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Child safety a priority

Child safety a priority

By Belinda Wilson

Child Welfare Continuing Legal Education 


Local sporting bodies need education programs. Australians love their sport. It’s part of the social fabric of our nation and helps to bring people together across our suburbs and regional areas. This month many of us will be watching the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games as more than 6600 athletes and team officials from 70 Commonwealth nations and territories come together for the sporting and cultural celebration. Many of the talented sportsmen and women competing for Australia would have started training for their chosen sports at a young age and risen through the ranks of junior sports clubs. The development and nurturing of our young sports stars through suburban and regional sporting clubs is incredibly important. Every day across Victoria, devoted mums and dads, grandparents, relatives and friends are taking children to sports centres and helping with training and assisting around the clubrooms – helping our clubs and young athletes to succeed. In the LIV’s preliminary Victorian state budget submission, we have suggested that the government invests more funding into education programs for sporting organisations relating to child protection laws. The Victorian Child Safe Standards and changes to the Working with Children Act 2005 have come into effect and apply to sporting organisations in Victoria. We believe there is a lack of resources dedicated to educating sporting bodies about the new laws, particularly at the local level. The LIV would like to see education programs developed to ensure compliance with child safety protection laws and assist sporting organisations and parents. Another state budget request with an education focus is our desire for a Lawyers in Schools program. Young people can be vulnerable to having their education disrupted by legal issues. Lawyers in Schools programs improve legal awareness and facilitate access to legal services for young people – and will assist with the development of children who are disadvantaged. The LIV is also keen to see more funding and education directed to assist culture support planning for Aboriginal children in out-of-home care to encourage the child’s connection to their community and their culture. We’re hopeful that the Victorian government will recognise these important areas in the May budget. Belinda Wilson, LIV president Email: president@liv.asn.au Twitter: @livpresident  Blog: www.liv.asn.au/Staying-Informed/Presidents-Blog

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