Dr Susan Nicolson

Biography

Dr Susan Nicolson has worked in child protection, out-of-home care and juvenile justice for 30 years. She held senior roles at NSW Office of the Children’s Guardian, Department of Family and Community Services and Office of the NSW Ombudsman. She joined the Australian Human Rights Commission as Director Children’s Rights in 2012. In 2017, she worked as a principal adviser on the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the NT.

Abstract

The Child Safe Journey: The Role of Organisations and Families in Upholding Children’s Rights (Oral Paper Presentation)

This paper focuses on human rights and, in particular, children’s rights, and the important role that they play in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of children and young people.

It specifically looks at the National Principles for Child Safe Organisations, a project led by the Australian Human Rights Commission, which emerged from the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

While the National Principles are based on the Royal Commission’s 10 child safe standards, they are broadened to cover all forms of potential harm, using a child rights, strengths-based approach.

The National Principles will drive the implementation of a child safe culture across all sectors providing services to children, and promote the safety and wellbeing of children across Australia.

They are relevant to organisations of all different sizes and across all types. They apply to all organisations that have a duty of care to children and young people – from volunteer playgroups and local sporting clubs to recreational, educational and faith-based services.

Supporting the implementation of the National Principles are a number of on-line tools and resources, which will be included in the discussion.

Embedding child safe cultures in organisations requires vision, leadership, and active promotion of the rights of children.

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