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17th August 2017
A new power for Disability Services Commissioner (DSC) are inspection powers of disability services by DSC Authorised Officers for the purpose of responding to reports of abuse and neglect.
A number of senior DSC staff have been appointed to this position, and they are immediately available to inspect disability service providers where concerns have been raised.
What do these inspection powers involve?
These inspection powers allow DSC Authorised Officers to:
DSC Authorised Officers will ask for consent to enter a private bedroom in supported accommodation and to view medical records.
How can staff recognise a DSC Authorised Officer when they visit?
DSC Authorised Officers will be equipped with an official DSC Authorised Officer identification card. Officers will show their identification to the person in charge at the service, and talk to them about why they are making a visit.
You can call DSC on 1800 677 342 and speak to a member of the DSC Resolutions team to confirm the identification or authority of the Authorised Officers.
When or why would DSC use their inspection powers?
If DSC is notified of a time-critical concern that affects the safety and wellbeing of people with a disability in a disability service (e.g. there is no food in a shared supported accommodation home or there are unsafe practices), the Commissioner can decide to inspect the service to investigate the concern.
This allows DSC to assess the actual conditions at the time of the concern. Collection of evidence and information is time-critical.
What happens to the information gathered by Authorised Officers?
Information gathered by Authorised Officers will be used to inform ongoing responses to issues raised.
The information gathered during an inspection may also be shared with appropriate statutory bodies including but not limited to the Department of Health and Human Services, the National Disability Insurance Agency, and Victoria Police.
What if I have more questions?
If you have further questions, you may contact DSC on 1300 728 187 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Level 20, 570 Bourke Street,
Melbourne, Victoria, 3000 Australia
Call for enquiries or complaints - 1800 677 342
Email for enquiries or complaints - email@example.com