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Child safe and friendly policies

“The centre should have clear instructions on appropriate behaviours and what to do if something happens, like in public swimming pools.” Young person

National Principle 10: Policies and procedures document how the organisation is safe for children and young people.

Child safe and friendly policies are part of a governance framework that includes an overarching child safe and friendly policy, a risk management strategy and a code of conduct. The overarching policy outlines the organisation’s commitment to child safety and actions that will be taken to meet this obligation.

An effective code of conduct provides direction about the behaviour, relationships, attitudes and responsibilities expected of board members, staff and volunteers, and stipulates the process that will be followed if the code is not observed. Other detailed policies and processes aim to reduce the likelihood of abuse occurring and increase the likelihood of any abuse being discovered.

Policies developed in consultation with stakeholders will assist in making sure they make sense to the organisation’s circumstances and can be implemented. Development and review of policies and procedures should strive to incorporate participation of children and young people and utilise any feedback received as part of complaints processes.

Parties undertake to protect the child from all forms of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. (Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 34)

Commissioner's resources

National Principles for Child Safe Organisations WA: Guidelines

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National resources

Child Safety and Wellbeing Policy template - Australian Human Rights Commission

Other resources and examples

Child Safe Resources - NSW Office of the Children’s Guardian

Child Safe Code of Conduct - NSW Office of the Children’s Guardian

A guide for creating a child safe organisation: Tip sheets - Commission for Children and Young People Victoria

Resources for Child Safe Standards Victoria - Victorian Government 

Note that the state of Victoria has legislated it’s own seven child safe standards which have similarities to the ten National Principles. In WA, the ten National Principles apply.

Safeguarding Children policies - YMCA Brisbane

Explore the National Principles