Making organisations safer for children

Regulation of child safe standards in NSW – consultation report
Child protection First Peoples child protection Institutional responses to child sexual abuse Child safety New South Wales

The Office of the Children’s Guardian (OCG) is working to design and implement responses to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (the Royal Commission).

The NSW Government accepted, or accepted in principle, all 24 of the Royal Commission’s recommendations for making organisations safer for children. This included adopting the Royal Commission’s child safe standards and the in-principle acceptance that organisations that engage in child-related work should be required to meet the child safe standards.

This Consultation Report provides information about the feedback we received. It identifies areas or actions for the OCG to consider or undertake as we refine the approach. This report also builds on the discussion paper to provide more detail around what we are proposing the new child safe scheme could look like.

Key messages:

  1. Strong support for a principle-based approach to regulating child safe standards.
  2. Support for the scope of the scheme to include child-related sectors covered by the Working With Children Check scheme, or a broader range of services than the scope of the WWCC scheme.
  3. Strong support for the OCG to have a range of monitoring and enforcement powers to facilitate implementation of child safe standards in a responsive and collaborative way.
  4. Strong support for the OCG to partner with other government agencies or regulators, non government organisations and sector peak bodies to support implementation of child safe standards.
  5. Overwhelming support for building organisational capability and providing support to be the foundation of the approach to regulating child safe standards. Education and training were the most commonly suggested measures to drive capability improvement, followed by adequate guidance through child safe resources.
  6. Support for the community, parents and carers to encourage child safety by building awareness about child safe practice and holding organisations to account.
  7. Strong support for a staged approach to implementation with enough time and guidance for organisations to implement child safe standards.
  8. Support for greater clarity around how the child safe standards recommended by the Royal Commission interrelate with the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations, particularly from organisations that operate across jurisdictions.
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