ACCSA is a non-profit Association that promotes both the analysis of and the professionalisation of the Children’s Contact Services sector in Australia.
The Association is voluntary and independent.
ACCSA is not resourced to undertake accreditation of services, provide a regulatory framework nor receive complaints about the CCS sector.
Only federally funded Children’s Contact Services that operate under government oversight are eligible for membership of ACCSA. Government funded services are required to operate according to the Children’s Contact Services Guiding Principles Framework for Good Practice (2014) as a part of their funding agreement.
Member services also agree to self-regulate according to the ACCSA Standards (2008) and the ACCSA Code of Ethics (2009).
ACCSA provides information to the general community and acts as a network for the CCS sector.
The Association’s current activities include lobbying for the regulation of both funded and privately operated CCSs, the facilitation of national conferences and training forums and the upkeep of a comprehensive, information based website.
ACCSA’S REGULATION CAMPAIGN
The Australian Children’s Contact Services Association’s “CCS Regulation Campaign” sees the assurance of a better quality and more uniform practice being achieved through two major steps:
Step A – The development, implementation and maintenance of a CCS Accreditation System that is based upon the operational standards articulated in The Children’s Contact Services Guiding Principles Framework for Good Practice (2014)
Step B – The implementation of regulation that requires the Courts and others, such as Family Dispute Resolution practitioners, to only order or refer families to accredited CCSs
ACCSA has advocated the need for the regulation of all Children’s Contact Services via the publication of an article in the Australian Institute of Family Studies newsletter.
Click here to read the article “Children’s Contact Services: ACCSA Seeks Regulation”
Click here to join ACCSA as either a CCS Service Member (for government funded CCSs) or as an ACCSA Supporter 2017.
CCS Online Directory (Template Link)
The Attorney-General’s Department has provided a grant to the Australian Children’s Contact Services Association (ACCSA) to develop an Online Children’s Contact Service Information Directory.
The purpose of the Directory is to provide for more informed and safer decisions to be made about utilising a particular Children’s Contact Service, in order to facilitate contact between a parent and their child/ren.
Funded, full fee paying and privately operated CCSs will receive an information template in the near future for completion and return. The information will then be posted online, with the option of providing information updates as required.
A copy of the template can be downloaded by CCS providers by clicking on this link.
Vic Royal Commission Family Violence Report
The Royal Commission into Family Violence Report has been tabled in parliament. Reference has been made to the need for better funding of CCSs, regulation of the sector and the overall need to “ensure that victims of family violence, and children affected by family violence, have a safe environment in which to have contact with an alleged perpetrator where contact is ordered by the court.” (Vol IV p.216 – The Way Forward)
Read the full Report here.
ACCSA’S RESOURCE SHEETS
The Australian Children’s Contact Services Association has produced a CCS FACTS SHEET and a CCS REFERRERS CHECKLIST for those referring to or needing to use a Children’s Contact Service. Just click on the link below to download a copy of each:
ACCSA INFORMATION VIDEO
ACCSA’s information video “5 Steps To Contact” is a must for anyone who will be using a Children’s Contact Service.
This video walks a family member through the necessary steps involved prior to the first contact visit taking place and assists in the understanding of how CCSs operate.
Click here to view “5 Steps To Contact”.