Frequently Asked Questions

Where do I get Working With Children Checks?

The WWCC forms are no longer available at the Post Office and have to be downloaded from the website http://www.workingwithchildren.vic.gov.au/  See right hand side tab “Apply for a Check”. The applicant only needs to have their name, address and birthdate. The type of check is “Volunteers”.

 Under “Occupational Work Codes” scroll down to “Religious Organisations”.

There is no cost if you have a current passport photo, otherwise you pay from between $10 to $25 for photos.


Does everyone have to complete a pledge and how do we go about it?

All persons working with children under 18 years of age or vulnerable people, ought to complete a Volunteer Pledge. Such a Pledge can be completed online at the Safe Place Services’ website, at www.safeplaceservices.org.au  by going to the Safeguarding Churches menu from the homepage.    A PDF/hardcopy can also be downloaded of the pledge in the Resources Section, under the Local Church Policy documents.  People can print them off and keep at the local Church in hard copy.  The PDF/Word Docs is towards the bottom of the list at: http://safeplaceservices.org.au/resources/local-church-policy 

Local churches should keep a copy of either: (a) the e-mail receipt from the online pledge or (b) the hardcopy version. In addition to such copy/log, the local church should keep any records as required under WWCC legislation.

Are teachers covered?

If a teacher is a member of the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT) then they are covered. Part of their yearly membership includes a police check which covers more than the WWCC.

Here is a link to the VIT website where you can check if the teacher is up to date with their registration: http://www.vit.vic.edu.au/finditfast/Pages/teachersearch.aspx    All you need to do is enter the person's name and it will show you the VIT number and whether or not it is current.


Are Pastors covered?

If a Pastor is working within our conference then you don’t need to worry about them. Our HR department obtains a WWCC and keeps the records for each pastor. No need for you to worry about that.


Is an interstate WWCC valid in Victoria?

No, each state has its own records and you must apply individually to each state.

 

Tell me more about a SCAW (Safe Church Awareness Workshop)

Explain to members that we are working in conjunction with the Baptist Union of Victoria (BUV) and the Uniting Church Victoria (UCV).

 We have been commended as a Church organisation by the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry for all of the procedures and programs that we have put in place to keep our churches safe in conjunction with the BUV and the UCV.

 

The Workshop has 4 modules with an accompanying manual given to every attendant.

We encourage your church to be a ‘host church’ for one of these workshops on Sundays (or another day that suits). They are held at other venues/churches on Saturdays. As this is God’s work and we often train on Sabbaths we encourage our leaders to be trained, regardless of the day.

 

Cost of SCAW

The cost is $25 per person which pays for the manual, USB stick, travelling and accommodation expenses of two trainers for the day. It is common practice for training organisations to charge from $200 to $500 per day for training of this calibre.

 

How often do we need to attend the SCAW training?

 The AUC requires this training to be done within a three year time frame of the Local Church appointment.

 This training is in addition to any previous training that you may have attended for Safe Places and is very comprehensive and highly recommended.

 

How do I host SCAW training?

 To host a SCAW at your church (which we highly recommend) you can contact us, or look at the calendar on the BUV website, or choose a date and we will try to accommodate.

 The minimum number required to run a SCAW is 25 people and the maximum is 50 people. The only way for people to register is via the BUV website with their credit card details. If this is not possible then please contact Katrina.

 Some churches are opting to pay for all, or subsidising the training for their leaders. That is for the Leadership Team at your church to decide.

 Each SCAW workshop begins at 9:30am and finishes at 4pm. This is a whole day training and is not offered part days thereof.

 

How long must I wait until a new member can take up an office in my church?

If a new volunteer ‘appears’ wait at least six months and conduct a Screen Test/Referee check to ensure they are "above board".  See link to the Referee Check Consent Form: 

http://safeplaceservices.org.au/resources/local-church-policy.

 

Do we need to make structural changes to our Sabbath School rooms?

 We need to ensure that all Sabbath School rooms are easily monitored for example that they have open doors or have a window in the door for easy viewing. See page 11 of the policy.

 

Do we need to have sign in sheets for Sabbath Schools?

Yes, any child under the age of 18 must sign in and out or be signed in and out. You can make your own with date and times and signatures.
The records need to be scanned and kept ad infinitum.