Safe Ministry Check – Information
Safe Ministry Checks for Volunteers
The Safe Ministry to Children Ordinance 2020 is the document that outlines the Sydney Diocese’ response to the General Synod Safe Ministry to Children Canon 2017.
The part that impacts parishes in the Diocese the most is the Safe Ministry Check for volunteers.
NOTE: The Safe Ministry Check (SMC) that applies to clergy and authorised Lay Ministers is administered by the PSU and the Registry and does not involve the parishes.
The Safe Ministry Assessment for volunteer workers is in effect a type of job application that volunteers who work with children will need to complete before they continue or commence that work. This is in addition to the existing requirements for a current NSW Working With Children Check and current Safe Ministry Training.
The Safe Ministry Check (SMC) form requires a pastoral approach to its administration. Some of the questions asked are of a highly personal nature, and the Ordinance calls on the Senior Minister or his Authorised Delegate to manage the process.
The completed forms should be securely stored by the parish indefinitely.
To assist parishes,the PSU has made an online version of the SMC form available soon which will semi-automate the process – including the collection of a character reference from a previous Senior Minister if required.
The result of the form will be sent to the Senior Minister or his Authorised Delegate and will be easy to store electronically.
Of course, a PDF version of the form will be available for those who cannot or prefer not to use the online form.
The security of the storage of these forms should not be underestimated due to the highly sensitive nature of the contents.
A more detailed guide to assist churches effectively implement the Safe Ministry Assessment and Check is available here.