure the enactment of the Safeguarding Policy of JY Australia.
  • NSO also provides a consultative role in dealing with any matters of concern that fall within the realms of safeguarding children within JY Australia.

 

5.4 JY Australia in collaboration with Regional Councils / Teams appoint Regional Safeguarding Officers (RSO). RSO’s work in collaboration with their respective Regional Councils / Teams and are responsible for:

  • ensuring compliance with this policy at regional levels
  • enacting relevant procedures and practices within each region to protect children at all times.
  • Record, report and Manage all safeguarding matters/ complaints relating to children within their regional levels.

 

5.5 Wherever there is a Regional Safeguarding Team (RST), the team plays a central role

in assisting the Regional Council and RSO’s with the implementation of the requirements of this policy. RST also has the below responsibilities:

 

  • Oversee and support RSO‚Äôs with the implementation of policies, procedures and practices within the region.
  • Advising on any relevant safeguarding issues to protect JY at their respective regions.

 

5.5 Furthermore, as safeguarding children is a collective responsibility; all persons in ministry, all JY Australia stakeholders within JY Australia acknowledge their individual responsibility to comply with the Safeguarding Policy requirements at all times with clear behavioural expectations to act in a manner that is caring, respectful and ensuring safety of all children.

 

6 SAFE RECRUITMENT OF STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS

 

6.1. Any stakeholders appointed or assigned to discharge responsibilities or duties by JY Australia will be made aware of the contents of safeguarding policy and related policies and procedures.

 

6.2. As part of the compliance, stakeholders who work in any office or project of the JY Movement within Australia are required to adhere to the below statutory requirements:

 

  • Appropriate referee checks ‚Äď Staff (non-negotiable)/ leaders and volunteers working with children(If relevant to the role)
  • Working With Children‚Äôs Check- WWCC (VIC, SA, NSW, WA) Working with Vulnerable People – WWVP(Act) , Blue card (QLD), Working with Children Clearance- WWCC(NT) and Registration to Work with Vulnerable People – RWVP (TAS) compliance according to the respective State / Territory requirements to include JY Australia as their volunteering organisation.
  • Safeguarding training as per the CPSL standards and State / Territory requirements.
  • Any other below requirements as per the organisational, local Diocesan and State / Territory requirements.
    • National Police Check Policy (Applies for Employees‚Äô only)
    • Guidelines for virtual meetings or online activities involving children- JY Australia
    • Code of Conduct Policy ‚Äď JY Australia
    • Mandatory reporting as per the State / Territory requirements

 

  1. TRAINING AND SUPERVISION

 

7.1. JY Australia imparts comprehensive formation as part of becoming a member in the

movement and follows it up with further guidance and input.

 

7.2. JY Australia stakeholders will comply to the requirements of Clause 6.2 to meet the
statutory compliance. They will be trained to identify, respond and follow processes to all child
safety related concerns including disclosures of abuse or harm.

 

7.3 JY Australia is committed to provide opportunities for education to all stakeholders to help prevent abuse of Children, to create a safe environment and enable an effective ministry to those who have been abused.

 

7.4 With a view to raising awareness and educating the stakeholders on these policies, relevant input sessions, study materials, appropriate prayers and homilies will be used.

 

 

  1. WORKING WITH CHILDRENS/ BLUE CARD CHECK OBLIGATIONS

 

8.1 JY Australia is committed to ensure all stakeholders have a valid Working With Children Check card as part of the pre-employment/ volunteer screening programs to ensure JY Australia a child-safe organisation.

8.2 JY Australia stakeholders are required to follow the State/ Territory mandatory requirements
as there are no national framework setting out the requirements for obtaining a Working With Children Check. (Refer Annexure 2)

9. EVENT MANAGEMENT COMPLIANCE REQUIREMENTS

9.1 Any programs and events organised for / involving children within JY Australia must comply with the below list of documents.

9.2 All the documents must be obtained and maintained by program coordinators before, during and after a JY event.

  • 3.1 Sign In Form (separate for volunteers & Visitors)
  • 3.2 Participant registration form
  • 3.3 Parent/ guardian Consent Form
  • 3.4 Event Evaluation / feedback Form
  • 3.5 Risk Assessment Form (including the resources)
  • 3.6 Event Checklist
  • 3.7 Incident Report Form
  • 3.8 Other compliance Forms

The above forms are available on the intranet for authorised volunteers.

 

  1. PRIVACY AND CONFIDENTIALITY

 

10.1 JY Australia stakeholders must protect the confidentiality and privacy rights of others at all times in accordance with policies and statutory requirements.

 

10.2 Information disclosed to JY stakeholders in spiritual guidance sessions are to be held in confidence, except as required by law. Jesus Youth stakeholders who provide spiritual guidance are to discuss and make clear, with each person seeking help, the nature of confidentiality and its limits.

 

10.3 If there is clear and imminent danger to the person or to the stakeholder who provide spiritual guidance steps may be taken to disclose to the information necessary to protect the parties affected or prevent harm.

 

10.4 Regarding child abuse, in particular sexual or physical abuse, all JY Australia stakeholders should be familiar with and follow the mandatory reporting obligations according to JY Australia and the State/ Territory requirements. If you are in doubt consult with RSO and /or NSO.

 

10.5 JY Australia stakeholder shall take all the necessary steps to keep the personal information confidential in those situations where the personal details of the reporter or any affected person must be maintained.

 

10.6 Before such a disclosure is made to JY Australia or State / Territory agencies, as appropriate and unless prohibited by law or policy, JY Australia stakeholders who provide spiritual guidance may inform the person being guided about the disclosure and the potential consequences.

 

10.7 Information acquired by JY Australia stakeholders providing spiritual guidance may be used in teaching, writing, preparation of homilies or other public presentations only when effective measures are taken to safeguard absolutely, both the client’s and any other person’s identity, and the confidentiality of the disclosure.

 

  1. MANDATORY REPORTING OBLIGATIONS:

 

11.1 JY Australia stakeholders must report if there is a reasonable belief that a child is in need of protection from physical abuse or sexual abuse, reasonable efforts to be made to report and or consult with appropriate Regional/ National Safeguarding Officers who are obliged to take appropriate course of action.

11.2 JY Australia stakeholders within some States/ Territories come under the category specified as ‚Äėpeople in religious ministry‚Äô (Refer Annexures 2A.1- 2A.8) and are mandated people to make a report to child protection, if:

  • in the course of practising their profession or carrying out duties of their office, position or employment
  • they form a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from physical injury or sexual abuse.

 

  1. CODE OF CONDUCT

 

12.1 JY Australia stakeholders, when interacting with children, are required to maintain
appropriate boundaries as below:

  • Employ a team approach involving the knowledge and/or presence of at least two adults and two children
  • Avoid interaction with an individual child if there are no other adults in the immediate vicinity.
  • In case of sacramental confession with a child, Priests are to avoid confessions in isolated locations. ¬† ¬† ¬† Priests who administer the sacraments should adhere to policies / guidelines of the local Diocese.
  • Not to visit a child without another adult present and without the expressed welcome/ consent of parents or guardians.
  • If there is a legitimate cause to meet a child in person, an open meeting room/ office is desirable, the room or office is to have a window or door that is to be left open all throughout the duration of the meeting.
  • Not to drive/travel alone with a child except in the case of an emergency and only with the knowledge of a leader in the ministry or parent / guardian.
  • Not to share a room with a child at all times. If it is a dormitory accommodation and if an adult presence is required for safety ¬† ¬† ¬† reasons then at least two adults from the same gender must be present with the approval of the program coordinator.
  • Not to use, possess, or be under the influence of any substance such as alcohol, or drugs that may impair their functions while supervising children or carrying out their ministry duties when they are representing JY Australia.
  • To wear appropriate attire at all times.
  • Not to share locker rooms, shower rooms, and dressing rooms with minors.
  • should not possess or share with children, sexually-oriented or morally inappropriate materials (including text messages, pictures, magazines, cards, videos, films, DVDs,
    clothing, computer programmes, downloads or web materials).
  • should not engage in Cyberbullying, which is a form of bullying or harassment using electronic means. It can occur through SMS, text, videos and apps, or online in social media, forums, or gaming where people can view, participate in, or share content.
  • refrain from inappropriate language in the presence of children (e.g. swearing, sexually explicit talk and racial slurs).
  • Must not discuss sexual subjects with minors unless it is a specific program requirement and the facilitator should be trained to discuss these matters.
  • Must not engage in any sexually-oriented conversations with minors unless the conversations are part of a legitimate lesson and discussion for teenagers regarding human sexuality issues. On such occasions, the lessons will convey to them the Church‚Äôs teachings on these topics. If they have further questions not answered or addressed by their individual teachers, they should be referred to their parents or guardians for clarification or referral for counselling.
  • Must not engage in any inappropriate contact with minors.
  • Must not engage in any corporal punishment or demeaning language of any kind for behaviour management of minors.

 

12.2 For children participating in JY programs (i.e. retreats, youth group trips, sports-related
activities, overnight trips) the program coordinators must ensure:

  • Relevant consent from the children‚Äôs parents or guardians is obtained
  • There are minimum two children and two volunteers of the same gender as the participants, present at all times.
  • In order for a child to participate, there should be two adult volunteers present for programmes in the ratio 1:10 for stay-in programmes and 1:20 for other day programs. Any request for exceptions should be directed to the concerned program coordinator / leader in advance. The above ratio has to be in conformity with the guidelines prescribed by the State / Territory or local church.
  • No sharing of beds.

 

12.3 Appropriate contact between JY Australia stakeholders and children constitute a positive part of Church life and ministry. The following forms of nonsexual contact could comfortably be carried out in the presence of and with the approval of the child’s parents or guardians in a group environment. Appropriate physical contact with children may include the following:

o Hugs

o Pats on the shoulder or back

o Handshakes

o ‚ÄúHigh fives‚ÄĚ and hand slapping

o Touching hands, faces, shoulders and arms

o Arms around shoulders

o Holding hands during prayer or when a minor is upset

o Holding hands while walking with small children

o Sitting close to small children

o Kneeling or bending down for hugs with a small child

o Verbal praise

o Holding or picking up small children when it is to manage a situation

 

12.4 Inappropriate physical contact with minors may include but not limited to the following:

o Any form of inappropriate physical contact outside of group environment

o Full frontal hugs or ‚Äúbear hugs‚ÄĚ

o Touching bottoms, chests, or private areas

o Lying down or sleeping beside a minor

o Massages, whether by an adult to a minor or by a minor to a Member

o Patting children on the thigh, knee, or leg

o Tickling, wrestling, or ‚Äúroughhousing‚ÄĚ

o Touching or hugging from behind

o Games involving inappropriate touch

o Kisses on the mouth

o Making the minor sit on the lap

12.5 JY staff and Volunteers are to avoid possible emotional boundary violations with children including but not limited to the following:

  • Compliments/comments that relate to physique or body development
  • Spending too much time exclusively with a minor
  • Inappropriate social media contacts other than intended purpose.

  

  1. DEFINITIONS:

 

13.1 Child: An individual who is a child / young person under the age of 18 years

 

13.2 Child abuse: Any act committed against a child by an individual, institutions or processes that impacts the wellbeing of the child. Below are the major categories of abuse against the children.

  • physical abuse
  • sexual abuse including grooming
  • emotional abuse or psychological harm
  • neglect

 

13.3 Harm: to a child is defined as; any detrimental effect of a significant nature on a child’s physical, Psychological or emotional wellbeing.

 

13.4 Child Physical abuse: Generally, child physical abuse refers to the non-accidental use of physical force against a child that results in harm to the child.

 

13.5 Child sexual abuse: Any sexual activity between a child under the age of consent (16) and an adult or older person (i.e. a person two or more years older than the victim) is child sexual abuse. Failure to protect is a criminal offence if a person in a position of authority to reduce or remove the risk of sexual abuse of a child by an adult associated with their organisation.

13.6 Grooming: the action by an adult preparing a child for a personal meeting with the intention of committing a sexual offence or crime. This may be an act done on an Internet chat room, mobile, social media and or directly over a period of time.

 

13.7 Child neglect: The failure by a parent or caregiver to provide a child (where they are in a position to do so) for their physical and emotional development and wellbeing. Neglect happens when a child’s basic needs are not met, affecting their health and development. Basic needs include
food, housing and clean living conditions, health care, adequate clothing, personal hygiene and adequate supervision.

 

13.8 Emotional Abuse or Psychological harm: Serious psychological harm can occur where the behaviour of their parent or caregiver damages the confidence and self-esteem of the child or young person, resulting in serious emotional disturbance or psychological trauma. Emotional Abuse happens when a child is treated in a way that negatively impacts their social, emotional or intellectual development.

13.9 Mandatory Reporting: The legal requirement of certain groups of people to report a reasonable belief of child physical or sexual abuse to child protection authorities/statutory
bodies is known as mandatory reporting. In Victoria, NSW people in religious ministry are mandated to report abuse against children.

13.10 Reasonable Belief: When an adult is concerned about the safety and wellbeing of a child or young person, they must assess that concern to determine if a report should be made to the relevant agency.

 

13.11 Stakeholders – include employee, Office bearers, Leaders, volunteers, contractors, collaborators, resource person and speakers, etc.

 

14 RESPONDING TO CONCERNS, ALLEGATIONS AND COMPLAINTS OF ABUSE AGAINST CHILDREN

 

14.1 The safety of children and young people is paramount. All concerns, allegations or complaints of child abuse will be taken seriously, and acted upon consistent with JY Australia’s moral, ethical and legal obligations to safeguard children as outlined in the Safeguarding policy.

 

14.2 In the event of suspected/ reported concerns, allegations and complaints about abuse involving children, the stakeholders need to follow the below processes.

 

14.3.Every JY Australia stakeholder is responsible in the first instance to notify the abuse immediately to relevant regional safeguarding officers (in writing or verbally)

 

14.4 The regional safeguarding officer, upon receiving the report of concerns, allegations and complaints, needs to complete an incident report within 24 hours and forward it to the National Safeguarding Officer who is responsible for keeping a record of abuse along with the abuse / complaints management actions.

 

14.5 Notifying the parent/ guardian about the report is based on the incident management action plan in response to the incident report.

 

14.5 When a report of abuse is provided, the safeguarding officer may direct the reporter to notify the information directly to the respective authorities such as the Police, Child Protection and the Reportable Conduct Scheme.

 

14.6 If the allegations of abuse is about a JY stakeholder / breach to code of conduct, the NSO needs to inform the National Coordinator for further internal complaint handling processes (Refer to flowchart in Appendix 3)

14.7 Each State / Territory has their own legislations / regulations that govern how adults should respond to child abuse. Refer to Appendix 2 for important State and Territory services / regulations for making reports.

  1. 1 CLOSING STATEMENT

15.1. JY Australia has formulated these Guidelines to safeguard children and is committed to abiding by it and implementing its provisions to the best manner possible.

15.2. JY Australia, in its meeting on 01 September 2020, approved this policy and has authorized its implementation from 1 November 2020.

15.3. The policy will be reviewed by JY Australia National Council at least once in three years or whenever necessary.

 

This Policy is approved by JY National Council on 25 September 2020 with an implementation date from 1 November 2020.

 

Mr Jento Joy

JY National Coordinator

Signed on behalf of JY Australia National Council

 

 

 

Annexure 1

CONTACT DETAILS OF JY REGIONAL & NATIONAL SAFEGUARDING OFFICERS

 

ACT Sarwin D’Souza
0468367386
safeguarding-act@jesusyouth.org.au
Leeba Samuel
0403893115
safeguarding-act@jesusyouth.org.au
NSW Dilson Joseph

0470398578

safeguarding-nsw@jesusyouth.org.au

Asha Matthew

0469132797

safeguarding-nsw@jesusyouth.org.au

 

NT Johny George

0426823559

safeguarding-nt@jesusyouth.org.au

QLD Vijoy Paul

0449239963

safeguarding-qld@jesusyouth.org.au

Rejymon Joseph

0422882873

safeguarding-qld@jesusyouth.org.au

 

SA Shaji Joseph

0421338443

safeguarding-sa@jesusyouth.org.au

Sini Mathew

0469044784

safeguarding-sa@jesusyouth.org.au

VIC Anish Benzi

0424528158

safeguarding-vic@jesusyouth.org.au

 

Tomy Issac Thekkumury

0466387232

safeguarding-vic@jesusyouth.org.au

WA Kevin James

0421 502 522

safeguarding-wa@jesusyouth.org.au

 

Vinitha Cyriac

0470 383 883

safeguarding-wa@jesusyouth.org.au

 

JY National Safeguarding Officer

Santhosh Augustin

0408437132

safeguarding@jesusyouth.org.au

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Annexure 2

 

INFORMATION ABOUT RESPECTIVE STATE AND TERITTORY STATUTORY REGULATIONS AND REPORTING REQUIREMENTS.

A2.1 AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY

 

 

 

  • Reporting Sexual Abuse- From 1 September 2019, failing to report¬†child sexual abuseto the¬†Police¬†is a criminal offence under the¬†Crimes Act 1900. The ‚ÄėFailure to Report‚Äô offence¬†applies to all adults¬†in the ACT who must tell Police if they have a reasonable belief a sexual offence has been committed against a child.

 

  • Failure to protect- the¬†Crimes Act 1900requires people in authority in a ‚Äėrelevant institution‚Äô to¬†protect¬†the child from sexual abuse or any substantial risk of sexual abuse¬†will be¬†committed in the future, It requires any person in authority in a ‚Äėrelevant institution‚Äô to take any necessary steps to prevent the sexual abuse from occurring when it is within their power to do so. ‚ÄėReligious organisations‚Äô come under the definition of relevant institutions.

 

 

 

  • To raise a concern, and seek advice and support in the Australian Capital Territory.
  • Emergency – Call¬†000¬†if a child is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection – ¬† ¬† ¬† Child and Youth Protection Services ACT (24 hours)

1300 556 729   Website

  • Police contact – AFP Police¬†Website

 

 

A2.2 NEW SOUTH WALES

 

 

  • Mandatory reporting ‚Äď In NSW, People in ‚Äėreligious ministry‚Äô are mandated under law to report to CYPS their concerns regarding potential physical and sexual abuse when they come across it through the course of their work. A person in¬†religious ministryor a person providing religion based activities to children (e.g. minister of religion, priest, deacon, pastor, rabbi, Salvation Army officer, church elder, religious brother or sister)

 

  • Reporting Sexual AbuseFrom 31 August 2018, all adults in NSW will be required to report information to Police if they know, believe or reasonably ought to know that a child (under 18 years of age) has been physically or sexually abused. Failing to report information to Police without a reasonable excuse will be punishable by up to two years‚Äô imprisonment, or five years‚Äô imprisonment if the person has accepted.

 

  • Failure to Protect- The new section 43B of the Crimes Act commenced on 31 August 2018. From this date, an adult working in an organisation that engages adult workers to engage in child related work will commit an offence if he or she knows another adult working there poses a serious risk of abusing a child (under 18 years), he or she has the power to reduce or remove the risk, and he or she negligently fails to do so. The offence covers failures to protect against sexual or serious physical abuse and will be punishable by up to two years‚Äô imprisonment.

 

  • Further detailed information re; Reporting child abuse in NSW :

 

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in New South Wales.
  • Emergency – Call¬†¬†000¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection- Department of Communities and Justice (formerly Department of Family and Community Services) NSW (24 hours)¬† ¬†13 21 11¬† ¬†Website
  • Police Contact – NSW Police Sexual Assault Reporting Options (SARO)¬†Website

 

 

A2.3 NORTHERN TERRITORY

 

  • Mandatory Reporting requirements: Every person in the NT is required to make a report if they reasonably believe that a child may have been, or is at risk of being, harmed or exploited. Section 26 of the Care and Protection of Children Act 2007 (NT) sets out the reporting obligations to safeguard the wellbeing of children in the NT. These reporting obligations are commonly referred to as ‚Äėmandatory reporting‚Äô.

 

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in the Northern Territory.
  • Emergency – Call¬† ¬†000¬† ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection – Territory Families Child Protection Hotline (24 hours)¬† ¬†1800 700 250¬† ¬†Website
  • Police Contact – If it is not an emergency, call police on 131 444 or contact your local police station.
  • Or national sexual assault information and support 24-hour hotline on 1800 737 732
  • NT Police Sex Crimes Division¬†08 8922 3617¬†¬†Website
  • Also report suspected child abuse to: Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

 

A2 .4 QUEENSLAND

 

 

  • Mandatory reporting ‚Äď In QLD, People in religious ministry are not classified as Mandatory reporters , however If you have formed a reasonable suspicion that a child has suffered, is suffering, or is at unacceptable risk of suffering, significant harm caused by physical or sexual abuse, and there is not a parent willing and able to protect the child from harm, call Child Safety.
  • Further detailed information re; Reporting child abuse in QLD: Reporting a reasonable / reportable suspicion of child abuse and neglect:

 

  • Blue card requirements in QLD:

https://www.qld.gov.au/law/laws-regulated-industries-and-accountability/queensland-laws-and-regulations/regulated-industries-and-licensing/blue-card-services

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in Queensland.
  • Emergency – Call¬† ¬†000¬† ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection –Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women¬†¬† 1800 177 135¬† / 3235 9999 (After hours)¬† / Child safety Enquiries Unit ‚Äď 1800 811 810 ¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Website
  • Brisbane: 1300 682 254
  • South East Queensland: 1300 679 849
  • South West Queensland: 1300 683 390
  • North Coast: 1300 703 921
  • North Queensland: 1300 706 147
  • Central Queensland: 1300 703 762
  • Far North Queensland: 1300 684 062
  • Police Contact- Reporting to Qld Police – InfoWebsite / Alternative reporting options¬†¬†Website

 

 

A2.5 SOUTH AUSTRALIA

 

 

 

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in South Australia.
  • Emergency – Call¬† ¬†000¬† ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection – Department of Child Protection Child Abuse Report Line¬† ¬†13 14 78¬† ¬†Website
  • Police Contact – SA Police Sexual Crime Investigations¬†08 8172 5555¬†(business hours only)¬†¬†Website

 

A2.6- TASMANIA

 

 

  • Mandatory Reporting – In Tasmania, mandatory reporting requirements are outlined in the Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1997. People who are legally obliged to report child abuse or neglect are sometimes called ‚Äėmandatory reporters‚Äô or ‚Äėprescribed persons‚Äô. In TAS ‚Äėministers of religion‚Äô comes under the prescribed persons list.

 

  • Failure to report the abuse of a childCriminal Code and Related Legislation Amendment (Child Abuse) Bill 2018¬†(Tas) (the Bill) passed Tasmanian Parliament on 11 September 2019 and received Royal Assent on 2 October 2019, creates a new offence requiring¬†all personswho have formed a reasonable belief that an abuse offence has been committed against another person who was a child at the time of the alleged offence to disclose that information to a police officer as soon as practicable.

 

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in Tasmania.
  • Emergency – Call ¬†000¬† ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection – Children and Youth Services¬† ¬†1300 737 639(24 Hours) or¬†1800 000 123¬†(advice and referral line)¬† Website
  • Police Contact – Tasmania Police Contact¬†Website

 

 

A2.7 VICTORIA

 

  • Relevant Legislations :
    • The Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (Vic) defines when a child is in need of protection (s 162) and the mandatory reporting obligations of certain professionals working in our community (ss 182, 184). https://www.legislation.vic.gov.au/in-force/acts/children-youth-and-families-act-2005/119
    • The Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 (Vic) sets out the Reportable Conduct Scheme.
    • The Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) creates the offences of ‚Äėfailure to protect‚Äô (s 49O) and ‚Äėfailure to disclose‚Äô (s 327) which place additional legal responsibilities in relation to reporting, if a reasonable belief has been formed that a child or young person is at risk of or experiencing child sexual abuse.

 

  • Mandatory reporting requirements: In Victoria, under the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005, mandatory reporters must make a report to child protection, if: in the course of practicing their profession or carrying out duties of their office, position or employment, they form a belief on reasonable grounds that a child is in need of protection from physical injury or sexual abuse. ‚ÄúPeople in religious ministry‚ÄĚ are classified as Mandatory reporters in Vic. https://providers.dhhs.vic.gov.au/mandatory-reporting

 

  • Failure to disclose child sexual abuse: The criminal¬†offence for failure to disclose child sexual abuse came into effect on 27 October 2014. Any adult who forms a reasonable belief that a sexual offence has been committed in Victoria by an adult against a child under 16 years of age must report that information to police unless they have a reasonable excuse. A reasonable excuse may include fear for safety or where the information has already been reported. The offence applies to all adults in Victoria, not just professionals who work with children. https://services.dhhs.vic.gov.au/reporting-child-abuse https://providers.dhhs.vic.gov.au/failure-disclose-offence-fact-sheet-word
  • Failure to protect: In Vic A new criminal offence for failing to protect a child under the age of 16 from a risk of sexual abuse commenced on 1 July 2015. The offence applies where there is a substantial risk that a child under the age of 16 under the care, supervision or authority of a relevant organisation will become a victim of a sexual offence committed by an adult associated with that organisation. A person in a position of authority in the organisation will commit the offence if they know of the risk of abuse and have the power or responsibility to reduce or remove the risk, but negligently fail to do so. This offence encourages organisations to actively manage the risks of sexual offences being committed against children in their care to protect them from harm. https://www.justice.vic.gov.au/safer-communities/protecting-children-and-families/failure-to-protect-a-new-criminal-offence-to
  • Reportable Conduct Scheme The Victorian Reportable Conduct Scheme seeks to improve organisations‚Äô responses to allegations of child abuse and neglect by their workers and volunteers. The scheme is established by the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 (the Act). The Commission for Children and Young People is responsible for administering the schemeThe Reportable Conduct Scheme has been designed to ensure that the Commission will
    be aware of every allegation of certain types of misconduct involving children in relevant organisations that exercise care, supervision and authority over children. https://ccyp.vic.gov.au/child-safety/resources/reportable-conduct-scheme-information-sheets#TOC-2
  • Working with children‚Äôs check requirements in VIC: In Victoria, a volunteer child-related work requires a Volunteer Check and an Employee check is required for a paid child-related work. https://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/
  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in Victoria.
  • Emergency – Call¬† 000 ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger
  • Child Protection – Child Protection Victoria¬† ¬†Website
    Eastern   1300 360 391
    Northern   1300 664 977
    Southern   1300 655 795
    Western   1800 075 599
    Western Metro Only   1300 664 977
    After hours   13 12 78
  • Police Contact – Local Sexual Offences and Child Abuse Investigation Team (SOCIT) locations and phone numbers¬†Website

 

A2.8 WESTERN AUSTRALIA

 

 

  • Mandatory Reporting in WA: Mandatory reporting of child sexual abuse in Western Australia is governed by the Children and Community Services Amendment (Reporting Sexual Abuse of Children) Act 2008. From 1 January 2009, these mandatory reporting provisions became part of the Children and Community Services Act 2004. People in religious ministry are not classified as mandatory reporters although everyone who is concerned that a child is suffering any form of abuse or neglect within state should report their concerns to the Department. https://mandatoryreporting.dcp.wa.gov.au/Resource%20Documents/Information%20booklet%20for%20mandatory%20reporters.pdf

 

 

  • Raise a concern, and seek advice and support in Western Australia.
  • Emergency – Call¬† ¬†000¬† ¬†if a child or vulnerable adult is in imminent danger.
  • Child Protection – Department of Communities, Child Protection and Family Support¬†Central Intake Team on 1800 273 889 or (08) 9223 1111 (Crisis Care Unit)¬†¬†or¬†¬†1800¬†199 008¬† (country free call)¬†Website
  • Police Contact- WA Police Sexual Assault Squad¬†¬†08 9428 1600¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†

Email: SexAssaultSquadSMAIL@police.wa.gov.au   Website

Annexure 3

FLOWCHART OF REPORTING SAFEGUARDING CONCERNS

Any queries regarding safeguarding for Jesus Youth Australia, Please contact

Santhosh Augustine

National Safeguarding officer

Mob – 0408437132

Email – safeguarding@jesusyouth.org.au