Screening and background checks
IMPORTANT NEWS IMPACTING SCREENING AS 1 JULY 2014:
Two major changes are occurring on 1 July 2014:
- a new fee structure; and
- a new screening type for people working or volunteering for disability service providers funded under the Disability Services Act 1993.
As of 1 July 2014 the new forms on the website must be used for all types of screening.
The fees for screening for paid employees and volunteers will change to:
- $90.50 ($99.55 GST incl.) for child-related and disability services employment screening for paid employees;
- $75.00 ($82.50 GST incl.) for all other forms of screening for paid employees; and
- $50.00 ($55.00 GST incl.) for all forms of screening conducted for volunteers and students on placement.
Applications received by the Screening Unit from 1 July 2014 will be charged using the new fee structure. Applications lodged at Australia Post from 1 July 2014 will also be charged using the new fee structure.
Where an employee requires more than one type of screening, they will be charged for each separate screening. Those who have a current working with children screening assessment will be exempt from the requirement to undergo a disability services screening assessment. Volunteers requiring more than one type of screening will only be charged one fee of $50.00 ($55.00 GST incl.) (provided that the screening application forms are attached together and submitted at the same time).
Disability Services Employment Screening
A new screening regime has been introduced through amendments to the Disability Services Act 1993 and corresponding Disability Services (Assessment of Relevant History) Regulations 2014. People working or volunteering in a prescribed function under the Disability Services Act 1993 must, from 1 July 2014, undergo 'Disability Services Employment screening' by the Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI) Screening Unit.
Applicants requiring a Disability Services Employment Screening must use the new Disability Services form from 1 July 2014. Older versions of the form will not be accepted and will be returned to the applicant or requesting officer.
Please refer to the FAQs here (PDF 289.2 KB) for further information.
What is Screening?
Screening is an assessment of information obtained about an individual to determine whether they may pose a risk to a particular group of people in a professional or volunteer environment.
The Department for Communities and Social Inclusion (DCSI) Screening Unit is authorised under the Children's Protection Regulations 2010 (PDF 68KB) to conduct Child-Related Employment Screening for people who work with children and young people.
The Screening Unit is also authorised under the DisabilityServices (Assessment of Relevant History Regulations 2014) to conduct Disability Services Employment Screening for peopleworking or volunteering in a prescribed function under the DisabilityServices Act 1993.
The Screening Unit also conducts Vulnerable Person-Related Employment screening, Aged Care Sector Employment Screening and General Employment Probity Screening to provide greater safety and certainty for vulnerable people in South Australia and their friends and families.
The Screening and Assessment Process outlines the different types of information that are assessed as part of each form of screening.
Applying for a screening check
Before you start…
Make sure that you have downloaded the most recent version of our application form. The Screening Unit regularly updates our application forms, and it is important you use the correct version. Out-of-date forms may be returned to you.
Make sure you submit original versions of the form: the Screening Unit will not accept photocopied or scanned versions of forms.
Read the How to Apply section of our website. This section contains important instructions for filling out application forms. If you make a mistake, your form may be returned and/or processing of your application may be delayed. You may incur additional charges if a mistake requires the Screening Unit to obtain an additional National Criminal History Record Check.
If you have a query or a problem, read our Frequently Asked Questions. The Screening Unit receives hundreds of calls and emails every day; reading our FAQs might help answer your question.
For your application to be processed, your identity must have been verified using a 100 point identity check and you must have provided your consent to screening by signing the application form.
How long does it take?
The screening process will only commence once the Screening Unit has received a correctly completed form. A number of factors may impact upon the time taken to process your application.
The following information is intended as a guide only, specifically in relation to child-related employment screening. Other forms of screening will usually be processed more quickly.
If the Screening Unit does not identify any risk requiring assessment, the turnaround time for your screening should be approximately 20 business days.
If the Screening Unit obtains information that requires further assessment, for example, if your name registers as a match in any of the databases assessed by the Screening Unit, additional time may be required. In some cases it may take more than 8 weeks to process your application, depending on the relevance, complexity, and amount of information which requires assessment.
Various other factors may impact upon the time taken to process your application, including:
- the time of year (January-April is traditionally the busiest time of year);
- the process of obtaining information from other agencies across Australia; and
- the process of police agencies distinguishing simple name matches from similarly-named individuals with relevant information.
The following common mistakes frequently result in forms being returned to the applicant for resubmission:
- illegible handwriting;
- not including your FULL name and/or FULL previous names;
- insufficient current address detail;
- insufficient information describing your role;
- failure to complete satisfactorily the 100 point identification check; and
- missing signatures: 3 signatures MUST BE included – the applicant, the verifying officer and, if not paying through Australia Post, the requesting officer.
IT IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT THAT YOU COMPLETE EACH SECTION OF THE FORM AND CHECK IT THOROUGHLY BEFORE SUBMISSION.