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 as part of a Safe Ministry Assessment.

NOTE: The Safe Ministry Check (SMC) that applies to clergy and authorised Lay Ministers is administered by the Office of the Director of Safe Ministry (ODSM) and the Registry and does not involve the parishes.

What is the Safe Ministry Assessment?  The Safe Ministry Assessment for volunteer workers is in effect one component of a 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) forms part of the Safe Ministry Assessment and 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.

How to complete the Safe Ministry Check. To assist parishes, the ODSM has made an online version of the SMC form 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 is also available for those who cannot or prefer not to use the online version of the form (to download the PDF form see Other Downloads). The SMC for Junior leaders is only available as a PDF form.

What to do with the completed forms. The completed forms should be securely stored by the parish indefinitely (we strongly recommend storing all forms electronically). The security of the storage of these forms should not be underestimated due to the highly sensitive nature of the contents. 

SPECIAL NOTE: The Safe Ministry Check form for 13-17 year old’s.

Should any person completing this form disclose that they have been convicted of, charged with or accused of sexual abuse of a child or young person, the Senior Minister or their delegate must obtain advice from the Director of Safe Ministry before appointing the person to a role or allowing them to serve in ministry to children.
This advice can be sought via the contact form (choose ‘Director of Safe Ministry’ as the recipient) or by calling 02 9265 1604

A more detailed guide to assist churches effectively implement the Safe Ministry Assessment and Safe Ministry Check is available here.

For range of common questions pertaining to the SMC and related processes, see the Safe Ministry Check FAQ page. 

Where to now?

For Senior Ministers

Register your church for your volunteers to use the online Safe Ministry Check form (once only process).
Also, download: Guide for Senior Ministers.

For Safe Ministry Reps, admins

A guide to how the SMC will impact your church. Also helpful for admin and pastoral staff.

For all Adult volunteers working with children

Here is the online version of your Safe Ministry Check form.
Note your church must first register to use this.

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