• CHCCHILD401A - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk

Identify and respond to children and young people at risk

This unit describes the knowledge and skills required to address duty of care requirements, working within an ethical framework and applying relevant legislation, policies and procedures in responding to children and young people


This unit applies to workers involved in delivering services to children and young people including: community services, health, policing, juvenile justice, recreation, family services, education, alcohol and other drugs work and mental health


Not Applicable

Elements and Performance Criteria



1. Implement work practices which support the protection of children and young people

1.1 Identify children and young people at risk of harm by observing signs and symptoms, asking non-invasive questions, being aware of protective issues and using child protection procedures where appropriate

1.2 Respond to disclosure, information or signs and symptoms in accordance with accepted standards, techniques, and legislative obligations

1.3 Comply with lawful instructions, regulations and duty of care in all work activities

1.4 Routinely employ child focused work practices to uphold the rights of children and young peoples to participate in decision-making where it is age appropriate

1.5 Employ communication and information gathering techniques with children and young people in accordance with current recognised good practice

1.6 Ensure decisions and actions taken are within own level of responsibility, work role and legislative requirements

1.7 Maintain own knowledge and skills as required to work effectively and participate in practice supervision processes

1.8 Maintain confidentiality as appropriate

1.9 Provide an appropriate response as determined by organisation procedures, legal and work role obligations

2. Report indications of possible risk of harm

2.1 Accurately record relevant specific and general circumstances surrounding risk of harm in accordance with organisation procedures, ethics and legal requirements

2.2 Promptly report risk of harm indicators accordance with statutory and organisation procedures

2.3 Work collaboratively with relevant agencies to ensure maximum effectiveness of report

3. Apply ethical and nurturing practices in work with children and young people

3.1 Protect the rights of children and young people in the provision of services

3.2 Identify and seek supervision support for issues of ethical concern in practice with children and young people

3.3 Develop ethical and nurturing practices in accordance with professional boundaries when working with children and young people

3.4 Recognise indicators for potential ethical concerns when working with children and young people

3.5 Respond to unethical behaviour of others by reporting to the appropriate person

Required Skills

This describes the essential skills and knowledge and their level required for this unit.

Essential knowledge:

The candidate must be able to demonstrate essential knowledge required to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

These include knowledge of:

Statutory and policy requirements relating to job role

Ethical obligations as stated in relevant codes of practice, licensing, accreditation registration to professional bodies, service agreements

Ethical approaches that incorporate the conventions on the rights of the child, and human rights

Responsibilities to clearly define worker and client roles and responsibilities in regard to ethical conduct and professional relationship boundaries

State/territory requirements and processes for notifying suspected abuse and reporting process

Child protection system: including reporting protocols, responses to reporting, interagency policies

Organisation guidelines and policies for responding to risks of harm to children and young people

Duty of care responsibilities

Ethical obligations as defined by the job specification and employing organisaiton

Principles of ethical decision-making

Recording procedures appropriate to job role

Common risks to child's safety

Indicators of the different types and dynamics of abuse including as they apply to age, gender, disability, culture, sexuality

The different types of abuse: serious psychological, physical, sexual, neglect, domestic violence

Impact of risk of harm

Appropriate responses to disclosure

Overview of legal system and it pertains to the job role

Outline of common legal issues as relevant to work undertaken with children and young people such as:

abuse in all forms

domestic and family violence



alcohol and other drugs (AOD) concerns

systems abuse

Essential skills:

It is critical that the candidate demonstrate the ability to:

Provide an appropriate response to indications of risk of harm

In addition, the candidate must be able to effectively do the task outlined in elements and performance criteria of this unit, manage the task and manage contingencies in the context of the identified work role

These include the ability to:

Apply indicators of abuse to make judgements about risks of harm

Follow procedures and instructions

Apply principles of ethical decision-making

Maintain professional boundaries in work with children and young people

Provide required reports and records, including effective use of relevant information technology in line with occupational health and safety (OHS) guidelines

Use child focused work practices including:

communication skills

awareness and sensitivity to children and young person's needs

inclusiveness of children and young people in participatory decision-making process

making special allowances to met needs of children and young people

ways of engaging children and young people

observance and presence of children and young people as primary clients

Distinguish between legal and ethical problems

Work within a legal and ethical framework

Apply problem solving and negotiation skills to resolve problems of a difficult nature within organisation protocols

Evidence Required

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the Performance Criteria, Required Skills and Knowledge, the Range Statement and the Assessment Guidelines for this Training Package.

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate this unit of competency:

The individual being assessed must provide evidence of specified essential knowledge as well as skills

Assessment may occur both in the workplace and in off-the-job learning contexts through methods that present workplace practice situations, using case studies, simulations etc.

Competence in this unit must be assessed over a period of time in order to ensure consistency of performance across contexts applicable to the work environment

Consistency in performance should consider the work environment, worker's role and responsibilities in the workplace

Access and equity considerations:

All workers in community services should be aware of access, equity and human rights issues in relation to their own area of work

All workers should develop their ability to work in a culturally diverse environment

In recognition of particular issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, workers should be aware of cultural, historical and current issues impacting on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people

Assessors and trainers must take into account relevant access and equity issues, in particular relating to factors impacting on Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander clients and communities

Context of and specific resources for assessment:

This unit can be assessed independently, however holistic assessment practice with other community services units of competency is encouraged

Resources required for assessment include access to an appropriate workplace where assessment can be conducted or simulation of realistic workplace setting for assessment

Method of assessment:

In cases where the learner does not have the opportunity to cover all relevant aspects in the work environment, the remainder should be assessed through realistic simulations, projects, previous relevant experience or oral questioning on 'What if?' scenarios

Assessment of this unit of competence will usually include observation of processes and procedures, oral and/or written questioning on Essential knowledge and skills and consideration of required attitudes

Range Statement

The Range Statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Add any essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts.

Lawful instructions and regulation may include:

Restraining orders

Supervision and custody orders


Lawful instructions may include instructions received from:

Licensing authorities

Organisation supervisor

Courts of Law


Child focused work practices


Policies of organisation

Client self determination

Child protection procedures will be determined and defined by:

The specific job role

Organisation procedures

Interagency agreements

Legislation within jurisdictions

Response will be determined by:

Job role and

will range from reporting to implementing disciplinary action

Accepted standards include:

State coordinating bodies

Interagency agreements and guidelines

Protocols defined in legislation

Organisation procedures

Codes of ethics

Practice standards

Licensing and accreditation standards

The appropriate person to report suspected risk of harm will vary according to the legislation in the State/territory and organisation policies.
The person may be:


State Child Protection Agency

Supervisor in the service

Individual carer

Individual worker


Not Applicable

Employability Skills

This unit contains Employability Skills

Licensing Information

Not Applicable