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Department of Human Services

Mandatory notifiers and child safe organisations

As outlined in the South Australia mandatory reporting guide, certain people have a legal obligation to report a suspicion that a child or young person is, or may be, at risk, where this suspicion occurs in the course of their work or when carrying out official duties.

Mandated notifiers

Mandated notifiers are legally required to notify the Department for Child Protection if they suspect on reasonable grounds that a child or young person is, or may be, at risk.

Under the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 (Safety Act), the following people are mandated notifiers:

  • medical practitioners
  • pharmacists
  • registered or enrolled nurses
  • dentists
  • psychologists
  • police officers
  • community corrections officers
  • social workers
  • ministers of religion
  • employees or volunteers in an organisation formed for religious or spiritual purposes
  • teachers employed to teach in a school, preschool or kindergarten
  • employees or volunteers in an organisation that provides health, welfare, education, sporting or recreational, child care or residential services wholly or partly for children, being a person who:
    • provides such services directly to children or young people
    • holds a management position in the organisation and supervises or has direct responsibility for providing those services to children and young people.
  • An officer or employee of a prescribed organisation (Safety Act section 114) who holds a management position in the organisation and supervises or has direct responsibility for providing services to children.

Policies and procedures

Organisations must have in place policies and procedures to make sure mandated notifiers make appropriate reports if they suspect that a child or young person is, or may be, at risk.

Policies and procedures should include:

  • adequate information to help people identify when children and young people may be at risk and procedures for reporting this
  • what support is available for children and young people, staff and volunteers when a report is made
  • procedures for dealing with concerns of children or young people at risk perpetrated by an employee or volunteer.

Training

Some organisations offer formal mandatory notification training for staff and volunteers as best practice.

Safe environments - through their eyes training has been developed by the department to provide training suitable for organisations providing services to children and young people. You can access this training by contacting one of the public providers on the Safe environments – through their eyes public provider list (PDF 358KB).

Other training options include:

Organisations can also have an employee complete a train the trainer workshop and become qualified to deliver training to other staff and volunteers.

When offering formal training for everyone in the organisation is not possible, other strategies can be put in place, including:

  • offering formal training only to employees who regularly work with children or young people
  • ensuring all staff and volunteers have read and have access to the South Australia Mandatory Reporting Guide
  • including child protection as a standing item on team meeting agendas
  • sharing relevant articles or information about issues relating to child protection.

Contact

Child safe environments

Phone: 8463 6468
Email: DHS.childsafe@sa.gov.au

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Provided by:
SA Department for Human Services
URL:
https://dhs.sa.gov.au/services/community-and-family-services/child-safe-environments/creating-child-safe-environments/obligations-of-mandatory-notifiers-and-child-safe-organisations
Last Updated:
05 Jul 2018
Printed on:
18 Nov 2019
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