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Changes to Child Safety Requirements

Child safety laws

The new, stronger laws for people working or volunteering with children were recommended as part of federal and South Australian royal commission, to help keep children safe in our community.

The requirement to have a valid child-related clearance from 1 July 2019, such as a working with children check, is covered by the following legislation:

Present and future Contractors working with The Department must comply with all Statutory Requirements as part of the General and/or Special Conditions of Contract.

With the new laws:

  • only the South Australian DHS Screening Unit can do a working with children check (organisations can no longer do their own background screening of workers and volunteers)
  • some work-types that didn't require checks to work with children under the old laws now have to have a working with children check
  • individuals can do their own application for a new working with children check, which helps make people job-ready
  • new working with children checks are portable between roles and jobs across South Australia
  • the new working with children checks are valid for five years and are continuously monitored.

It is an offence to:

  • work or volunteer in a child-related role without a working with children check
  • work or volunteer in a child-related role if you are 'prohibited from working with children'
  • employ a person or volunteer for a child-related role who doesn’t have a valid working with children check, or is prohibited from working with children.

Offences carry fines of up to $120,000 and/or prison sentences.

To find out if you need a check, go to the Department of Human Services Screening Unit website.

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