The Working with Children Check is just one part of creating and maintaining a child-safe environment. It’s an organisation’s responsibility to ensure that their workers doing child-related work hold a Check, or the organisation may otherwise be committing an offence.
What’s the first thing I need to do?
Before a worker starts doing child-related work with your organisation, make sure you check the status of their Working with Children Check card.
It’s not enough to just see a worker’s card. Individuals must update their details to include the name of your organisation via their MyCheck account. Then, we’ll send you a letter of confirmation with a photocopy of their card. This ensures all records are kept up to date and we can contact you should any of the individual’s circumstances change, or the individual's card is surrendered or revoked.
Do my workers need a check?
If you’re unsure whether your workers or volunteers need a Check, you can use our interactive tool and answer some simple questions. If any of your answers describe an activity that does not fall within the Act's definition of child-related work, a message will appear saying that your worker does not need a Check.
Please note that the outcome of this tool doesn’t have to dictate your organisation’s own HR policy. If a message appears saying your worker does not need a Check, but you wish to apply more stringent rules to your workplace, you can choose to do so at your own discretion, subject to all other applicable laws. For more information, please view legislation for organisations.
Disclaimer: This tool is not a complete resource and does not form the basis of or constitute legal advice. You should consider your organisation's own circumstances, and where appropriate, seek professional advice.
Child Safe standards
You are free to implement your own policies and procedures in respect of creating child safe environments. It is important to note, however, that organisations that provide services or facilities for children, or employ children to provide goods or services- whether paid or unpaid- usually must comply with the Child Safe Standards that were introduced as part of the Victorian Government's response to the Betrayal of Trust Inquiry and have been recommended by the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. These are compulsory minimum standards under the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005. The standards help to keep children safe and protect them from harm and abuse.
Specific organisations must also comply with the reportable conduct scheme requirements that came into effect on 1 July 2017. For more information, visit the Commission for Children and Young People (External link) website.
Information about VIT registered teachers
If your workers are registered as teachers with the Victorian Institute of Teaching (VIT), they are exempt from the Check, unless they have been given a Negative Notice. A registered teacher who does child-related work, other than teaching in a school or early childhood service, must still notify us of the person or organisation whom the teacher is engaged by to do that child-related work by completing the Teacher notification (External link) form.
How do I manage worker’s Checks?
In addition to ensuring workers doing child-related work hold a Check, organisations should also:
• keep a record of the application receipt or card number of all workers doing child-related work in your organisation
• carefully look at workers’ cards and record the number, expiry date and card type (‘E’ for paid employees or ‘V’ for volunteers)
• securely keep all correspondence we send you about your workers
• ensure workers notify us within 21 days of commencing child-related work with your organisation with your correct address. They must also notify us whenever their personal and contact details change within 21 days of becoming aware of the change.
For further information for your organisation, please see organisation obligations.
Checking application status
If you’d like to know the status, type or expiry date of a single application or card, go to Application status. You’ll need to enter:
• the first 8 characters of the application or card number (you can request the application/card number if you don’t know it)
• the worker’s surname as entered on the application form or their card.
You must enter the exact spelling and exact number to access status details.
This service does not reveal any personal information apart from the name of the applicant or cardholder.
If you’re managing Checks for multiple workers, you may wish to download our status tracker below. It’s an Excel spreadsheet you can populate to help you oversee the status of all Checks within your organisation.