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Monday 10 October 2016

New standards to keep our kids safe – media release

Today we are launching an online campaign designed to raise awareness of new measures to keep all Victorian children safe from abuse and other mistreatment.

More than 40,000 organisations across the State that have direct and regular contact with children need to prepare to entrench new Child Safe Standards into their operations, ready for new laws that apply from 1 January 2017.

The Standards require organisations to think about what they need to do to make sure children are safe in their organisation.

The seven standards include: creating a culture of child safety, developing a child safe policy, code of conduct for staff and volunteers, improving recruitment practices, developing effective processes for responding to and reporting child abuse, better risk management and the participation of children.

There are also three principles that need to be embedded in each of the standards. They include promoting the cultural safety of Aboriginal children, the cultural safety of children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds and the safety of children with a disability.

The campaign is designed to make sure organisations are aware of the Standards and highlight the assistance available from the Commission for Children and Young People.

The campaign will run during October and November across a range of digital applications.  A range of resources are available for organisations that work with children on the Commission’s website www.ccyp.vic.gov.au.

Enshrining Child Safe Standards in legislation is one of a range of measures following the landmark inquiry into the handling of child abuse by religious and other non-government organisations and receipt of the report Betrayal of Trust.

Liana Buchanan, Principal Commissioner
Andrew Jackomos, Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People

 

Attributable quotes follow:

Quote: Minister for Families and Children, Jenny Mikakos MP

“Child Safe Standards are a crucial part of the Government’s work to protect children in Victoria.” 

“These standards were developed in consultation with 160 organisations across Victoria, and their introduction is a major milestone in the state’s history. We are making children’s welfare a priority for every organisation that works with our children and young people.”

Quote:  Principal Commissioner, Liana Buchanan

“Children have a right to be safe, and to be heard when they speak out.”

“We now know too many children have been exposed to harm in the past and we have a collective responsibility to prevent future abuse in organisational settings.”

“The Commission is working hard to raise awareness of the new Child Safe Standards and support organisations to meet the standards.”

“As a community, we all have a role to play in keeping children safe and the Commission looks forward to working with many thousands of organisations across Victoria as they make sure they have the right systems and processes in place.”

Quote: Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People, Andrew Jackomos

“Ensuring the cultural safety and being free from all types of abuse is critical to the safety, well-being and good health of Koori children.”

“The Commission has produced a tip sheet to help organisations to better understand how to keep Koori children safe.”

Media contact: Claire Lees M: 0411 630 861

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New standards to keep our kids safe – media release (197kb, Word)