What is independent oversight?
Independent oversight seeks to strengthen the integrity of institutions by reviewing the decisions they make and the services they deliver in the performance of their duties. This ensures that institutions are compliant and accountable in their responsibility to protect children within their system or service.
Recommendations for independent oversight of organisations engaged in child-related work
11 recommendations across four areas of independent oversight about which the Department of the Premier and Cabinet has been asked to provide advice to Government. These are:
Introducing, monitoring and enforcement of
Child Safe Standards. These are ten key elements, developed by the Royal Commission, that are needed to create child safe institutions.
Establishing a legislative
reportable conduct scheme. As defined by the Royal Commission, a reportable conduct scheme obliges heads of certain institutions to notify an oversight body of any reportable allegation, conduct or conviction involving any of the institution's employees. For this work, a reportable allegation would relate to child abuse.
Accreditation scheme for government and non-government
Out of Home Care providers, audits of accredited Out of Home Care providers to ensure compliance with accreditation standards. The Royal Commission stated that the accreditation of out of home care providers would help protect children by promoting improved standards, transparency and public confidence in the quality of out-of-home care services.
Independent oversight of youth detention by staff with expertise in child trauma and identification of child sexual abuse issues. The Royal Commission indicated that detention environments may present higher levels of risk of child sexual abuse, as compared to many other institutional contexts.
These recommendations will be relevant to a wide range of government and non-government organisations that work with children across Western Australia. Their implementation will be an important way to improve safety for children who access these services. Please click here for a document outlining the full details of each recommendation.
How will the Western Australian Government implement these recommendations?
The Department of the Premier and the Cabinet will be leading the development of advice for Government's consideration on options for how to implement the independent oversight recommendations in order to keep children in Western Australia safe from abuse.
Communication and engagement
The Department is currently developing a communications and engagement strategy to guide communications, consultation and engagement that will occur during the course of its work. This will ensure that the many organisations that may be affected by the Royal Commission's recommendations are appropriately involved in the development of plans for their implementation, and ultimately, in making Western Australia a safer place for children and young people.
For any questions or queries please contact the team at firstname.lastname@example.org