Standard 5 focuses on equity and diversity, and making sure all children feel welcome.
It requires that:
- children’s needs are understood and respected
- any necessary adjustments are made so all children are equally protected at the service
- children have access to information, support and complaints processes that are culturally safe, accessible and easy to understand.
Each child has the right to fully participate at the service. All barriers must be consciously addressed using a strengths-based approach.
Services must pay particular attention to the needs of children at higher risk of harm due to their vulnerability:
- Aboriginal children
- children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
- children who are unable to live at home
- gender diverse children.
Actions services must take to comply with Standard 5
Standard 5: Equity is upheld and diverse needs are respected in policy and practice.
Early childhood services must comply with all the following elements of this standard:
- The service, including staff and volunteers, understands children’s diverse circumstances, and provides support and responds to those who are vulnerable (5.1).
- Children have access to information, support and complaints processes in ways that are culturally safe, accessible and easy to understand (5.2).
- The service pays particular attention to the needs of children with disability, children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, those who are unable to live at home, and transgender and intersex children (5.3).
- The service pays particular attention to the needs of Aboriginal children and provides/promotes a culturally safe environment for them (5.4).
How to comply - examples and ideas
Start by reviewing your existing policies and procedures, and compare them with the requirements of Standard 5.
In particular, consider if your service provides:
- equitable outcomes to children specially mentioned in this standard
- a culturally safe environment reflecting the diversity of the children, their families and the local community
- a complaints policy children can understand, and that is culturally safe.
Related standards and regulations