NDIS Worker Screening Checks
Do You Provide NDIS Worker Screening Checks?
The NDIS Worker Screening Check is a national screening system founded to assess the safety of individuals working with people who have a disability. It is now in operation across all Australian states and territories, with arrangements set to begin in the Northern Territory in July 2021.
The NDIS Worker Check is a critical tool which helps to ensure the safety of the most vulnerable people in our community. Dedicated screening ensures the safety of the person living with disability, as well as the worker taking care of them.
Do You Provide NDIS Worker Screening Checks?
No, Crime Check Australia does not provide NDIS Worker Screening Checks. There are many authorised providers of NDIS Worker Screening Checks which can be found on the NDIS Commission website.
Who Provides NDIS Worker Screening Checks?
NDIS Worker Screening Checks are provided by agencies in all states and territories. Visit the NDIS Commission website for further details of where to get worker screening clearance. The NDIS checks are now available in all states:
- Western Australia
- New South Wales
- South Australia
What Does NDIS Stand For?
NDIS stands for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, which is implemented by the National Disability Insurance Agency or NDIA. The scheme supports a better quality of life for Australian citizens with a permanent disability, as well as their families and carers.
What is the NDIS Commission?
The NDIS Commission, also known as the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission, is an independent body which operates in all Australian states and territories.
It was founded to support and improve the safety and quality of NDIS services.The body works with all people associated with NDIS, including workers, volunteers, service providers and people in the community. The aim is to provide a national support system for all NDIS participants to access the services available.
What is the NDIS Worker Screening Check?
The NDIS Worker Screening Check is the assessment of an individual who works with, or seeks to work with, people living with disabilities. The assessment is in place to determine whether the individual poses a risk to those with a disability. Once the assessment is complete, it will be determined whether the applicant is cleared for work or denied employment to work in certain roles involving people with a disability.
What is the Difference Between National Police Checks and NDIS Worker Screening Checks?
National police checks are different from NDIS Worker Screening Checks.
A National Police Check (NPC), also known as a Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check (NCCHC), is an official document containing the police history of an individual. The police check in the form of a national police certificate will reveal any disclosable court outcomes and pending charges.
A National Police Check is performed by a criminal background check which searches police databases across all states and territories in Australia. These checks are usually obtained for purposes of employment, but also include voluntary work, registry and licensing purposes, visas and citizenship.
The NDIS Worker Screening Check is an assessment of an individual to determine whether they can work with people who have disabilities for safety reasons. The assessment will decide if the individual is cleared or excluded from such roles. There is a greater risk assessment for NDIS checks than national police checks as more risk factors must be considered.
How Do I Apply for the NDIS Worker Screening Check?
The NDIS Worker Screening Check can be applied for by any person working, or looking to work with people with a disability. You can apply for the check through the relevant state or territory agency. This applies to registered NDIS providers, unregistered NDIS providers and self-employed participants.
Every agency has a system called a worker screening unit. This unit holds responsibility for accepting applications for NDIS Worker Screening Checks and for processing them. The screening will involve risk assessments to decide if a worker is suitable to work with vulnerable people.
As agencies are available across all states and territories, the application fees will differ when applying for the screening check. You can find further information regarding fees and other queries by visiting the worker screening unit website for the state or territory you need. A list of these pages can be found on the website of the NDIS Commission.
What is the Application Process?
An NDIS Worker Screening Check can be applied for through the relevant state or territory screening unit.
The application process is as follows:
- Submission of the applicant’s contact and personal information to the NDIS Worker screening unit along with the application form
- Provide ID documentation to verify identity. This process may vary between states and territories
- The applicant pays a fee for the clearance check. Fees payable may vary between states and territories
- Provide information in regards to the NDIS provider or self-managed participant who recruits the applicant for NDIS services
- The NDIS provider or self-managed participant must verify that the applicant intends to work for NDIS support and services (the process will only progress once the application is verified)
What is the NDIS Worker Screening Database?
For the NDIS Worker Screening Check, a database is used called the NDIS Worker Screening Database. This is operated by the NDIS Commission who is responsible for all aspects of the database, which enables the sharing of clearance information on a national level. All applicants who have applied for the NDIS check are put into the database.
To view the information held on the database, all NDIS providers and participants must apply to the NDIS Commission and request access. NDIS providers who are registered can now access the database using the NDIS Commission Portal online.
The database is used and maintained for the following:
- A register containing all cleared and excluded workers from all states and territories in Australia
- Provides support to the national ongoing monitoring of worker conduct with clearances
- Allows NDIS providers to check clearances of prospective workers, without having to contact the worker screening units of each individual state and territory
- Supports NDIS providers with following the requirements of keeping records
Which Roles Require the NDIS Worker Screening Check?
The roles which require the NDIS Worker Screening Check are established by registered NDIS providers who are responsible for the process. They determine the roles that need a risk assessment, and it is their responsibility to make sure that all workers in these roles have police clearance from the NDIS Worker Screening Check.
What is a Risk Assessed Role?
The NDIS Commision website states a risk assessed role as the following:
- A key personnel role of a person or an entity as defined in s 11A of the National Disability Insurance Scheme Act 2013
- A role involving the direct delivery of specified supports or services to a person with a disability
- A role which is likely to require ‘more than incidental contact’ with people with a disability.
A role which is likely to require ‘more than incidental contact’ includes the following:
- Physically touching a person with disability
- Building a rapport with a person with disability as an integral and ordinary part of the performance of normal duties
- Contact with multiple people with disability as part of the direct delivery of a specialist disability support or service, or in a specialist disability accommodation setting
What Normal Duties Require More Than Incidental Contact?
A role consisting of duties which require more than incidental contact within normal duties as specified by the NDIS Commission includes any physical contact, face to face contact, oral and written communication, and digital communication.
What is Worker Screening?
Worker screening is a process which checks if an individual is safe to work with people with a disability, and that they do not pose any risks. The screening is very important for the safety of people with disabilities, and supports the recruitment process for NDIS providers. It acts as an ongoing review of worker eligibility.
Do I Require the NDIS Worker Screening Check?
You must have the NDIS Worker Screening Check to receive clearance for any risk assessed role for a registered provider.
Your employer, or potential employer, has responsibility for assessing whether your job role is a risk assessed role. If the position is not a risk assessed role, your employer can still request you to have a worker screening check. However, this is not mandatory for non risk assessed roles.
How Long is NDIS Clearance Valid?
The NDIS clearance check is valid for the duration of 5 years. As the check is national, workers are able to go between jobs as well as different states and territories without needing another screening, provided the clearance has not expired.
What is the NDIS Code of Conduct?
The NDIS Code of Conduct is a set of rules in place to support a safe and ethical service. The code applies to both NDIS providers and workers. Those who receive clearance from the worker screening check must abide by the Code of Conduct.
The NDIS Code of Conduct sets out the following obligations for all NDIS workers:
- To act with respect for individual rights to freedom of expression, self-determination, and decision-making in accordance with relevant laws and conventions
- Respect the privacy of people with disability
- Provide supports and services in a safe and competent manner with care and skill
- Act with integrity, honesty, and transparency
- Promptly take steps to raise and act on concerns about matters that might have an impact on the quality and safety of supports provided to people with disability
- Take all reasonable steps to prevent and respond to all forms of violence, exploitation, neglect, and abuse
- Take all reasonable steps to prevent sexual misconduct
What is An Acceptable Check?
An acceptable check allows an individual to begin work within certain roles without having an NDIS clearance check. The worker can apply for an acceptable check if they do not currently have an official NDIS worker screening check.
However, this is only temporary. An acceptable check will only remain valid under special circumstances. National police checks are sometimes considered to be an acceptable check, but it is important to check with the relevant bodies and to follow the requirements of the state and territory you are working in.