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What are Working With Children Checks?

min read
A Working with Children Check is a background check for people who want to work with children

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Vulnerable groups in society require extra protection and children are one such group. Not everyone  may be allowed to work with children which is why, in Australia, a Working With Children check exists. 

If you’re hiring for a role that requires interaction with children, then it may be required to conduct a Working with Children Check. As an employer, it’s your responsibility to verify the candidate’s eligibility to work with children before hiring them.

What is a Working with Children Check? ‍

A Working with Children Check is an Australian background check on people who want to engage in child-related work including volunteer activities. It involves a screening process that looks at any spent convictions, pending and non-conviction charges and other disciplinary records., 

A Working with Children Check may be mandatory in some cases and the outcome may determine whether a candidate can be hired for the roleDepending on the state or territory, A Working with Children Check can have different names. In Queensland it's called a Blue Card and in the Northern Territory, a Working with Children Clearance.  

Why are Working with Children checks important? ‍

A Working with Children Check protects children by screening people who are going to engage in child-related work. The check aims to prevent people who are an unacceptable risk from working with children.

How to conduct a Working with Children Check?‍

The state or territory you live in will have a system that conducts working with children checks. You can require candidates to obtain their own Working with Children Check (this is more likely with volunteer-work) or conduct it on their behalf. In order to conduct a check, you must have access to government or third-party portals that are connected to Working with Children check systems. Reference checking software like Xref integrates with Working with Children Check systems so employers can conduct all reference and verification checks in one place. This makes it easier to ensure every candidate is properly screened with all the requirements needed to fill a position. It also saves recruiters time and resources.

How is a Working with Children check different to a criminal record check? ‍

A Working with Children Check assesses criminal history as part of its screening process. But it also looks at other information like child protection information. Someone with a criminal record may still be eligible to work with children depending on the offence. 

Do I need to ask for candidate permission before conducting a Working with Children check?‍

Consent and privacy laws vary between each country and state. In many cases, candidate consent is required.

Plus, every country has different laws in terms of compulsory checks depending on the profession or role. 

Check which laws apply to you and be sure to follow them..

What other verification checks should I conduct? ‍

Along with an employment verification check you may choose, or be required by law to conduct:

Where can I learn more about Working with Children Checks?

Get in touch with our team to learn more about how you can conduct a Working with Children check in an easy and compliant way.

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