Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme

The Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme is a Victorian Government initiative designed to further protect the safety and wellbeing of Victorians with disability who access disability services.

How does the scheme apply to disability service providers?

The scheme operates in accordance with the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme (DWES) Instruction, June 2020 (see ‘Related resources’). The DWES Instruction outlines the authority for the scheme and describes the obligations of disability service providers in relation to pre-employment screening and notifications.

How does the scheme apply to registered NDIS providers?

From 1 February 2021, National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) worker screening started in Victoria and other states and territories. From 1 February 2021, Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme (DWES) checking and notification requirements will not apply to registered NDIS providers.

Registered NDIS providers must continue to make notifications as outlined in the Safety Screening Policy for registered NDIS providers operating in Victoria about incidents occurring prior to 1 February 2021. The DWES Unit will process and undertake assessments of all notifications received and finalise these notifications as soon as possible. 

All disability service providers and registered NDIS providers, regardless of funding source, are required to report any ‘notifiable conduct’ to the Victorian Disability Worker Commission.

For more information on the NDIS worker screening check, see the Victorian NDIS check website.

For more information about NDIS worker screening, see the NDIS Commission website.

How does the scheme apply to providers that are both registered disability service providers and registered NDIS providers? 

Where a provider is a registered disability service provider and a registered NDIS provider, NDIS worker screening will apply. If the provider is providing services to a state funded client, department incident reporting (including notifications to DWES) will apply in relation to the state funded client.

In relation to the scheme’s notification requirements, refer to the document Reporting requirements for worker screening and incident reporting for dual registered providers (see ‘Related resources’).

The DWES Portal

Access to the DWES portal is limited to authorised persons nominated by each service provider. All existing authorised persons will continue to be authorised unless a disability service provider or authorised labour hire agency advises the DWES Unit that an authorised person should be removed.

To appoint a new authorised person, complete the Authorised Person Nomination form (see ‘Related resources’) and email it to the DWES unit: DWESU@dhhs.vic.gov.au.

Access the DWES Portal 

The DWES portal allows organisations to:

  • Log in and lodge checks and notifications
  • View results
  • Track the status of matters.

Instructions for using the DWES Portal are available in the user guide for service providers (see ‘Related resources’).

  • Information for workers

    Who does the scheme apply to?

    Workers engaged by registered disability service providers

    The scheme applies to all disability workers engaged by a disability service provider in the following ways:

    • Full-time, part-time or casual employees
    • Contractors
    • Persons engaged through labour hire agencies
    • Students on placements
    • Volunteers.

    Under the scheme, a Disability Worker means a person engaged by a disability provider who:

    • Provides, or supervises or manages a person who provides direct support to a person with a disability
    • Has direct contact or access to a person with a disability.

    For more information on the DWES, see the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme information sheet for disability workers (word).

    What is the Disability Worker Exclusion List?

    The Disability Worker Exclusion List is a list of people who have been assessed by the department as being unsuitable to be engaged:

    • As a Disability Worker or in work that involves regular direct contact with, or access to, a person with a disability.

    Can you review a decision?

    A person can apply for a review of a decision to place them on the list by completing a Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme worker review form (word).

  • Information for service providers

    Who does the scheme apply to?

    Registered Disability Service providers

    The Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme applies to all disability services. Disability services are services provided by a disability service provider specifically for the support of people with a disability.

    Disability service provider is defined as:

    1. The Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (department); or
    2. A person or body registered on the register of disability service providers.

    The obligations and requirements of disability service providers registered under the Disability Act are contained in the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme Instruction – June 2020.

    For more information on the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme, see the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme information sheet for disability service providers (word).

    What is the Disability Worker Exclusion List?

    People applying for jobs with disability service providers should be informed that they will be checked against the Disability Worker Exclusion List before they can be engaged as a Disability Worker in a disability service.

    People who are found to be unsuitable are placed on the Disability Worker Exclusion List and are not allowed to be engaged by a:

    • Disability service provider as a Disability Worker, or in work that involves regular direct contact with, or access to, a person with a disability.

    Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme consent and acknowledgement form

    A Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme consent and acknowledgement form must be provided by the service provider to the prospective worker. This must be completed and signed by the prospective worker prior to a check of the Disability Worker Exclusion List being conducted.

    Labour hire staff

    Disability service providers are required to comply with the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme Instruction when engaging staff through a labour hire agency.

    The organisations listed below have entered into an agreement with the department to comply with the requirements of the scheme. That is, authorised labour hire agencies have agreed that all of their workers have undertaken DWES checks and other safety requirements.

    It is important to note the status of a labour hire agency as an ‘authorised‘ labour hire agency is not indicative of whether the agency is a registered service provider or compliant with the Human Services Standards or other department policies. It merely indicates that these organisations have entered into an agreement with the department to comply with the requirements of the Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme.

    • Ablecare Staffing
    • Anzuk Education
    • Austra Health
    • Belmore Nurses
    • Care Choice
    • Care Talent
    • Caring For You Nursing Agency
    • Crewe Sharp Medical
    • Drake Medox
    • Edmen Community Staffing Solutions
    • Essential Personnel Services
    • Firstcall Health
    • H1 Healthcare
    • Healthcare Australia (HCA)
    • HenderCare
    • Integrated Support Personnel
    • Interchange Outer East
    • Kemp Recruitment
    • KLC Recruitment
    • McArthur Pty Ltd
    • Omega Support Group
    • ONCALL Personnel and Management Services
    • Programmed Health Professionals
    • St Mary’s Health Services
    • Transitions Community Care Solutions
    • Tradewind
    • Victorian Nurse Specialists (VNS Nursing Agency).

    What happens if a non-authorised labour hire agency is used?

    The department does not endorse the use of ‘authorised’ labour hire agencies over other labour hire agencies. If a ‘non-authorised’ labour hire agency is used, service providers must conduct their own checks against the Disability Worker Exclusion List before engaging a worker from that agency.

    Further resources

    The following documents are provided to assist you with meeting the requirements of the scheme:

Contacts
Disability Worker Exclusion Scheme Unit
03 9096 3203
dwesu@dhhs.vic.gov.au

For all enquiries relating to the scheme, checks and notifications.

DWES Portal
03 9096 3200
DWESsalesforcesupport@dhhs.vic.gov.au

For all enquiries relating to the DWES Portal, access, troubleshooting.