Screening checks free for volunteers from 1 November 2018
From 1 November 2018, all Department of Human Services (DHS) screenings for volunteers, including volunteering with children and vulnerable people will be free.
Currently, the cost of a DHS volunteer screening is $59.40, which is paid by either the volunteer or the organisation they’re volunteering for.
South Australia is fortunate to have one of the highest volunteering rates in Australia, with more than 920,000 South Australians volunteering each year. More than 25% of DHS screening applications are for volunteers.
Removing the costs associated with screening clearances recognises the incredibly important contribution volunteers make to the community and makes it easier for people to volunteer.
Screening is about checking a person’s suitability for a role working or volunteering with children and other vulnerable people. A DHS screening clearance is a legal requirement for people who wish to volunteer with people with disability, and may be required for people who want to volunteer with children or older people.
Free screening applications may mean more organisations will decide to screen their volunteers, which will contribute to making the community safer for everyone.
It is up to the volunteer organisation to decide if a volunteer needs a DHS screening clearance. Screening applications are requested by organisations, for individual volunteers or employees, who then complete the application online.
We expect an increase in applications from 1 November 2018, which may mean they take a bit longer to complete than usual. Where possible, organisations requesting screening clearances are encouraged to plan ahead and allow for up to six weeks for the screening to be completed.
Screening applications are submitted online. If a volunteer doesn't have access to the internet, is under the age of 18 or is a new arrival to Australia, they, or the organisation making the request, can contact the screening unit and ask for a paper application form.
Visit www.screening.sa.gov.au for more information.