New scheme will keep children safer in NSW

NSW Children’s Guardian Janet Schorer has welcomed the NSW Child Safe Scheme that begins operation today.

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This scheme embeds the 10 Child Safe Standards recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse in the Children’s Guardian Act 2019 to guide child safe practice in NSW.

From today, certain child-related organisations including those in the Education, Early Childhood, Health, Community Service and Youth Justice sectors, must implement the Child Safe Standards, along with local councils, religious organisations providing services to children and sport and recreation organisations providing services to children.

“The Standards can be adapted flexibly to suit each organisation. With the right focus and effort, the Standards will support all child-related organisations to develop a strong culture that keeps children safe,” Ms Schorer said.

The scheme extends the powers of the Office of the Children’s Guardian to monitor, investigate and enforce implementation of the Child Safe Standards to support the safety and wellbeing of children and young people.

“As we roll out the scheme, we want to find out from organisations how well they understand the Child Safe Standards, and what resources and training organisations have used or may need. Take the survey now, and we’ll follow up with another survey in 12 months to see how you’re tracking,” Ms Schorer said

“We know that many organisations are already well underway in implementing the Child Safe Standards while others will need more support. We will provide that support, with capability building being the foundation of our approach,” she said.

“Our first year of capability building with a focus on leadership, culture and governance. We have Child Safe Officers to provide tailored support to the health, education, early education, religious organisations, sport, recreation and disability sectors. This reflects the importance of education in changing attitudes and cultures that may make children vulnerable to all forms of abuse.

“The Child Safe Scheme underpins our firm commitment to protect children from abuse in organisations and implement key, preventative recommendations of the Royal Commission. It further strengthens our ability to improve outcomes for children and young people in NSW,” Ms Schorer said.

Learn about the Standards in the Guide to the Child Safe Standards (PDF) and show support for the Standards by using the assets in this social media kit.

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