Why do we have a Reportable Conduct Scheme? 

Why do we need a Reportable Conduct Scheme?

The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse highlighted the numerous times and ways in which children reported abuse and were not believed, or no action was taken. The Royal Commission recommended that States and Territories establish Reportable Conduct Schemes to prevent harm to children by holding organisations accountable for the conduct of their staff.

The Reportable Conduct Scheme supports people to speak up about concerning behaviours, helps prevent child abuse and improve systems and processes of organisations for preventing and dealing with complaints and reports of abuse about their staff.

Why is it necessary to require investigation and action by the head of the organisation in response to reports of child abuse about their staff?

The Reportable Conduct Scheme compels heads of organisations that exercise care, supervision or authority over children to notify allegations of, or convictions for, child abuse by their employees to the Ombudsman and then investigate these allegations.

The requirement for the head of the organisation to undertake an investigation and take appropriate action, which is subject to monitoring by the Ombudsman, is intended to protect children by ensuring their complaints are not dismissed, minimised, ignored or mishandled and, where appropriate, action is taken to prevent further reportable conduct.

It will further reinforce the responsibility that institutions must take to ensure the safety of children.