Child Protection Forum draws 60 leaders

Jeremy Spinak, Emeritus Professor Bettina Cass AO.
Jeremy Spinak, Emeritus Professor Bettina Cass AO.

Over 60 representatives from various organisations attended the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies symposium on child protection.

The purpose of the symposium was to prioritise the development of protocols for child protection for the NSW Jewish community. The protocols will be adopted by all organisations in the NSW Jewish community

The founding principle behind the Task Force into Child Abuse is to ensure the ongoing protection of children in our community from any form of abuse.

The symposium was chaired by Emeritus Professor Bettina Cass, Chair of the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies Task Force on Child Protection. Other speakers included Dr Kathy Kezelman, President, Adults Surviving Child Abuse (ASCA), Deborah Blackman, Prevention Trainer, EduCare- Protecting our children together, Rabbi Mendel Kastel, CEO Jewish House, and, Lana Carneiro Gomes, Compliance Officer from the Office of the Children’s Guardian, who explained the statutory obligations of community organisations and services in accordance with their Working with Children Check requirements.

A highlight was a panel discussion by representatives from Jewish day schools and Maccabi, sharing examples of child safe policies and practices that they have developed. The session was moderated by Jacquie Seemann Charak, a partner in Employment and Safety at Thomson Geer.

In his closing remarks NSW Jewish Board of Deputies President Jeremy Spinak stressed that the forum was “just a beginning” and that the task force and the community would come together on numerous occasions to collaborate to create protocols and procedures for the entire NSW Jewish community  to ensure that children are able to be in a safe  environment.

You can access either Professor Bettina Cass’s paper or the Dr Cathy Kezelman’s powerpoint slides here.