Child & Youth Risk Management Strategy main region
Hays Child & Youth Risk Management Strategy
Requirements for organisations
The Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 (the Act) and the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Regulation 2011 in Queensland require regulated organisations to develop and implement a child and youth risk management strategy (CYRMS) which aims to keep children and young people safe. The penalty for not developing and implementing a CYRMS is $2,523 (as at 1 July 2017). The eight mandatory requirements of a CYRMS are:
1. A statement of commitment to the safety and wellbeing of children and the protection of children from harm
2. A code of conduct for interacting with children
3. Written procedures for recruiting, selecting, and placing temporary workers
4. Policies and procedures for handling disclosures or suspicions of harm, including reporting guidelines
5. A plan for managing breaches of your risk management strategy
6. Risk management plans for high risk activities and special events
7. Policies and procedures for managing compliance with the blue card system
8. Strategies for communication and support
Whilst the requirement for a CYRMS is a requirement of the relevant Queensland laws, as a national business Hays has created its strategy to also apply to other States and Territories where relevant.
Statement of commitment of Hays Specialist Recruitment (Australia) Pty Ltd
Hays Specialist Recruitment (Australia) Pty Ltd (Hays) is a global specialist recruitment company. We are experts at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people and operate across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. With temporary assignments, we source temporary workers who are engaged by Hays, and then on-hired to a client organisation who then supervises, directs and controls the temporary worker. The client organisation is known as the ‘host employer’. Hays is committed to ensuring the safety and wellbeing of all children and young people and is dedicated to protecting them from harm. In providing temporary workers to Hays’ clients, Hays will endeavour to provide a safe and supportive environment for children and young people by:
• Obtaining a copy of the host employers child and youth risk management strategy (mandatory in QLD only), and if they do not have one, inquire as to why and escalate this to Hays QLD management
• Keeping in regular contact with our clients to ensure as far as is reasonably practical the appropriate treatment of children and young people
• Ensuring as far as reasonably practicable that all workers treat children and young people with respect and understanding at all times
• Ensuring that those temporary workers that we place with clients and who regularly deal with children and young people undergo (unless exemptions apply) the relevant State or Territory Working with Children Check (WWC Check) and hold the relevant licence or card (WWC Card) (as an example, the Blue Card in QLD and the Ochre Card in WA)
• Carefully selecting and screening temporary workers whose roles require them to have regular contact with children and young people
• Ensuring Hays’s CYRMS is promoted, enforced and reviewed
• Providing clear procedures for raising concerns or complaints
Code of conduct for interacting with children & young people
Who Must Comply with this Code?
• All temporary workers placed by Hays with host employers that require a WWC Check
• All of Hays’ internal employees that place temporary workers that require a WWC Check
Code of Conduct
• For each host employer in Queensland at which Hays places temporary workers, and the host employer advises Hays that the temporary worker will directly and/or individually deal with children under the age of 18 on a regular basis (or otherwise requires the temporary worker to obtain a WWC Card), they must have a child and youth risk management strategy
• Hays’ staff and temporary workers must:
• Use appropriate language when dealing with children and young people
• Not make inappropriate physical contact with any children or young people
• Not tolerate bullying, either amongst children and young people, or from adults towards children and young people, including within the host employer organisation
• Place the safety and welfare of children and young people above all else
• Report all violent and illegal acts
• Set a good example for children and young people by the way you dress, speak and act
Recruitment, selection and compliance regarding temporary workers
WWC Checks are most effective when supplemented by child-focused recruitment policies. While the WWC Check process is an assessment of a person’s eligibility to work with children and young people, the recruitment and selection process is the first opportunity to ascertain a person’s suitability to work with children and young people. Our compliance processes then assists us in monitoring temporary workers.
Recruitment & selection
As the leading global recruitment agency, Hays has a robust recruitment and selection process. The goal of this process is to identify and recruit someone who has the skills and attributes to fulfil the role requirements. The selection stage allows the host employer to choose the most suitable candidate for the position. It provides an opportunity to select people who will promote and protect the rights, interests and wellbeing of children and young people. When recruiting temporary workers, any assessment should be based on the position description developed by the host employer for the role and our aim should be to recruit someone who has the skills and attributes to fulfil the role requirements.
Hays’ Critical Processes must be followed in the recruitment of temporary workers.
The laws in each State and Territory are different, however ultimately employees who work with children and young people must hold a WWC Check (or an exemption card if applicable) if their work falls into a regulated category of employment.
Since a temporary worker would be considered an ‘employee’ of Hays, even though we do not supervise, direct or control temporary workers whilst they are with a host employer, where the host employer advises Hays that the temporary worker is required to have a WWC Check, Hays will ensure the temporary worker holds a WWC Card regarding each temporary worker.
Implementing the Policy
All temporary workers who work with children and young people are to receive a copy of the policy upon its adoption and are expected to familiarise themselves with the document.
Compliance with this policy will be monitored by each State/Territory’s management team via regular liaison with temporary workers and Hays’ clients.
Hays will review any allegations of breaches of this policy and will take steps to minimise the risk of any further breaches. Penalties can be imposed on Hays with regard to any breaches of the relevant working with children laws in each State/Territory.
Evaluation & review
This policy will be reviewed annually, in line with Hays’s review of its entire Child Protection Risk Management Strategy. The policy will be reviewed with regard given to any aspects of the document that require changes. This review will be carried out by Hays compliance, legal and with input from each State/Territory management team.
Induction & training
Any temporary workers that have been successfully recruited and screened and require a WWC Check will be provided a copy of this CYRMS.
Handling disclosures & suspicions of harm
Receiving a disclosure
When Hays’ internal employees or temporary workers are confronted with disclosures of harm or suspect harm to children and young people, they will respond professionally and in the best interests of the child or young person subjected to the alleged harm. Complaints will be dealt with promptly, seriously, sensitively and confidentially. Any Hays internal employee or temporary worker confronted with disclosures of harm will:
• Not react in a shocked or critical way
• Reassure the child or young person that they have done the right thing in notifying
• Say they need to tell someone else who can help the child or young person
• Reassure the child or young person that they will only tell someone who will make them safe
• Ultimately believe the child or young person and assume that they are telling the truth
• Ask only non-leading questions
• Only ask the child or young person enough questions to determine the need to report the matter to the Police Service or the relevant Government Department
Dealing with a disclosure
Following a disclosure of harm from a child or young person, the temporary worker must notify the host employer and Hays, and Hays and or the host employer will investigate whether the allegation should be reported to the relevant Police Service or Government Department. If the incident(s) are serious or criminal in nature, Hays’ response should be immediate. All other allegations should be actioned as soon as possible, preferably within 24 hours. For allegations of a serious or criminal nature, Hays will follow these guidelines:
• If the allegation involves a child at risk of harm, the incident should immediately be reported to the Police and/or the relevant Government Department
• Hays will contact the relevant Government Department for advice if there is any doubt whether the complaint should be reported
• If the child’s parent(s) or guardian are suspected of committing the abuse, Hays will report the allegation to the Police or the relevant Government Department immediately
Strict confidentiality, impartiality, fairness and due process must be maintained at all times. Under no circumstances will Hays conduct its own investigations into any serious allegations or allegations of a criminal nature.
Managing breaches of the risk management strategy
Hays will review any allegations of breaches of the CYRMS and will take steps to minimise the risk of any further breaches.
High risk activities and special events
In a labour hire arrangement, Hays as the labour hire company does not have control over the temporary worker or their workplace and the host employer is responsible for supervising, directing and controlling the temporary worker. Therefore it is important that Hays confirms with the host employer that they have a child protection risk management strategy (in Queensland) and otherwise has relevant procedures in place regarding the protection of children.
Compliance with Legislation
Hays will comply with relevant legislation by ensuring that all relevant temporary workers undergo the WWC Check and obtain proof of their ability to work with children and/or vulnerable people (where exemptions do not apply). Hays will respect the confidentiality of information relating to applications for WWC Checks and will maintain appropriate systems to protect the privacy of applicants.
Hays will implement and maintain an employee register that outlines all relevant temporary workers in states where this is a legislative requirement. This must include particulars of:
• WWC Card holders or applicants, and
• Exemption card holders or applicants
Hays will track all candidates in all states who have provided working with children and/vulnerable people clearance in their system ensuring they have valid registration at all times while engaged with Hays in a temporary work capacity.
Hays must advise the relevant WWC government agency if a temporary worker advises us that they have had a change in their police or disciplinary information during the application process or after a WWC Check has been issued.
Hays must not continue to employ the person in regulated, child-related employment until we have submitted a Change in police information notification form. As a listed employer in certain States, the relevant agency will notify us of any suspension or cancellation of the person's WWC Card.
In addition, in Queensland, Hays must advise Blue Card Services if the temporary worker stops working through Hays. Therefore, once a Hays consultant becomes aware that a temporary worker is no longer engaged through Hays, they must notify the Compliance team who will submit a ‘no longer with organisation’ form and update the employee register.
Cancellation or suspension of a WWC Check
If a temporary worker has had a WWC Check cancelled or suspended or receives a negative notice after a change in police information, Hays must:
• Ensure the person does not continue to undertake regulated child-related work through Hays, and
• If Hays continues to engage the person to perform work that is not child-related, ensure that appropriate policies and procedures are in place to manage any risks of harm to children and young people that may arise as a result of the person's ongoing engagement through the organisation
Strategies for communication and support
Copies of this CYRMS will be made available on the Hays Intranet under the Compliance section and a copy will be provided to Hays consultants who place workers that require WWC Checks and to the associated temporary workers. This will ensure that all of Hays’ relevant consultants and temporary workers understand what is expected of them with regard to providing a safe and friendly environment for children and young people.
HP-134-01 | © September 2018