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Glossary

  • The 10-Year Community Services Industry Planpresents a unified vision for the Victorian community services industry and the actions required to achieve this vision. Developed by the industry, it aims to provide a shared platform for government and community services that both articulates and responds to the opportunities and challenges facing the industry. It sets out the actions and commitments that will be required for successful implementation of its vision and the capabilities, competencies and infrastructure required to deliver an integrated, whole-of-society approach.

  • Dhelk Dja: Safe Our Way – Strong Culture, Strong Peoples, Strong Families is the Aboriginal-led 10 Year Victorian Aboriginal Family Violence Agreement. It commits the signatories – Aboriginal communities, Aboriginal services and government – to work together and be accountable for ensuring that Aboriginal people, families and communities are stronger, safer, thriving and living free from family violence. Dhelk Dja articulates the long-term partnership and directions required at a state-wide, regional and local level to ensure that Aboriginal people, families and communities are violence free,  and built upon the foundation of Aboriginal self-determination. 

  • Identification and support for individuals and families experiencing family violence with the aim of stopping early signs of violence escalating, preventing a recurrence of violence or reducing longer-term harm.

  • Elder abuse is a form of family violence under the Act. It is often referred to as 'any act occurring within a relationship where there is an implication of trust, which results in harm to an older person. Abuse may be physical, sexual, financial, psychological, social and/or neglect.'

  • Everybody Matters: Inclusion and Equity Statement (Everybody Matters) sets out the Victorian Government’s long-term vision for the creation of a family violence system that is more inclusive, responsive and accessible to all Victorians. The statement aims to build a shared understanding across government, the family violence service system, its workforces and the community about taking an intersectional approach to better support those who experience or who use family violence. Everybody Matters identifies key frameworks that support an intersectional approach and is intended to be a guiding document for anyone with responsibility for policy development or service planning, design and delivery.

  • The word family has many different meanings. In this Plan, the word is intended to be all-encompassing and acknowledges the variety of relationships and structures that can make up a family unit and kinship networks and the range of ways family violence can be experienced, including through family-like or carer relationships, and across all genders and sexualities.

  • In this Plan, family violence has the meaning set out in the Family Violence Protection Act 2008 (Vic). This includes a range of behaviours by a person towards a family member of that person that is physically, sexually, emotionally, psychologically, or economically abusive, or behaviour that is threatening or coercive. Family violence also includes any other way that a person controls or dominates that family member and causes that family member to feel fear for the safety or wellbeing of that family member or another person. 

    Family violence includes behaviour by a person that causes a child to hear or witness, or otherwise be exposed to the effects of, the behaviour outlined above. 

    In line with Building from Strength, this Plan recognises that family violence is a deeply gendered issue. While family violence takes many forms and affects many in our community, structural inequalities and unequal power relations between men and women mean that women are more likely to experience family violence. 

    This Plan also recognises that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s experience of family violence is compounded by experiences of racism and marginalisation. While the violence also has gendered patterns, there are other factors at play, deeply rooted in the impacts of colonisation and violent dispossession, particularly the loss of land and culture and the high levels of intergenerational trauma experienced by Aboriginal women, men, children, families and communities.

    This Plan acknowledges the definition of family violence for Aboriginal people set out in Dhelk Dja: Safe Our way – Strong Culture, Strong Peoples, Strong Families. This includes the violence of non-Aboriginal people against Aboriginal partners, children, young people and extended family on spiritual and cultural rights, which manifests as exclusion or isolation from Aboriginal Culture and/or community. 

  • Family violence response includes services for both victim survivors and perpetrators of family violence. Family violence response aims to support victim survivor safety and recovery and perpetrator accountability. 

  • For the purposes of this plan, family violence system refers to the broad system of organisations and services across the community services, health, justice and education and training sectors that can play a role in prevention, early intervention and response to people experiencing or perpetrating family violence. 

  • Free from Violence: Victoria’s strategy to prevent family violence and all forms of violence against women was released in 2017 to guide our efforts to stop family violence and violence against women before it starts. Free from Violence builds on the work of the family violence and primary prevention sectors and has benefited from the leadership of victims of family violence and violence against women, VicHealth, women’s health services, Aboriginal communities and services, local government, primary prevention advocates and organisations, and academics. Achieving a Victoria free from violence will require multiple strategies to address the complex social conditions that drive violence in the first place, delivered in everyday settings and across the spectrum of people’s lives, with a momentum that counteracts the size and scale of the problem.

  • The Industry Taskforce was established in 2016 to guide the development and implementation of Building from Strength. Chaired by the Minister for Prevention of Family Violence, the Industry Taskforce comprises expert stakeholders from across family violence and sexual assault services, primary prevention organisations, community services, justice, health and education sectors, including representatives from peak bodies, professional  organisations, unions and education and training providers. The Industry Taskforce is supported by an Implementation Sub-group and a Qualifications Subgroup. 

  • The term intersectionality describes how systems and structures interact on multiple levels to oppress, create barriers and overlapping forms of discrimination, stigma and power imbalances based on characteristics such as Aboriginality, gender, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, colour, nationality, refugee or asylum seeker background, migration or visa status, language, religion, ability, age, mental health, socioeconomic status, housing status, geographic location, medical record or criminal record. This compounds the risk of experiencing family violence and creates additional barriers for a person to access the help they need.

  • The MARAM Framework can be used by all services that come into contact with individuals and families experiencing family violence. The MARAM Framework aims to establish a system-wide shared understanding of family violence. It will guide professionals across the continuum of service responses, across the range of presentations and spectrum of risk. It will provide information and resources that professionals need to keep victim survivors safe, and to keep perpetrators in view and hold them accountable for their actions. It covers all aspects of service delivery from early identification, screening, risk assessment and management, to safety planning, collaborative practice, stabilisation and recovery. The MARAM Framework provides policy guidance to organisations that have responsibilities in assessing and managing family violence risk, including those that have been prescribed under regulation as Framework organisations.

    Prescribed organisations are those that are prescribed by regulation to be a Framework organisation for the purposes of Part 11 of the Family Violence Protection Act and required to align their policies, procedures, practice guidance and tools to it. References in this document to framework organisations include section 191 agencies. 

  • In this plan, a perpetrator is someone who chooses to use family violence.

  • Primary prevention aims to prevent violence from ever happening in the first place. It works by identifying the deep underlying causes of violence – the social norms, structures and practices that influence individual attitudes and behaviours – and acting across the whole population to change these. Primary prevention is distinct from early intervention and crisis response activities (also known as secondary and tertiary response) that aim to stop violence from escalating or recurring. Effective primary prevention supports and complements early intervention and crisis response efforts by reducing pressure on these parts of the system. 

  • Safe and Strong: Victoria’s Gender Equality Strategy (Safe and Strong) sets out a framework for building the attitudinal and behavioural change required to reduce violence against women and delivering gender equality. Safe and Strong draws on global evidence of what works in gender equality, and sets out the founding reforms and a new standard for action by the Victorian Government. Safe and Strong includes the Victorian Gender Equality Outcomes Framework.

  • Violence against women as defined by the United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women (1993) means any act of gender-based violence that causes or could cause physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of harm or coercion, in public or in private life. It is broader than what is covered by the term ‘family violence’ and includes, for example, sexual assault and harassment perpetrated by someone other than an intimate partner or family member.

  • Workforce planning is a tool that assists organisations and managers to plan for the future, anticipate change, manage their  workforces and meet their business goals. It provides a framework for making workforce decisions that align with the strategic goals of the organisation. The workforce plan identifies how future staffing and skill needs will be met (i.e.via recruiting, development, internal deployment, recruitment, succession planning). A workforce plan will help an organisation meet its objectives by ensuring that the staffing profile of the organisation has the right capabilities to meet current and future demands.

Training Terms

  • An accredited training course is a nationally recognised course that: 

    • meets national quality assurance requirements
    • meets an established industry, enterprise, educational, legislative or community need 
    • provides appropriate competency outcomes and a basis for assessment

    A course can be accredited as a short course (with a Statement of Attainment ‘Course in’ outcome) or a qualification recognised within the Australian Qualifications Framework (including Certificates I-IV, Diploma and Advanced Diploma, Graduate Certificate).

  • Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) or organisations working in partnership with an RTO are authorised to deliver training packages qualifications and units of competency, if the RTO has the training package product/s on their scope of registration. 

    An RTO’s training and assessment may only be delivered by trainers and assessors who have:

    • the vocational competencies at least to the level being delivered and assessed
    • current industry skills directly relevant to the training and assessment being provided
    • current knowledge and skills in vocational training and learning that informs their training and assessment

    In addition, training and assessment may only be delivered by persons who:

    • holds the mandated training and education credential, or 
    • holds one of the relevant training skills sets, are supervised by a credentialed trainer and assessor and does not determine assessment outcomes
  • This plan uses the term capability to refer to a person’s ability to perform their role or profession. While the term ‘competencies’ often refers to the required knowledge and skills necessary to perform a job, the term capability is preferred because it refers more broadly to a person’s ability to develop or improve. 

    This plan also refers to organisational capability which is defined as an organisation’s potential to perform by successfully applying its skills and resources to accomplish its goals and satisfy its stakeholders’ expectations. The skills and resources that make up an organisation’s capability may include staffing, infrastructure, technology, financial resources, strategic leadership, process management, and networks and linkages with other organisations and stakeholders.

  • A competency-based assessment confirms that an individual can perform tasks to the standard expected in the workplace. Evidence of competency is gathered and then assessed by a credentialed assessor. Evidence might include direct evidence observed by the assessor (including observations of workplace performance, oral questioning or a demonstration), indirect evidence (evidence that can be reviewed or examined by the assessor such as written assignments or tests), and supplementary evidence (evidence presented to the assessor to support a candidate’s claim of competence such as reports from supervisors, testimonials from employers, etc). 

    RTOs are required to make judgments on the validity, currency and authenticity of the evidence, and are encouraged to minimise the burden of evidence gathering where possible – for example, using work-based evidence before setting an assessment task. 

  • A non-accredited training course is any structured training program that is not formally accredited by a VET Regulator or endorsed by the Australian Industry and Skills Committee, and does not lead to the achievement of a Statement of Attainment or formal qualification aligned to the Australian Qualifications Framework. 

  • Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) are organisations registered by a state or territory recognition authority according to national standards to be eligible to issue qualifications and statements of attainment under the Australian Qualifications Framework. RTOs operating in Victoria include TAFEs and dual sector universities, adult and community education providers (including Learn Locals), and forprofit and not-for-profit organisations. 

  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is a process whereby an organisation authorised to issue qualifications (e.g. a Registered Training Organisation or university) assesses an individual’s relevant prior learning as part of the individual’s application for credit towards a qualification. That is, the organisation assesses the extent to which the learning outcomes that an individual has already achieved are equivalent to the learning outcomes of some or all of the destination qualification. 

    Prior learning may be: 

    • Informal learning. This is gained through work, social, family, hobby or leisure activities. Unlike formal or non-formal learning, informal learning is not organised or externally structured in terms of objectives, time or learning support. 
    • Formal learning. This takes place through a structured program of learning leading to a full or partial achievement of an officially accredited qualification.
    • Non-formal learning. This takes place through a structured program of learning but does not lead to an officially accredited qualification (e.g. a non-accredited course). 

    RPL credit may be used for entry to a course or to reduce the amount of learning required to achieve a qualification.

  • In this plan, training architecture refers to the foundational elements required for systematic, consistent, high quality training. Training architecture may include standards, accredited content and providers required to deliver the mechanisms required to build long-term capability uplift. In general, elements of training architecture will be subject to regular review processes to ensure currency. 

  • As a training package or accredited course sets out the competencies but does not prescribe how the training should be delivered or the time taken to deliver it, a training and assessment strategy is developed by the training provider to translate the training package and the associated competency requirements into a meaningful learning experience for learners.

  • Developed by Service Skills Organisations to meet the training needs of an industry or group of industries, training packages are a key part of the national training system. Training packages do not suggest how a learner should be trained. Instead, they specify the skills and knowledge required to perform effectively in the workplace. Each training package is made up of three components:

    • Units of competency
    • Qualifications framework 
    • Assessment guidelines

    The Community Services Training Package has 15 units of competency related to family violence which can be packaged into a range of courses spanning community services, health, justice and public safety.

  • Training products include all associated material used to deliver training, including: 

    • national industry training packages (such as Australian Qualifications Framework qualifications, units of competency, and Skill Sets)
    • Training Package Companion Volumes
    • VET accredited courses
    • training and assessment resources
  • There are two regulators relevant to VET in Victoria.

    Victorian Registration and Accreditation Authority (VRQA) 

    The VRQA is responsible for registering and regulating organisations in Victoria that wish to offer VET qualifications and courses to domestic students in Victoria only, or in Victoria and Western Australia only. 

    Australian Standards and Quality Authority (ASQA)

    ASQA is the regulatory body for jurisdictions other than Victoria and Western Australia, except where RTOs in Victoria and Western Australia:

    • offer courses to overseas students; and/or
    • offer courses to students (including through offering courses online) in jurisdictions other than Western Australia

Reviewed 24 February 2020

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