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Sport Australia Board Child Safe Commitment Statement

Sport Australia Board Child Safe Commitment Statement

Sport Australia is Australia’s primary national sports administration and advisory agency, and the cornerstone of a wide-ranging sports system. On behalf of the Australian Government, Sport Australia plays a central leadership role in the development and operation of the Australian sports system.

Sport Australia is strongly committed to Australian sport environments that are safe, supportive and friendly for children. We are committed to working with all involved in sport so that children can enjoy sport and feel safe, valued and encouraged to reach their full potential.

Child safety must be embedded in every Australian sporting organisation’s culture, reflected in their policies and procedures, and understood and practiced at all levels of the sport. This includes within our own organisation and facilities where children come to practice, play, learn and excel.

Sport Australia takes seriously our responsibility to provide an environment that is caring, nurturing and safe.

We are committed to keeping children safe

  • Through our Child Safe Sport Framework, we document our clear commitment to keeping children safe from abuse and neglect.  Child safe incorporates children and young people (up to 25 years of age), athletes and vulnerable people (an individual aged 18 years and above who is or may be unable to take care of themselves, or is unable to protect themselves against harm or exploitation by reason of age, illness, trauma or disability, or any other reason).
  • We communicate our commitment to all stakeholders and provide them access to the framework.

We promote equity and respect diversity

  • We actively anticipating children’s diverse circumstances and responding effectively to those with additional vulnerabilities.
  • We give all children access to information, support and complaints processes.
  • We pay attention to the needs of all children, particularly Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, children with a disability and children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

Our board members, employees, external providers and site users know the behaviour we expect

  • We ensure that each person involved in our delivery of services to children understands their role and the behaviour we expect in relation to keeping children and young people safe from abuse and neglect through application of the Child Safe Code of Behaviour.
  • We have position descriptions which clearly state relevant child safe requirements. Our employees and external providers are provided with the Child Safe Code of Behaviour as part of their induction.

We minimise the likelihood of recruiting a person who is unsuitable

  • We have appropriate measures in place to minimise the likelihood that we will recruit employees or external providers who are unsuitable to work with children.
  • We have recruitment procedures that ensure:
    • Our child safe commitment is communicated to potential applicants for positions.
    • Face-to-face interviews are held which includes child safety related questions.
    • Professional reference checks are undertaken.
    • Screening checks are undertaken, including identity, criminal record, working with children or equivalent checks and qualification checks for relevant positions

Induction and training is part of our commitment

  • We provide all new employees and external providers with information during their induction about our commitment to keeping children safe.
  • We have a process for ensuring all employees and external providers complete child safe training and support ongoing education and training to ensure child safe information is provided in an ongoing way.
  • We ensure that our employees and external providers have up to date information relevant to specific legislation applying in the state or territory they are based in or where they may travel to as a part of their duties.

We encourage the contribution of children, young people and their parents in relation to their involvement with Sport Australia’s programs, services and facilities

  • We involve and communicate with children and their families in developing a safe, inclusive and supportive environment.
  • We provide information to children and their families (such as brochures, posters, handbooks, guidelines) about:
    • Our commitment to keeping children safe and communicating their rights.
    • The behaviour we expect of our employees, external providers and of themselves.
    • Our policy about responding to child abuse.
  • We have processes for encouraging two-way communication with children and families to seek feedback and have a process for responding. We respect diversity and seek to facilitate effective communication and involvement.

Our board members, employees, external providers and site users understand their responsibility for reporting child abuse

  • We have processes in place for reporting and responding to child abuse:
    • Board members, employees and external providers and site users must report any concerns about child abuse and neglect
    • Board members, employees and external providers and site users must meet any legislated mandatory or other jurisdictional reporting requirements.
    • Board members, employees and external providers and site users must follow the specified process when reporting abuse or neglect.
  • Our board members, employees and external providers are provided with the Child Safe Framework and understand the implications of the framework for their role. We document any allegation, disclosure or concern regarding child abuse and monitor responses to all allegations, disclosures or concerns.

We maintain and improve our policies and practices

  • We are committed to maintaining and improving our framework, procedures and practices to keep children safe from neglect and abuse. We have assigned responsibility for maintaining and improving our framework and procedures to the Sport Australia Integrity Branch and Child Safe Committee.
  • We monitor our employees and external providers to ensure the Child Safe Framework is followed and communicate to ensure that they understand the appropriate practice and behaviour required in the work place.
  • We require our employees and external providers to disclose convictions or charges affecting their suitability to work with children and young people and we review police records and Working with Children Checks periodically.
  • We ensure that site users are made aware of the Child Safe Framework and the expectation to comply with all relevant sections when using Sport Australia’s facilities, programs or services.
  • We maintain our records and documentation in relation to all compliance aspects of the Child Safe Framework.
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