Out-of-home care service providers must perform a Disqualified Carer Check prior to employing or engaging residential carers, or approving foster carers and ensure they are registered within 14 days.
The Secretary of the department is required to keep a register of out-of-home carers. This requirement is specified under part 3.4 of the Children Youth and Families Act 2005 (the Act).
The aim is to improve the safety and wellbeing of Victorian children and young people in out-of-home care through the registration of persons approved, employed or engaged as out-of-home carers.
Which carer roles need to be registered
- Foster carers – including any other staff who are engaged or employed to provide care to a child in a foster care placement
- Residential carers – all staff including permanent, part-time, casual and temporary agency staff
- Providers of services to children at an out-of-home care residential facility (for example, a tutor) who are engaged or employed by the out-of home care service that manages the residence.
The Act's registration requirements
Organisations and other registered out-of-home care services must:
- Undertake a disqualified carer check on all prospective out-of-home carers prior to:
- Approving the person as a foster carer, or
- Employing or engaging a person as a residential carer, or
- Employing or engaging a person as a provider of services to children in the residential facility (section 120)
- Register a carer in the Carer Register within 14 days of being approved as foster carer, employed or engaged as residential carer or provider of services (section 78)
- Revoke a carer's registration in the Carer Register within 14 days of ceasing to be a carer (section 79).
Failure to undertake a disqualified carer check may result in the organisation or registered out-of-home care service being penalised under the provisions of section 120 of the Act.
Note: Organisations and other registered out-of-home care services are reviewed by the department to ensure that legislative requirements are being met.
What is the Carer Register?
The Carer Register is a web based application used by organisations and out-of-home care services to undertake disqualified carer checks and to register carers.
The department provides organisations and other registered out-of-home care services with access to the Carer Register, and supports the use of the Carer Register by providing training and help-desk support.
Access to register
For information about getting access to the Carer Register, disqualified carer checks or registering carers call the Carer Register Team.
For assistance with your Carer Register log-in, issues with accessing the Carer Register or other related technical issues contact the Carer Register Helpdesk.
For Safety screening for funded agencies, visit Safety screening for funded organisations on the Service agreement information kit website.