Frequently Asked Questions
1.What does it mean to be cleared for Safe Ministry?
The Anglican Church is committed to doing everything it can to ensure that its churches are safe places for everyone who participates in church activities — including our visitors and volunteers. Being cleared for Safe Ministry means that you have undergone background screening checks, that you have attended training and that you have agreed to meet specific standards of personal conduct.
2. What is a Safe Ministry clearance application form?
A Safe Ministry clearance application form is an online form that replaces the old ‘Category One’ and ‘Category Two’ forms. Unlike the previous ‘Category One’ and ‘Category Two’ forms, the new Safe Ministry clearance application forms DO NOT need to be signed by a JP.
3. Which Safe Ministry clearance application form am I required to submit?
There are three categories of Safe Ministry clearance application; BLUE, ORANGE & GREEN.
The BLUE Safe Ministry clearance application form is to be completed by all clergy, anyone licenced or authorised by the bishop, and all paid ministry workers.
The ORANGE Safe Ministry clearance application form is to be completed by all Adult Church Workers including wardens, parish councillors (or equivalent), and treasurers, and all other church volunteers.
The GREEN Safe Ministry clearance application form is to be completed by volunteers from ages 14 to 17 who have non-incidental contact with children.
4. What is the Working with Children Check (WWCC)?
From 1 July 2019, people working or volunteering with children in South Australia must, by law, have a valid child-related clearance, called a Working with Children Check (WWCC).
5. Who needs to complete a Working with Children Check?
All clergy, anyone licenced or authorised by the bishop, paid ministry workers, adult volunteers who have leadership roles in their current church (this includes wardens, parish councillors (or equivalent), treasurers), volunteers aged from 14 to 17 who have non-incidental contact with children, and anyone else who has non-incidental contact with children.
6. What if I already hold a DHS/DCSI child-related employment screening clearance?
Under the new law, if you have a current, valid DHS/DCSI child-related employment screening, you will be able to rely on it until it expires. You can apply for a Working with Children Check up to six months before your currentDHS/DCSI child-related employment screening expires. The expiry date is three years from the date the clearance was issued.
7. What if I have a current Teachers Registration?
Teachers will be notified by the Department of Education to remind them to obtain a Working With Children Check (WWCC) before their current teacher registration expires. There will be a transition period which will roll over a three year period (e.g. January 2020, January 2021 and January 2022). You can find more information about this on the Department of Human Services Screening Unit information page under 'Education services' at https://screening.sa.gov.au/types-of-check/new-working-with-children-checks.
8. What if I already hold a National Police Certificate?
The Government’s transitional provisions mean that those who work with children as well as all clergy, anyone licenced or authorised by the bishop, paid ministry workers, wardens, parish councillors (or equivalent), and treasurers who currently hold a National Police Certificate have until 1 July 2020 to complete a Working with Children Check.
9. What if I have a Working with Children Check from another organisation?
A Working with Children Check is valid for five years and is portable across roles and organisations in South Australia. So, if you have already done a Working with Children Check for another organisation within the last 5 years, you would not need to do another one for your role in Church. However, the church is legally required to contact the WWCC unit to verify that your WWCC is current.
10. What if I’m a volunteer who isn’t required to complete a Working with Children Check?
All adult volunteers who do not meet the criteria to complete a Working with Children Check will have to complete a Safe Ministry clearance application form, along with a SAPOL National Police History Check.
11. How will I know when I am Safe Ministry “compliant”?
You will receive email updates from the Safe Ministry Unit at each stage of the process to help you track the progress of your application. Training is the final stage of the Safe Ministry approval process. Once you have completed the training, you will receive a letter of compliance, telling you that your Safe Ministry Clearance has been approved. This will be emailed to you and to your parish. It will also advise you of your Safe Ministry clearance expiry date.
12. What if I don’t comply with the requirements?
It is an offence to work or volunteer in a child related role without a valid WWCC. The offence carries fines of up to $20,000 and/or a prison sentence.
13. I don’t have access to Safe Ministry training event listings.
Details of training events will be made available to you once the Safe Ministry screening part of the process has been completed.
14. What if I can’t find suitable training events?
If you cannot find any suitable training events to complete your Safe Ministry compliance requirements within the specified time frame, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
15. I don’t have access to a computer/internet…
In this instance, you are advised to seek assistance from someone in your church community who does have access to the appropriate technology and who can help you complete the appropriate forms.
16. What if I don’t have an email address?
If you don’t have your own email address you will need to create a new one, that can be done here - https://www.google.com/intl/en-GB/gmail/about/
Alternatively, if you are not able to establish a new email account, please seek assistance from your Safe Ministry coordinator or Parish Priest.