Identify and respond to children and young people at risk


This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to support and protect children and young people who are at risk of harm. This work occurs within legislative and policy frameworks and carries a duty of care responsibility.

This unit applies to workers in a range of job roles providing services to children and young people including in community services and health contexts.

The skills in this unit must be applied in accordance with Commonwealth and State/Territory legislation, Australian/New Zealand standards and industry codes of practice.

Elements and Performance Criteria



Elements define the essential outcomes.

Performance criteria specify the level of performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

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

1.1 Identify children and young people at risk of abuse or neglect by observing signs and symptoms, asking open and non-leading 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 state legislative responsibilities and the service policies and procedures

1.3 Routinely employ child-focused work practices to uphold the rights of the child and encourage them to participate in age-appropriate decision-making

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

1.5 Ensure decisions and actions taken are within own level of responsibility, work role, state legislation and service policies and procedures

2. Report indications of possible risk of harm

2.1 Accurately record relevant specific and general circumstances surrounding risk of harm in accordance with state legislation, service policies and procedures and ethics

2.2 Promptly record and report risk-of-harm indicators, including the circumstances surrounding the risk of harm according to service policies and procedures

2.3 Ensure writing in reports is non-judgemental

2.4 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 Employ ethical and nurturing practices and observe professional boundaries when working with children and young people

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

Foundation Skills

The Foundation Skills describe those required skills (language, literacy, numeracy and employment skills) that are essential to performance.

Reading - in order to read and understand forms and to make accurate reports

Writing - in order to record details of children and young people at risk and to make reports using handwritten skills and computer skills

Other foundation skills essential to performance are explicit in the performance criteria of this unit.