Parish News

St Mark's Parish Safeguarding

 St Mark's Parish Safeguarding

Safeguarding Children

 St Mark's Parish Community 
Parish Safeguarding Support Officer (PSSO)

               Sharon Williams.

 What is a PSSO? A PSSO supports and assists the Parish Priest in fulfilling his role and responsibilities set out in the Archdiocese's safeguarding and child protection policies and protocols. Sharon has taken on this role as a volunteer and will assist with making our parish compliant and working with our volunteers and parishioners in providing a greater understanding of safeguarding and what that means for all in our parish community.

 How to contact the PSSO? Sharon is contactable through the parish office - (02) 9181 1795 or email:

What is Safeguarding and its role? The role of the Safeguarding is to raise awareness regarding our collective responsibility to protect the safety, well-being and dignity of children, young people and vulnerable adults within the Archdiocese of Sydney. The Safeguarding & Ministerial Integrity Office works with PSSO so parishes of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney (CAS) become aware & compliant with NSW legislation. The Child Protection Legislation Amendment Act 2014, which was passed in NSW Parliament on 26 March 2014, changes the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998. This changes are in effect and parishes need to comply.

Why does the Parish need a PSSO? Next year the Catholic Professional Standards Limited (CPSL) will be auditing parishes and church entities throughout Australia. Audits can incur fines for the parish and CPSL will release public reports on each of the dioceses, religious institutes and other Catholic organisations it audits. These reports will indicate whether the leadership of that Church body has ensured that the Catholic Professionals Standards Limited are being met. CPSL can and will publish audit reports on their website which will indicate whether a particular Church Authority has failed an audit.

 Do you volunteer at St Mark's Parish? If you currently volunteer at our parish in any of the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney identified areas listed below you need to have a WWCC (Working with Children Check) details & have signed a Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney Code of Conduct form which are held in the parish office. If you need assistance contact the parish office.

 The Safeguarding & Ministerial Integrity Office, in conjunction with the Parish has identified the following require a Working With Children Check:
* Parish Priests, Assistant Priests
* Parish Secretaries and Administrators
* Youth Ministers, Workers or Leaders
* Pastoral Associates
* Sacramental Coordinators
* Sacramental Group Leaders
* Catechists in State Schools
* Children's Liturgy Coordinators
* Choir & Choir Ministry Leaders
* Acolytes and Senior Altar Servers
* Ministers of the Altar
* Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
* Ministers of the Word
* Parish Counters/Collectors
* Ministers to the Homebound
* Parish Altar Society
* Parish Pastoral Council / Committee members.
* Outreach groups when representating the parish 

 The Safeguarding Office require volunteers to do the following Online Training
*Safeguarding Induction Training for parish volunteers

To do to complete the Online Induction Training you will need to register by following this link   Click Here

 Working With Children Check Legislation Changes
As of 15 June 2018 there has been important legal changes to the Working With Children Check (WWCC) changes include:
* Personal details must be updated: everyone who holds a WWCC is now legally required to update their contact details, including any name or address changes within three months of changing.
* Employers must verify: employers can be penalised if they do not verify their workers or volunteers WWCC numbers or verify if they have applied for one. Fines for not verifying can be issued to every organisation where people work or volunteer with children.
For further information on legislation changes or to apply for a WWCC go to
Anyone who is wanting to work/ volunteer in the Archdiocese of Sydney will need to have a verified WWCC number before commencing work. The verification of WWCC numbers are the responsibility of the Parish.

Linguistic Translations: The Safeguarding Office has arranged for the following translated documents:
* Policy on the care, well-being and protection of children and young people,
* Code of Conduct for working with Children
* Listening to You card
Italian - Arabic - Filipino - Vietnamese 
If you require these translated documents please contact the parish office

St Mark's PSSO Officer through the parish office - (02) 9181 1795  or email:

The Archdiocese has a Safeguarding & Ministerial Integrity Office & the Professional Standards Office to oversee our parish compliance & training.

The Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney Safeguarding Office
If you or a person close to you has been abused by someone working or ministering within the Archdiocese of Sydney we invite you to contact us. We will listen to you respectfully, offer support and discuss the options you have available to you.
Please contact the Safeguarding & Ministerial Integrity Office phone (02) 9390 5812.