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Home Other Checks and Registrations Working with Children Checks in Australia

Working with Children Checks in Australia

A Working with Children Check is an assessment of whether a person poses an unacceptable risk to children in Australia. As part of the process the screening unit will look at criminal history, child protection information and other information.

If you are applying for any role that requires proximity, or in-person service to children in Australia; you must undergo a Working with Children Check. This assessment will affect pre-employment decisions and determine if you can be employed or not. Hence it is popularly referred to as WWCC or WWC in many Australian states and territories.

The equivalent to the Working with Children Check in Queensland is known as a "Blue Card”.

In the Australian Capital Territory, the equivalent is known as the Working with Vulnerable People registration.

The Working With Children Check (WWCC) is legislated by each state and territory for the purpose of conducting background checks for people seeking to engage in child-related work.

The check aims to prevent people from working or volunteering with children if records indicate that they may pose an unacceptable risk to children.

Page Contents

The difference between the Working with Children Check and a Police Check

The Working with Children Check and a National Police Check are two different checks.

The Working with Children Check is an ongoing assessment of a person's eligibility to work or volunteer with children and involves a check of a person's national criminal history (including all spent convictions, pending and non-conviction charges) and other disciplinary and police information.

A national police check is a point in time check and discloses criminal history in accordance with the spent convictions scheme.

What does my Working with Children Check show me?

The working with children check (WWCC) shows the ongoing assessment of a person's eligibility to work, or volunteer with children.

Quite distinct from the National Police Certificates, the WWCC also includes the Spent convictions, pending and non-conviction charges and other disciplinary records. Children are considered as vulnerable members of society and need to be protected with all possible means. The screening process for persons that work closely with children has units that peruse the criminal history, child protection information, and others.

A Working with Children Check will help the employers/organisations in “Child Care” make the right decisions during recruitments.

Which legislation guides the Working with Children Check?

A Working with Children Check certificate is not transferable from state to state. The WWCC has individual legislation across all states. Also, most states even have different popular names for the check.

Is the Working with Children Check transferable between states?

Due to the peculiar requirements of the working with Children Check or working with vulnerable people check, it is not transferable between states.

Irrespective of whether you have applied previously for a WWCC in another state, you must reapply if you must work in a different state/territory.

Do I need a Working with Children Check?

Any individual who seeks a role in the following capacity in any organisation requires a WWCC check;

Various other roles will require you to obtain a Work with Children Check. Also, an employer must ensure that every employee or person they employ presents their WWCC.

How to apply for a Working with Children Check

Since all states have varying legislations about the Work with Children Check, it means the application process might differ slightly. However here are the basic procedures you need to fulfil to complete your application process;

In most cases, in-person verification is necessary; you will require a range of IDs including a primary document showing your full name, date of birth and photo.

Where to obtain a Working with Childrens Check

Applicants wishing to apply for a working with children check must do so through an authorised government screening unit through their state or territory.

The table below shows authorised government screening units that are responsible for working with children registrations in each Australian state and territory:

State or TerritoryName of the CheckLink to Government Screening UnitYear of CommencementYear of Commence- ment
New South WalesWorking with Children CheckNSW Office of the Children's Guardian2000
QueenslandBlue Card Check / Working with Children CheckBlue Card Services2001
VictoriaWorking with Children CheckDepartment of Justice and Regulation, Working with Children Check Unit2006
South AustraliaDCSI Screening / Working with Children CheckDCSI Screening Unit (Department for Communities and Social Inclusion)2011
Australian Capital TerritoryWorking With Vulnerable People (WWVP) checkBackground Screening Unit, Access Canberra2012
TasmaniaRegistration to Work with Vulnerable People (RWVP) / Working with Children RegistrationDepartment of Justice2014
Western AustraliaWorking With Children CheckWWC Screening Unit (Department for Child Protection and Family Support)2005
Northern TerritoryWorking with Children Clearance / Ochre CardScreening Assessment for Employment – Northern Territory (SAFE NT)2010