Working with Vulnerable People

New laws designed to reduce the likelihood of harm and create safer environments for all children and vulnerable people have been enacted in Tasmania. The Registration to Work with Vulnerable People Act 2013 (the Act) makes it compulsory for many people who associate with children and other vulnerable people to be registered to Work with Vulnerable People. To comply with the Act, Catholic Education in Tasmania (CET) requires School Support employees, volunteers and external provider to be registered to Work with Vulnerable People with effect 1 October 2015.

 

Working with Vulnerable People Policy and Procedures

Working with Vulnerable People Registration

Do I need to apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

When do I apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

How do I apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Working with Vulnerable People Policy and Procedures

The Tasmanian Catholic Education Commission (TCEC) has approved a Working with Vulnerable People Registration Policy for Catholic Education in Tasmania.

 

Working with Vulnerable People Registration

Working with Vulnerable People (WWVP) Registration is a compulsory background check for many people who work or volunteer with children and vulnerable people in Tasmania. The Registration system establishes mandatory minimum checking standards that will apply across all regulated activities.

Excluding people with a known history of certain behaviour is a fundamental part of ensuring a child-safe environment in our schools. In addition to CET’s existing risk reduction processes such as National Police Criminal History Checks (NPCHC), employees, contractors and volunteers are now legally required to undergo WWVP Registration, as prescribed in the Act. Both processes are integral parts of CET’s strategy to create and maintain a child-safe environment.

What records are assessed?

WWVP Registration is conducted by the Tasmanian Department of Justice Registrar. When conducting a risk assessment of an applicant, the Registrar may take in to account –

      (a) the applicant's criminal history, including his or her national and international criminal history;

      (b) any offence the applicant has been found guilty of, even if a conviction has not been recorded in respect of the offence or the conviction has been annulled;

      (c) any offence the applicant has been charged with and the result of that charge, including whether it is a pending charge;

      (d) any order under the Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1997, the Family Violence Act 2004 or the Justices Act 1959 that relates to the applicant; and

      (e) any other matter the Registrar considers relevant in respect of the applicant, including any inappropriate professional conduct, sexual, violence or drug-related matters.

Ongoing monitoring

Part of the WWVP Registration process means that registered persons are subjected to ongoing monitoring for relevant new records for the three-year life of their WWVP Registration. Some records will trigger a risk assessment which may lead to WWVP Registration being cancelled.

 Back to top

Do I need to apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

The Act makes it compulsory for certain people who work or volunteer with children and vulnerable people in Tasmania to hold Registration. In addition, the Act allows organisations to adjust screening requirements to suit their particular organisation. Catholic Education in Tasmania requires WWVP Registration for:

School Support Employees

  • All Catholic Education School Support employees based at a school; and
  • All Catholic Education Office and Regional Office based employees.

School Support Employees will meet the cost of Registration.

Teachers

Teachers who hold a current Teacher Registration with the Teachers Registration Board of Tasmania do not need to hold WWVP Registration until 1 January 2017 where they are currently engaged in their profession. For example:

  1. A person who is a registered Teacher and is coaching as part of their employment related duties is not required to be registered until 1 January 2017.
  2. However a person who is a registered Teacher and who volunteers to coach the local soccer team is required to be registered.

The difference is that the activity in 1 is an inherent requirement of the person’s employment as a Teacher whereas the activity in 2 is voluntary and not related to their employment.

Teachers who require WWVP Registration will meet the cost of Registration.

Volunteers

All volunteers.

Volunteers are requested to meet the costs of WWVP Registration, however Volunteers who are experiencing genuine financial hardship are encouraged to speak with the Principal or the TCEO to discuss fee assistance options to meet WWVP Registration costs.

External Providers

All external providers including Self-Employed, Contractors and Sub-contractors engaged on school sites are required to comply with the Tasmanian Catholic Education Commission (TCEC) Working With Vulnerable People Policy, regardless of whether the activities of the provider are associated with children or not.

The external provider will meet the cost of Registration.

This requirement is relevant to ALL types of providers across Catholic Education in Tasmania including but not limited to;

  • Maintenance/Building/Grounds related contractors
  • Cleaning contractors
  • Canteen personnel
  • Music Tutors
  • Sports Contractors and their coaches
  • Practicum Students

WWVP Registration is not required by:

  • Children under 16 years of age;
  • People dropping off or picking up children;
  • Relatives attending school events such as assembly, sports carnivals, concerts etc where they are not directly participating; and
  • WWVP Registration will not be required for external providers working within the fenced area of a construction project if the following is in place:

If a school, or the TCEO on behalf of a Systemic School, engages a construction company as a Principal Contractor (as defined in the Tasmanian WHS Regulations 2012) and the Principal Contractor takes possession of a portion of the school under that construction contract.  This is because for the duration that the Principal Contractor has possession of the site under the Construction project it is no longer property under control of the school or Archdiocese, and the sheer volume of contractors engaging with the project would make administration of WWVP Registration untenable. 

 Back to top

When do I apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

Who

Status

When to Apply

School Support Employees

New

Prior to commencement

Existing

Prior to the expiry of your current WWVP Registration

Volunteers

New

Prior to commencement

Existing

Prior to the expiry of your current WWVP Registration

Teachers (where required as an inherent requirement of employment)

New or Existing

Before 1 January 2017

External Providers

New

Prior to commencement

Existing

Prior to the expiry of your current WWVP Registration

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘New’ status individuals must ensure they have their Working with Vulnerable People Registration prior to commencing CET employment or engagement.

‘Existing’ status individuals must apply for new WWVP Registration prior to the expiry of their current WWVP Registration as a condition of continuous employment / engagement. It is recommended that six weeks be allowed for processing.  

It is an offence to be employed or engaged in a regulated activity without current WWVP Registration.

What if I Volunteer and Work with Children?

If you intend to use your WWVP Registration for Volunteering and Employment during the three years of registration you should advise this at the time of your initial application.  Completing this detail on the application will save applicants from incurring additional cost at a later stage.

 Back to top

How do I apply for Working with Vulnerable People Registration?

STEP 1: Complete an online application form at justice.tas.gov.au/working_with_children

What do I need to complete the online application?

  • an internet connection
  • an email address (so the department can advise it has received your details)
  • a printer of reasonable quality and access to Adobe Acrobat Reader or Open Office to print your 'Application Receipt'

If no printer is available, you must record the application reference number and take that to Service Tasmania.

What information do I need to have ready for my application?

  • the full address of every place you have lived over the last five years (including dates you lived at the addresses);
  • details for each organisation you will be doing paid or volunteer child-related work for including details such as the name, address, phone number, contact person, start date and email address;
  • your place of birth;
  • details of periods you have lived outside of Australia (including countries and dates you lived in those countries);
  • details of any overseas offences;
  • details of any family violence orders, restraint orders, apprehended violence orders, child protection orders (taken out against you); and
  • driver’s licence number and expiry date if you intend to use this to prove your identity.

When applying, the form requests details of a school contact. The following details should be included:

Tasmanian Catholic Education Office
5 Emmett Place
New Town TAS 7008

Contact Person: Melissa McGuire
Contact Phone: (03) 6210 8888
Contact Email:

If you cannot access the online system, call (03) 6210 8888 and a TCEO Contact Officer will assist you.

Your Application Receipt will outline further requirements to ensure your application can be processed (see STEP 2 below).

STEP 2: You must attend a Service Tasmania Shop with your Application Receipt to:

  • verify your identity;
  • have your photo taken; and
  • pay the application fee shown on your Application Receipt.

Please note: If you have lost your Application Receipt or reference number, please present to Service Tasmania and speak to a Customer Service Operator.

N.B. The Department of Justice cannot begin to process your application until Steps 1 and 2 have been completed.

STEP 3: The Department of Justice will assess and process your Application and issue the appropriate Assessment Notice and WWVP Registration Card directly to you.

In general, you should allow six weeks to receive your Assessment Notice and WWVP Registration Card. If notification of an outcome has not been received after six weeks, you should contact the WWVP Registration Screening Unit at workingwithchildren@justice.tas.gov.au.

Payment of WWVP Registration Applications and Renewals

Employees, Volunteers and External Providers will be responsible to pay the prescribed fees specified in Schedule 1 of the Registration to Work with Vulnerable People Regulations 2014, for a three-year registration.

The fee is non refundable. This means you pay the fee regardless of whether you withdraw your application or if your application is unsuccessful.

The fee can be paid by cash, Visa, MasterCard, EFTPOS, cheque, money order.

 Back to top

Frequently Asked Questions

The Working with Vulnerable People Act 2013 (the Act) commenced on 1 July 2014. The Act requires people who have contact with vulnerable people while engaging in regulated activities and services to register with the Department of Justice. In addition, the Act allows organisations to adjust screening requirements to suit their particular organisation. The following FAQ’s clarify the requirements of Catholic Education in Tasmania:


Why is Working With Vulnerable People (WWVP) Registration important?

Catholic Education in Tasmania is a Child Safe Organisation committed to child safe practices and procedures, which includes ensuring that all school workers, volunteers and external providers with access to children are suitably screened to work with children. WWVP Registration is a key element of the screening process.


How is the new Working With Vulnerable People (WWVP) Registration different to the current system?

A WWVP Registration is a more rigorous and robust background checking system than that of the National Police Criminal History Check (NPCHC), which CET currently undertakes on all employees and volunteers. Unlike a NPCHC that is conducted at a point in time and is only current at the time of issue, people who hold a WWVP Registration will be subject to ongoing monitoring by the Department of Justice for the duration of the registration period.


Who needs the new WWVP Registration?

School Support Employees

  • All Catholic Education School Support employees based at a school; and
  • All Catholic Education Office and Regional Office based employees.

Volunteers

All volunteers.

External Providers

All external providers including Self-Employed, Contractors and Sub-contractors engaged on school sites, including but not limited to:

  • Maintenance/Building/Grounds related contractors
  • Cleaning contractors
  • Canteen personnel
  • Music Tutors
  • Sports Contractors and their coaches
  • Practicum Students

Teachers

Teachers who hold a current Teacher Registration with the Teachers Registration Board of Tasmania and who are engaged in a regulated activity in an employment-capacity do not need to hold WWVP Registration until 1 January 2017. However, Teachers who participate in any regulated activity in a non-employment related (e.g. volunteer) capacity are required to hold WWVP Registration. 


Why does Catholic Education in Tasmania require ALL Employees, Volunteers and External Providers to have WWVP Registration - despite possible exemption under the Act?

The Act creates a mandatory minimum standard for those who are performing child-related work in Tasmania. Without undertaking WWVP Registration there is no link between the Department of Justice and the organisation in which a person is employed or engaged. WWVP Registration ensures that the Department of Justice continuously monitors for any alleged breaches (relevant to this registration e.g. violence or sexual misconduct) and can inform all relevant organisations, thus minimising risk of harm to children.


Will Volunteers need to pay for WWVP Registration?

Yes. However, the school at its discretion may pay for the registration on grounds of genuine financial hardship.


How long is WWVP Registration valid for?

Three years unless there is a relevant change in criminal history.


Is WWVP Registration transferable between schools?

WWVP Registration is designed to be transferable between organisations within the same state. WWVP Registration does not screen for all criminal records, they only screen for offences indicating unsuitability for work with children. These offences may vary between states.


Do you need to have an actual card before commencing work or volunteering?

Employees and volunteers in CET should have their WWVP Registration prior to commencement.

Only in exceptional circumstances may engagement commence where an individual can provide a WWVP Application Receipt and a Statutory Declaration.


How long does the WWVP Registration process take?

Results can be expected six weeks from the date the applicant completes the proof of identity requirement.


Will I be reminded when I need to re-apply?

The Department of Justice will send a reminder letter three months before your WWVP Registration expires asking you to reapply. It is up to you to then reapply before your registration expires. We recommend allowing a minimum of six weeks processing time.


I hold a Volunteer Registration and wish to use it for employment.

If you are a volunteer who holds a current WWVP Registration, you can only use your 'volunteer' WWVP registration for volunteer work. If you intend to undertake 'child-related work' for profit or gain, you will need to change your details by completing the online Registration amendment.

Please note: It is an offence not to advise the Registrar of changes to certain details. If you do not comply, you may be subject to criminal penalties.


Do I have to notify the Department of Justice Registrar if I change address?   

If you change your address you will need to change your WWVP Registration details by completing the online Registration amendment form.

Please note: It is an offence not to advise the Registrar of changes to certain details. If you do not comply, you may be subject to criminal penalties.


What are the requirements for External Providers in CET sites?

External Providers who are engaged on CET sites have the same obligations as employees and volunteers.

However, WWVP Registration will not be required for contractors working within the fenced area of a Construction Project if the following is in place:

If a school, or the TCEO on behalf of a Systemic School, engages a construction company as a Principal Contractor (as defined in the Tasmanian WHS Regulations 2012) and the Principal Contractor takes possession of a portion of the school under that construction contract.  This is because for the duration that the Principal Contractor has possession of the site under the Construction project it is no longer property under control of the school or Archdiocese, and the sheer volume of contractors engaging with the project would make administration of the WWVP registration untenable. 


When does WWVP Registration come into effect?

Child Education Services (Non-Government Schools) Registration became MANDATORY on 1 October 2015.

With the exception of Registered Teachers, everyone employed or engaged in CET schools, is required to have WWVP Registration.

People commencing employment or engagement in CET schools, who are not directly employed or engaged in the role of a registered Teacher, after 1 October 2015 must have WWVP Registration before they start work.

WWVP Registration is required for CET Registered Teachers by 1 January 2017.


Why do some teachers need to register under the regulated activity of Child Education Services (non-Government) if they hold current Teacher Registration?

WWVP Registration is role-based so if the person is not employed or engaged in the role of a Registered Teacher then they will need to register according to the role they perform in the regulated activity they are engaged in.

Example – A registered teacher who is working in a school support role such as a Teacher Assistant will need to hold Registration in accordance with the mandatory registration date for Child Education Services (non-Government).


When do Volunteers need WWVP Registration?

Existing volunteers should have provided a WWVP assessment letter for verification by CET before 1 October 2015.

From 1 October 2015, new volunteers will be required to provide an assessment letter for verification by CET prior to an individual starting at the school as a volunteer.


Will my registration still be valid if I change schools?

Applicants only need register once.  Registration is transferrable across all activities unless the Department of Justice Registrar issues a condition on the registration that stipulates otherwise. Applicants will be advised at the time of registration if a condition has been applied to their registration.

Back to top

 

You are here: Home / Employment / Working with Vulnerable People