It is an offence to engage in child related work without a clearance. This is pursuant to the Child Protection (Working with Children) Act 2012. The maximum penalty for this offence is a fine and or 2 years imprisonment.
Engaging in Child related work means to have face to face or physical contact with a child while at work.
The Act considers that a “child” is any person under the age of 18.
The act allows for certain exemptions. It is important to talk this through with a lawyer if you are relying on one of the exemptions.
If you have applied for a working with children check clearance number and it has been refused you have options. You can apply for an enabling order and administrative review through the NCAT. A number of cases have been recently decided which provides us with insight into the likelihood of success in any particular case.
Employers and Sporting clubs who rely on employees and volunteers working with children are expected to be compliant with the legislation.
Firstly, they must seek out working with children clearance check numbers from their staff/volunteers. Next, they check through the online portal of the Office of the Children’s Guardian to make sure the number is approved. There are strict penalties for failing to comply with the legislation. There are also penalties for failing to keep proper records of the mandatory on line checks.
Where To Next?
Brady and Associates Lawyers are experienced in representing our clients. We represent clients at the NCAT seeking reviews of the Office of Children’s Guardian decisions. We also appear in the Local court for clients charged with offences against the Working with Children’s Check legislation.
If you are an Employee or Volunteer and you need to know your available options you are very welcome to contact us today.
Also, if you are an Employer or Sporting Club needing advice in this area, you are also very welcome to contact us and we will provide you with the information you need.
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