Creating child safe institutions

July 2016


The Royal Commission has been working to identify the key elements that institutions should adopt in order to be child safe. Through a significant scoping exercise, we identified a preliminary list of elements which we considered to be necessary in creating a child safe institution. We tested these elements through a research study that obtained feedback from a panel of 40 Australian and international experts. The panel agreed that the elements we identified were relevant, reliable and achievable. Following this testing process, we have confirmed that there are 10 key elements that are needed to create a child safe institution. We considered it timely to disseminate the child safe elements to assist institutions’ work on strengthening their child safe approaches. The Royal Commission’s final report will include an entire volume on making institutions child safe and recommendations about implementing the child safe elements.

Key elements of Child Safe Organisations: Research Study

kylie valentine, Ilan Katz, Ciara Smyth, Cathy Bent, Sophia Rinaldis, Catherine Wade and Bianca Albers

June 2016

ISBN 978-1-925289-21-3


The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse (Royal Commission) engaged the Social Policy Research Centre and the Parenting Research Centre to undertake an adapted Delphi Study to obtain advice, opinion and consensus from a panel of independent experts on what should constitute key principles, elements and sub-elements of child safe organisations.  Researchers asked the experts about the importance and general achievability of identified elements of child safe organisations, as well as about the associated costs and risks of implementing certain practices or processes considered important to ensuring child safety. The research used an adapted Delphi study methodology, designed to elicit the advice, opinions and consensus of the panel on what should constitute the key principles, elements and sub-elements of child safe organisations. The Delphi approach was modified to accommodate the comprehensive elements document drafted by the Royal Commission, and allow the study to be administered over two survey rounds. This report presents findings from both stages of data collection.