Children’s Protection Policy

Preamble

This policy was written to demonstrate the strong commitment of MYOMASTERS (MYOMASTERS)  to child safety and establishing and maintaining child safe and child friendly environments.

Context

This policy reflects our commitment to provide a safe environment where every person has the right to be treated with respect and is safe and protected from harm.

It complies with our obligations under the Children’s Protection Act 1993, including:

  • Section 8B – 8D – child safe environments and criminal history assessments for people working with children; and
  • Section 11 – Mandatory reporting.

Commitment to child safety

All children who come to MYOMASTERS have a right to feel and be safe.  We are committed to the safety and well-being of all children and young people accessing our services and the welfare of the children in our care will always be our first priority. We aim to create a child safe and child friendly environment where all children are valued and feel safe.

Children’s participation

MYOMASTERS encourages and respects the views of children and young people who access our services.  We listen to and act upon any concerns that children, young people or their families raise with us.

We ensure that children, young people and their families know their rights and how to access the complaints procedures available to them.

We value diversity and do not tolerate any discriminatory practices.

Recruitment practices

MYOMASTERS takes all reasonable steps to ensure that it engages the most suitable and appropriate people to work with children.   We employ a range of screening measures and apply best practice standards in the screening and recruitment of employees and contractors.  We interview and conduct referee checks on all employees.

We ensure that criminal history information is dealt with in accordance with the Child Safe Environments: Standards for dealing with information obtained about the criminal history of employees and volunteers who work with children, issued pursuant to Section 8A, Children’s Protection Act 1993.

Support for employees and volunteers

MYOMASTERS seeks to attract and retain the best employees.  We provide support and supervision so people feel valued, respected and fairly treated.  We ensure that employees who work with children have ongoing supervision, support and training so that their capacity is developed and enhanced to promote the establishment and maintenance of a child safe environment.

Strategies we have implemented include:

  • All new employees undergo induction and receive a copy of our child safe policy and code of conduct.
  • All employees receive regular supervision sessions that include a focus on ongoing learning about child protection and other matters that affect children and young people.
  • All employees must hold and maintain a National Criminal History Check and a DCSI Working With Children Check.

Reporting and responding to suspected child abuse and neglect

MYOMASTERS will not tolerate incidents of child abuse.

All employees understand their obligation to notify the Child Abuse Report Line on 13 14 78 as soon as practicable if they have a reasonable suspicion that a child has been, or is being, abused or neglected.

From time to time we provide opportunities for employees to attend information sessions about these mandatory reporting obligations.  We also ensure that employees have access to relevant information resources such as:

We ensure that support is also available for the employee making the report, particularly where an ongoing service is provided to the child, young person and their family.

Supporting children, young people and their families

MYOMASTERS  recognises that even where a report is made, we may still have a role in supporting the child or young person.  This support may include:

  • Referring the child, young person or their family to other appropriate services
  • Displaying information about services that can assist children and their families (such as the Kids Helpline and Youth Healthline) in areas accessed by children and their families.

Dealing with reports or concerns relating to the actions of an MYOMASTERS employee or contractor

In addition to making a report to the Child Abuse Report Line(131 478), employees and contractors must also report to the owner if reasonable suspicion is formed that a child has been, or is being, abused or neglected by another employee or contractor.

In response to any report to management concerning a member, employee or contractor of MYOMASTERS, the owner may determine to take disciplinary action.

Other protective actions may also be introduced to ensure the safety of children and young people within the clinical care of MYOMASTERS.

Child Protection guidelines for employees and contractors of MYOMASTERS

Caring for children and young people brings additional responsibilities for employees and contractors of this MYOMASTERS.

All employees and contractors of MYOMASTERS are responsible for promoting the safety and well-being of children and young people by:

  • Ensuring that a parent or carer is present for all persons 16 years and under.
  • When informed consent is required to be given, this shall be given by the parent/carer in consultation with the
  • The child has the right to ask a parent / carer to leave the treatment room during the treatment, and the parent shall stay on the premises for the duration of the treatment.
  • Ensuring the safety and welfare of the child or young person is paramount at all times.
  • Treating all children and young people with dignity, equality and respect.
  • Adhering to this organisation’s child safe policy at all times.
  • Listening and responding appropriately to the views and concerns of children and young people within the organisation.
  • Taking all reasonable steps to ensure the safety and protection of children and young people within the organisation.
  • Ensuring children and young people understand their rights and explaining to the child in age-appropriate language what they can expect when participating in a service, activity or program offered by the organisation.
  • Responding quickly, fairly and transparently to any serious complaints made by a child, young person or their parent/guardian.
  • Notifying the Child Abuse Report Line on 13 14 78 as soon as practicable if they have a reasonable suspicion that a child or young person has been or is being abused or neglected.

Employees/contractors will not:

  • Take part in any unnecessary physical contact with a child or young person.
  • Discriminate against any child or young person because of age, gender, cultural background, religion, vulnerability or sexuality.
  • Develop any ‘special’ relationships with children or young people outside of the professional relationship.

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