Today marks a year since the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) endorsed the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations on 19 Feb, 2019, an important milestone for child safety in Australia.
What are the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations?
The National Principles for Child Safe Organisations (National Principles) were direct recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which found that the sexual abuse of children has occurred in almost every type of institution where children reside or attend for educational, recreational, sporting, religious or cultural activities.
The National Principles require that every organisation in Australia that works or engages with children and young people, provides a safe environment where children are protected from harm.
Although significant progress has been made, there is still a lot of work to be done to ensure a safe future for children all over Australia.
What should organisations do to ensure they are child safe?
“Organisations that provide services to children and young people need to have a concerted focus, and conduct purposeful reviews on their systems, processes and culture to ensure that they’re meeting the requirements of the National Principles. Meaningful organisational change is unlikely to occur without this,” said Jane French, Child Wise Executive Director
As Commonwealth entities work towards the implementation of the National Principles as one of the requirements of the Commonwealth Child Safe Framework, organisations that work or engage with children and young people are encouraged to start the year with a plan towards becoming a child safe organisation.
“All organisations working with children must take steps to prevent abuse. You cannot assume that child abuse does not, and cannot happen, within your organisation.”
How we can help your organisation meet the requirements of the National Principles
To help organisations improve their child safety practice and strengthen their capacity to create and maintain a child safe environment long-term, Child Wise provides a range of flexible and tailored services including consulting, coaching and accreditation run by a multidisciplinary team of experts.
Call 1300 CHILD WISE or email firstname.lastname@example.org to speak to one of our child safety experts.