A child safe culture is a set of values and practices that guide the attitudes and behaviour of all staff. Employees and volunteers in child-related organisations have an important part to play in building a child safe culture.
Most staff in child-related organisations place children first and are motivated to do what is best for them. Therefore, implementing the Child Safe Standards should not be a burden but an effective way to embed child safety in the attitudes, behaviours and practices of everyone working in the organisation.
Role of leaders
Leaders play a vital role in creating and maintaining a culture where children’s rights and safety are prioritised.
Good leaders make sure there are clear rules and procedures and they model the expected behaviours and attitudes that support a child safe organisation. This helps set the culture of the organisation and the attitudes and behaviours of staff.
Leaders act as role models in prioritising child safety and make sure this commitment is reinforced across their organisation. They confirm that all their staff know that keeping children safe is everyone’s responsibility.
For more information about creating a child safe culture read the Guide to the Child Safe Standards.
Role of employees and volunteers
Child safety is a shared responsibility.
If you are an employee or volunteer in a child-related organisation, you need to understand and comply with your organisation's Code of Conduct. If your organisation doesn't have one, discuss this with your manager and suggest that you should have one.
Employees and volunteers in child safe organisations should understand that parents, carers and other important people in a child’s life have the primary responsibility for raising the children in their care. A child safe organisation talks to, consults with and invites families, caregivers and the broader community to participate in promoting the rights of children.
Staff can prevent abuse and maltreatment when they know how to identify it. To keep children safe it’s essential they understand how children are at risk of harm.
In-house training can assist staff to understand what child safe policies and procedures exist within the organisation. Where necessary, organisations should also consider external training. We offer free eLearning about keeping children safe in organisations.