Behavioural standards

Being clear on our expectations of staff behavior towards children

The Uniting code of conduct outlines clear set of behavioural standards Uniting expects from all employees towards children both at work and in the community.

We take courageous action for children in our communities, and speak out with one voice to create impact and change. We define respectful behaviour towards children through our Code of Conduct. This underpins how you should behave, both at work, at home and in the community.

Uniting people commit to:

  • Uphold the values of Uniting, to be imaginative, respectful compassionate and bold
  • Behave as a positive role model to children and young people, and to their community
  • Treat all children with respect
  • Uphold and advocate for children’s rights
  • Provide opportunities for children to be empowered through decision-making
  • Speak with children respectfully, using positive and affirming language
  • Intervene when children or young people are engaging in inappropriate bullying behaviour towards others or acting in a humiliating or vilifying way
  • Ensure permission is sort prior to taking photos or videos, and images are saved according to the Uniting Acceptable Use of IT Policy
  • Seek advice about suspicions and disclosures of child abuse or neglect by speaking with your People manager or another senior staff member immediately
  • Uphold their obligations to report a breach of the code immediately.

Uniting people acknowledge the following behaviours are disrespectful towards children and commit to not:

  • Engage in rough physical behaviour with a child or young person
  • Use physical means to control or discipline a child, other than reasonable restraint, such as by holding a child to prevent injury
  • Hold, kiss, cuddle, or touch a child, in a manner considered inappropriate in the context of a program/activity/occasion, except for appropriate touch (for example, to comfort distress)
  • Assist children do things of a personal nature that they can do for themselves
  • Spend time alone or remain in a confined or secluded space with a child or young person, in a manner considered inappropriate in the context of a program/activity/occasion
  • Make sexually suggestive comments to a child or young person
  • Isolate or make offensive or inappropriate comments to children regarding their background, religion, appearance, abilities or sexuality
  • Store images of children related to their work on their phone or any personal device
  • Give personal gifts or favours that target a particular child
  • Cultivate relationships online or through social media with children and young people without parental or guardian permission and parents/guardians/leaders being included on messaging lists. Any private messaging to a child or young person should be sent and returned during pre-approved times
  • Share or send sexually suggestive or explicit material to a child in any form, including email, text, video or sound file
  • Use disrespectful language near or around children
  • Take a child to their  home, or encourage private meetings outside of work-related activities unless authorised
  • Take unauthorised photos or movies of a child without consent from the parent or guardian
  • Publish unauthorised photos or videos of a child, including online, without parental or guardian consent
  • Publish unauthorised private information online about a child that may identify them, such as their full name, age, email address, telephone number, residence, school, or details of a club or group they may attend.

Across Uniting we commit to upholding respectful behaviour towards children. Not reporting or ignoring behaviours will result in action. We do this as individuals, we do this as teams, and we do this as Uniting.

If you have concerns that a staff member may have breached this commitment, please contact Uniting.

Download the complete Uniting Code of Conduct.

Get in touch

Our customer service team is available from Monday – Friday, 8.00am – 6.00pm AEST.

Call us on 1800 864 846 (1800 UNITING).

Email us at ask@uniting.org