Background/Aims The City of Casey wanted to be aspirational and not just compliant when implementing the Victorian Child Safe Standards and Reportable Conduct Scheme.
Methods Council set out to embed a child safe culture throughout the organisation that would:
demonstrate a zero–tolerance approach towards child abuse,
ensure children and young people who engage with City of Casey services are safe and feel empowered to seek support,
equip staff and volunteers to recognise the signs of child abuse and manage reportable incidents effectively and in compliance with legislation; and
develop and maintain a robust governance framework.
Results Since the project began it has:
consulted with staff, parents and young people to better inform practical implementation of the Standards,
developed an internal online and face to face training program which has been rolled out to more than 2,263 internal stakeholders,
developed and implemented a centralised reporting and investigation procedure managed by an Internal Response Team,
developed Council’s Child Safety Policy;
drafted a Child Safe Procedural Guide to operationalise Council’s commitment to keep children and young people safe.
Conclusions Child safeguarding is now an integral part of our organisational strategy.
Council has transparent governance arrangements in place including accessible child safeguarding policies and procedures, a code of conduct, a risk management framework, and clear accountabilities for staff of all levels.
In addition, Casey is committed to continuous improvement and learning from incidents, identified risks and ongoing activities that engage children and young people with Council and in their safety and wellbeing.
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