In response to the Parliamentary Inquiry into abuse in disability services, the Victorian Government agreed to expand the scope of the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme (the scheme) to further protect people with a disability.
Since 1 November 2017, the scheme applies to all disability services (as defined by the Disability Act 2006). This includes all disability service providers who provide services under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) that are registered in Victoria.
There is a staged approach to the implementation of the expanded scheme.
What does this mean for CSOs?
Community Service Organisations who are registered as a disability service provider under the Disability Act, will also be required from 1 November 2017 to notify the DWES Unit of all incidents involving disability workers that meet the DWES criteria. This also applies to service providers providing disability services under the NDIS, which are registered under the Disability Act.
Providers have until 1 December 2017 to ensure they have established processes to check all prospective disability workers against the list. Providers have until 1 February 2018 to check all current disability workers against the List.
The DWES Unit has written to all impacted CSOs about their obligations under the expanded scheme. Emails have been sent to organisations through the Funded Agency Channel, and news alerts have been published on the department’s website and on the Funded Agency Channel. The DWES Unit and Disability and NDIS Branch will also be presenting on the expanded scheme at various information sessions and forums for providers during the next few weeks.
Information sheets for providers and workers are available for download on the department’s website.