Children have a right to be safe and protected at all times, including when accessing services in the community.
The Children’s Protection Act 1993 requires certain organisations to provide a child safe environment. A child safe environment is an environment which is both child-safe and child-friendly, where children are valued and feel respected and encouraged to reach their full potential.
This requirement applies to organisations providing the following services wholly or partly for children:
From 11 April 2015, it will also apply to organisations providing the following types of services wholly or partly for children:
Organisation in this context includes a wide range of bodies who work with children, including businesses, services providers and incorporated and unincorporated groups. An organisation may also consist of a single person (e.g. a sole trader).
A child is any person less than 18 years of age.
As part of its obligation to establish and maintain a child safe environment, an organisation must:
From 11 April 2015, new requirements will apply to sole traders, people working in partnerships, the responsible authority of an organisation and volunteers (who are not engaged or appointed by an organisation) who work in the sectors listed above. These people will be prohibited from performing child related work (“prescribed functions”) unless they have obtained in the last three years:
For more information, go to relevant history obligations (Child Related Employment Screening).
Sole traders and people working in partnerships may download factsheet 7 – Child Safe Environments: Information for Sole Traders and People in Partnerships for more information.
Child safe environments also include a legal requirement for people to report suspected child abuse and neglect to the Child Abuse Report Line (13 14 78). This is known as mandatory notification.
Information sessions about the new laws will commence in March 2015. These information sessions will assist the following organisations and individuals to understand their new obligations concerning child safe environments:
To register your interest to attend an information session and for further enquiries regarding these legislative changes, please email DECDChildsafe@sa.gov.au
Find out more about:
If you have a question that is not answered on these pages, you can email DECDChildsafe@sa.gov.au or phone 08 8463 6468.