The Children's Act came into effect on 1 July 2015 involving safety checking regulations for the children’s workforce.
The regulations require all paid people who work with children for government-funded organisations to be safety checked, and to have these safety checks updated every three years. This also applies to unpaid people working with children as part of an educational or vocational training course.
The new safety checking regulations will make it easier to identify the small number of people who are a risk to children.
Employers are accountable for ensuring safety checks are done, even if someone is doing it on their behalf. This is about more than checking criminal histories. It involves a careful process of information gathering and assessment that includes confirming identity, interviews, checking referees, and considering risk.
The required children’s worker safety check is the same for 'core' or 'non-core' workers. There are two key components of compliance with the legislation.
Children's worker safety checks include:
Any organisation that wishes to undertake police vetting needs to be an authorised agency.
Pinnacle is able to use their authorised agency status to provide a police vetting service for those practices that wish to use it OR practices can apply to become an authorised agency via the NZ Police website.
For more information about Police vetting visit the NZ Police website.
Please be aware that there is a minimum 20 day turnaround for obtaining police vetting reports.
New children's workers cannot be left unsupervised with children until all aspects of the checks have been completed. You may therefore choose to make an offer of employment conditional on satisfactory outcomes.
The Act contains significant penalties for failing to meet the requirements, including a fine of up to $10,000.
We have developed a toolkit of resources for practices to use for worker safety checks. You can find these resources at the bottom of this page.
These resources are:
The files listed above can be downloaded at the bottom of this page.
NZ Police Vetting request and consent forms Word and PDF versions can be found on the NZ Police website.
The steps are outlined below. For more information see the Pinnacle police vetting guide which can be downloaded at the bottom of this page.
These incur a cost. Pinnacle has an agreement to submit NZ Police Vetting requests free of charge but not Australian Police Checks which incur a cost that will be on-charged to your practice.
The Act states providers of services to children must adopt child protection policies.
Please refer to HealthyPractice® (link below) for assistance in developing policies for your practice.