We are committed to the safety and empowerment of children

Wellways Australia is committed to ensuring the safety, wellbeing and participation of children and young people. We act on this commitment through the:

  • implementation of a zero tolerance approach towards all forms of abuse and neglect of children and young people 
  • creation of child safe services and environments
  • engagement and empowerment of children and young people and their families

Our commitment complies with relevant state and territory obligations on this matter.

Our leadership 

Our Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) make sure we have appropriate systems and resources to ensure the safety and empowerment of children and young people. 

We appoint Child Safety Officers

Our CEO has appointed Child Safety Officers to provide information to our staff and volunteers regarding child safety and to provide support in response to complaints and concerns. Our Child Safety Officers have access to regular training and supervision to build their knowledge and skills to support the safety of children and young people.

We value and respond to diversity

We support and interact with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island children and young people, children and young people from multicultural backgrounds, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, intersex or queer(LGBTIQ) young people, and children and young people living with a disability. We acknowledge these children and young people and their families have individual needs and Wellways develops personalised strategies that promote their safety and participation. 

We have appropriate people 

We implement rigorous recruitment practices to ensure the safety of children and young people. All our staff and volunteers are screened to ensure they have satisfactory national police record checks, relevant working with children checks and references.

We ensure our staff and volunteers abide by our Code of Conduct which describes acceptable behaviours and relationships with children, young people and their families. 

We implement a range of training and supervision practices to make sure staff and volunteers can ensure the safety, wellbeing and participation of children and young people.

We act on concerns or complaints

Our staff and volunteers acknowledge their legal and moral obligation to ensure the safety and wellbeing of children or young people. Our staff and volunteers will report any allegation or suspected incident relating to the abuse (including sexual abuse) of a child or young person.

Our stance on this issue complies with relevant mandatory reporting responsibilities and the Victorian Laws regarding obligatory reporting of child sex abuse. 
We report any concerns to the relevant state or territory police and associated support services. We will also make a report to the Victorian Commission for Children and Young People and NSW Ombudsman if an allegation of child abuse is made against one of our employees or volunteers. 

We identify and manage risk 

Our staff and volunteers are vigilant and will report adult predatory behaviours such as ‘grooming’ that might expose children and young people to sexual abuse. We will report and act upon any concerns of grooming behaviour in line with Victorian Laws on this issue and other relevant state and territory laws.

We monitor our strategies

The implementation of these strategies are monitored and evaluated by our Board, CEO, Executive Leadership Team and Clinical Governance Committee. Where required, we will undertake investigations and delegate actions to develop and improve our systems to ensure the safety and empowerment of children and young people.