LCA Child Safety Standards for Congregations
The LCA Child Safety Standards (CSS) for Congregations are designed to help congregations maximise the safety of children and young people.
It is also envisaged that they will help the church to meet its regulatory responsibilities in response to an increasingly rigorous child safety landscape in Australia and New Zealand. This is especially so in the wake of the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.
The draft Standards have been developed by the LCANZ’s Child Protection Project Team over the past 12 months. They were considered by the General Church Board during 2020 and approved for consultation (prior to COVID-19 travel restrictions).
LCA Safe Church Webinar 27 March 2021
including segment on LCA Child Safety Standards for Congregations
PART 1: LCA Child Safety Standards for Congregations
The LCA Child Safety Standards for Congregations (CSS) have been developed as a mechanism for implementing the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations which are soon to become mandatory in all Australian jurisdictions. The LCA CSS are derived directly from the National Principles and are heavily reflective of them in content and aspiration. They are straightforward and tailored to the faith-based context. Accountability and responsibility for implementation of the LCA CSS will sit with local church councils. It is anticipated that the LCA CSS will be implemented in all LCA congregations from January 2022. This section provides background and context to the introduction of the Standards, followed by an overview of the Standards, including their descriptors and indicators.
PART 2: CSS Self-Assessment Tool
The LCA Child Safety Standards (CSS) will be implemented using two methodologies:
- A Self-Assessment Tool and
- A congregational Child Safety Plan
This section provides an overview of the Self-Assessment Tool including instructions for its application and some examples.
PART 3: CSS Child Safety Plan
Development and oversight of the Child Safety Plan will be an important new role for Church Council members. This section provides an overview of the Child Safety Plan, including instructions for its development and completion as well as a few more examples of assessments and suggested strategies.
PART 4: CSS Governance and Reporting Framework
Implementation of the LCA Child Safety Standards (CSS) for Congregations will provide the LCA with critical data regarding compliance with the National Principles and the various regulatory requirements in each of our jurisdictions. It will also assist the LCA on both a Churchwide and District level with the identification of trends, priorities, deficits and strengths. This is very important given the church’s commitment to child safety improvement and progress.