Protecting children’s rights and staying safe

All children have the right not to be hurt or harmed by anyone. GBSS therapy services have risk management processes compliant with current child safety legislation. All workers have current Blue Cards and criminal history checks.

Please note all of our staff are required to report critical incidents to the Therapy Manager within 24 hours, and these will be reviewed within the following 24 hours.

Privacy and confidentiality

GBSS upholds the rights of clients and staff to dignity, privacy and confidentiality regarding personal information, background, health status, communications and relationships. We will take steps to ensure that privacy is maintained under all reasonable circumstances.

Clients and staff have the right to access information about themselves held by the service.

Critical incidents

A critical incident involves death, serious injury, harm or suspected harm.

  • ‘Serious injury’ means an injury for which treatment from a doctor has been sought or ought reasonably to have been sought (Div. 5, s.81(5) Child Care Act 2002)
  • ‘Harm’ to a person is any detrimental effect of a significant nature on the person’s physical, psychological, financial or emotional wellbeing. It is immaterial how the harm is caused. Harm can be caused by physical, psychological or emotional abuse or neglect, or by sexual abuse or exploitation (S.9 Child Protection Act 1999)


If you don’t like something about our service or something is making you unhappy, it is important to let us know as soon as possible. We will deal with this as quickly as possible and in a confidential way.

What to do?

If you have a complaint or a concern, this is what you can do:

  1. Act quickly – let someone know as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the less clear everything can become and it could be harder to sort out.
  2. Make it clear – try to think clearly about all the things that took place and in what order. Try to remember dates and times, and describe what happened in detail.
  3. Talk with the person involved – many worries and concerns can be worked out quickly and easily by talking with the person involved, the Therapy Manager or the GBSS Inc Client Representative (4681 3020).  We will let you know who is responsible for helping you with your complaint and how long things will take before they are sorted out. We will also help you to have a trusted friend or advocate with you.
  4. Make a formal complaint – if you don’t want to talk with the person involved about your worries and concerns or to the Therapy Manager or Client Representative, or if you feel your concerns haven’t been sorted out properly, you can talk to people on the GBSS Management Committee or make a formal complaint to our Government funding bodies.

The GBSS Dispute Resolution Procedure:

  • Initial resolution – Parties to the dispute will try to resolve the matter themselves.
    • Time line: Until either party wants to refer the matter to management review or until the dispute is resolved.
    • Responsibility: Staff involved seeking to resolve dispute, refer to management if dispute not resolved.
  • Management review – Dispute referred to the Therapy Manager (TM) or if dispute involves the TM, to the GBSS Inc Management Committee. An Advocate will be arranged for client if required.
    • Time line: Dispute to be dealt with in 10 working days.
    • Responsibility: Management Committee or TM to manage dispute.
  • Internal review – Disputes referred to a Disputes Committee. Advocate to be arranged for client if required.
    • Time line: Dispute to be dealt with by Disputes Committee within 28 working days if possible.
    •  Responsibility: Disputes Committee to be made up of three independent members (see work guidelines for details). Disputes Committee Chairperson to manage dispute. Staff assist as required.
    • Actions: Mediate the dispute. If unsuccessful refer to external review.
  • External review – Dispute referred to External Disputes Committee made up of one staff member and one management committee member from another service. Advocate will be arranged for client if required.
    • Time Line: Dispute to be dealt with within 40 working days if possible.
    • Responsibility: External Disputes Committee Chairperson to manage dispute. Staff and GBSS committee members to assist as needed.
    • Actions: Mediate the dispute and make a recommendation to management committee