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L.I.S.A Inc
 
LISA... is a parent support and lobby group, for parents and families with a family member having an intellectual or multiple disability, and living in a supported accommodation group home in the State of Victoria, Australia.
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Department of Human Services, Victoria

Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme (DWES)

Aim

  • Protect people with a disability from abuse
  • Exclude from employment unsuitable workers

Application

  • Disability residential services' workers who pose a risk to safety/  well-being of
    residents.
  • Following evaluation, consideration will be given to extension to  other disability
    services, such as day services.

 Context

  • Part of program of work to develop a more comprehensive and integrated approach to safeguarding vulnerable people accessing  human services.

DWES‑ Overview
 

  • Will operate within existing legislative framework‑ Disability Act 2006, Occupational Health & Safety Act 2004

  • Amendments to departmental service agreements, policy frameworks and instructions.

  • Workers may be placed on exclusion list following completion of investigation or industrial processes ‑which have led to termination.

  • Workers who resign prior to completion of an investigation may be included
    in scheme.

  • Workers will be placed on provisional list during investigation process (where a person has been stood down or removed from direct client support).
     


Disability Worker Exclusion List (DWEL)

Draft Criteria‑ 19/8/14

The proposed criteria for the DWEL are broad and will include some discretionary capacity. The proposed criteria are:
 

  • where a person has been found guilty of any criminal offence, regardless of whether they are imprisoned, which:
    involves bodily harm.
    involves violence or threats of violence
    is of a sexual nature.
    involves dishonesty, or
    involves neglect of a person in their care.

     
  • where a person's employment has previously been terminated for conduct which includes abusing a client, sexual misconduct with a client or otherwise placing a client at risk of serious harm, including where such conduct occurred in an area outside disability services, for example in a school or a nursing home, regardless of whether there was a criminal prosecution.
     
  • where a person has been the subject of a workplace investigation because of an allegation relating to conduct failing within first two dot points above, but has resigned before that investigation has been concluded, or
     
  • where there are reasonable grounds to consider that the engagement of the person in a direct support role would represent a risk to the health, safety or welfare of a client, which may include circumstances such as where a person has been found of an offence which does not fall within the first dot point
     
  • Fourth dot point ‑still under consideration

A person only needs to fall within one of the above criteria to be considered for placement

on the list.

*Not all workers who meet the criteria will be placed on the list

4

DWES Unit

  • The DWES will be managed through the establishment of a central DWES Unit in the People & Culture Branch of the department.
  • The functions of the DWES Unit will include:

    - management of all referrals
    - assessing and determining placement of workers on the exclusion list
    - administering reviews of a decision to include a person on the exclusion list
    - supporting the implementation and operation of the scheme, and
    - establishing and managing the information system for the scheme.

     
  • A person can make a submission to the Director of the DWES Unit about the decision to place a person on the exclusion list (within 30 days‑ timeline is under consideration ) The final decision of the Director of the DWES Unit is reviewable by a Deputy Secretary from another area of the department. In addition, the unit will have a role in capacity building with disability service providers to strengthen pre‑employment & investigation processes.

5

Before 29 September ‑ Draft

  • Policy instruction will be released
  • Letter to community sector organisations:

* To advise of change's to service agreement information kit

, Initial advice regarding compiling the exclusion list

        -notify of all terminations for past two years for criminal

         convictions (within DWES criteria) organisation wants to provide.

        -other notifications can be provided if organisation‑ for provision of

To request "authorisations" for the organisation- for provision of

confidential information.
 

  • Resource kit will be released‑ provides information including:

• Suggested wording regarding job applications

• Employment contract

*  Future deeds of release
 

  • Labour hire firms,

                 Working through issues

                 Will be released as addendum to policy instruction

  • Establishment of DWES Unit, operations & processes etc

6

From 29 September

Four points of contact with DWES Unit:

  1.  Pre‑employment check of applicants against DWES exclusion list prior to
     employment:

    - applicants who are being considered for positions.

2.Notification during pre‑employment screening

  • Pre‑employment screening discloses previous termination/conviction.

3.Notification of investigation

  • A person has been stood down 1 suspended / no direct client contact
  • Formal investigation commenced
  • Within 5 working days of the delegate being made aware of the investigation (Draft‑ to be confirmed)

4.0utcorne of investigation

LISA Inc   ~   Phone: 03 9434 3810   ~   Email: vk3qq@optusnet.com.au   ~   Address: 73 Nepean Street Watsonia VIC 3087

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