Community & Associations Newsletter – October 2019
The following matters have attracted our recent attention:
- Whistleblower policies required by 1 January 2020.
- External conduct standards now operating.
- Royal Commission into Aged Care progress and anticipated recommendations.
We trust you will enjoy this read.
The Carroll & O’Dea Community & Associations Team
Compulsory Whistleblower Policy
External Conduct Standards
Since 23 July 2019, charities operating outside Australia have been subject to the ACNC External Conduct Standards.
The standards apply to entities which:
a) operate outside Australia – in whole or in part; or
b) work with the parties that are operating outside Australia; or
c) are closely related to or have a significant impact on entities outside Australia.
Grace Brophy, Solicitor
Josephine Heesh, Partner
Aged Care Royal Commission
The Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety (“the Royal Commission”) commenced its hearings in Adelaide on 11 February, 2019.
There have been a number of public hearings and visits to many regional areas.
For the remainder of the year, the Royal Commission will focus on the aged care workforce, provision of aged care in regional areas and then the operations of select approved providers.
No publications have issued since the 2 August 2019 background paper (number 7) on “Legislative framework for Aged Care Quality and Safety regulation”.
The Royal Commission is creating uncertainty in the sector for operators. Those receiving notices to produce documents, and those involved in hearings, are left uncertain of the consequences of their participation and the length of time yet to pass before any recommendations are made by the Commission, or change of law.
For operators seeking to expand or withdraw from the sector the Royal Commission disrupter effect is impacting market value and expansion plans. While in the long run this will be for the benefit of the sector as a whole, the interim period is a challenge to navigate.
Carroll & O’Dea recently enjoyed the privilege of an address given to our Newcastle clients by Dr Robyn Miller who is the Chief Executive Officer of Mackillop Family Services. Mackillop Family Services is a public benevolent institution working across Victoria, NSW and Western Australia. The focus of its work is children, young people and families.
From Dr Miller’s presentation it was uplifting to realise how her passion as a social worker and family therapist over 30 years has brought significant insights to the area of family therapy and child protection.
Dr Miller recited many instances of particular young persons whom she knew personally and encouraged to take jobs, keep away from dysfunctional relationships and build their self-respect.
We were left uplifted by her stories and encouraged to take any small step we could with our own clients to promote their self-esteem and remove any dysfunction from their lives notwithstanding our primary role as legal advisers.