Abuse, assault or neglect
ACTS3 believes that the safety and best interests of the person who is the subject of suspected or alleged abuse, assault or neglect is paramount.
Clients and their families, and ACTS3 employees should:
understand their rights;
be aware of what constitutes abuse, assault and neglect, and
be aware of signs and indicators;
Employees are committed to ensuring clients safety.
Response to allegations of abuse or neglect shall occur promptly, sensitively and confidentially to protect the person from further harm and offer the person the medical, psychological and legal assistance to which they are entitled. Staff, Clients, carers and advocates should be aware that any allegations or suspected instances of abuse or neglect, may be reported to the NDIS Quality And Safeguards Commission tel: 1800 035 544 or National Disability Service Abuse and Neglect Hotlin tel: 1800 880 052 TTY: 1800 301 130.
Advocacy is the process of standing alongside an individual and speaking out on their behalf in a way that represents the best interests of that person.
ACTS3 encourages and respects the rights of any client to use an advocate of their choice. The client has the right to change their advocate at any time. We also recognise that effective advocacy needs to be independent and separated from direct service delivery.
ACTS3 invites advocates participation in all areas relating to the services of the person they are supporting. This includes but is not limited to:
complaints and disputes;
informed decision making;
policy development and review;
participation in subcommittees and/or working groups;
strategic planning; and
general meetings or for any other communication between the client and staff.
ACTS3 acknowledges and respects the role of people who act as independent advocates for clients and will undertake to ensure that clients have unimpeded access to their advocate.
ACTS3 will ensure that information about advocacy and how to arrange the involvement of an advocate will be given to the client at the initial assessment meeting. This information will be repeated to the client at regular intervals during the period of service delivery.
ACTS3 will accept, at any time during service delivery, the appointment of an advocate to represent the client. The client or their appointed representative can inform either the Employee or the Service manager of their need for an advocate.
Client Centred Plans
ACTS3 believes you have the right to choose the supports provided to you and how that support is delivered.
ACTS3 Service manager will work with you, in conjunction with any other stakeholders or advocate/s you wish to be involved, to develop a Client Centred Plan / Care Plan outlining your needs. We believe you are in control at all times of the services being provided to you.
The Service manager will discuss with you what requirements you have of support and will include any goals you may have and what strategies will be utilised to achieve these goals. Individuals may choose not to have written goals, this is for you and your support person/advocate to decide.
The Client Centred Plan will be reviewed on a regular basis to make certain that we have the right supports in place to meet your needs and update any information that may have changed.
At each review date all parties will be asked to sign the Client Centred Plan /Care Plan and will be provided with a copy. Clients may request an alternative Client Centred Plan format in the situation where this Client Centred Plan does not meet the needs of the client.
A copy of this documentation is shown to your support workers so they are aware of the care and support needs you require and what duties and tasks are expected of them while on shift. These care plans will be updated at Service reviews or as needed.
Client’s Rights and Responsibilities
Individuals are given a copy of their rights and responsibilities during the initial intake process and will be asked to sign they have read and acknowledged that they have received this information.
You have the right to be treated with dignity and respect.
You have the right to be informed about what services are available.
You have a right to choose what service you will receive.
You have the right to privacy and confidentiality.
You have the right to express your own views and ideas.
You have the right to have someone with you when seen by a health professional.
You have the right to have someone to speak on your behalf.
You have the right to have access your records held by this agency.
To respect ACTS3 staff and other clients and communicate appropriately and respectfully at all times.
To understand that the home is a “workplace” and that workplace health safety must be adhered to.
To respect the conditions on the agreed service plan between you and this agency.
Confidentiality, Privacy and Dignity policy
ACTS3 understands we are trusted with keeping your information private and only discussing or sharing this information with appropriate people as outlined in ACTS3 policies and procedures. We respect your right to privacy and will only disclose information with your consent.
ACTS3 keeps clients personal information in a private file stored in a locked filing cabinet in the ACTS3 office.
ACTS3 does not pass your personal information on to anyone without your consent. Clients are asked to sign a client consent form which outlines what information they wish ACTS3 to obtain, release and store. ACTS3 staff are required to sign a confidentiality agreement that protects the rights of clients.
All ACTS3’s employees are required to sign a Confidentiality Agreement upon appointment to the organisation.
Code of Conduct
What is Code of Conduct?
ACTS3 is committed to encouraging a safe, supportive and productive work environment. This can only happen when everyone cooperates and agrees to suitable standards of conduct. Some of these standards are set out in the Employee Code of Conduct.
This Code of Conduct is not intended to be exhaustive and cannot anticipate every situation which may morally or ethically compromise the employee, or ACTS3. In this regard ACTS3 expects its employees to use their common sense and sound judgment. However, compliance with this Code is an obligation owed by all employees to each other and to ACTS3. Breach of this Code will result in disciplinary action or dismissal.
Employee’s of ACTS3 have an ongoing responsibility to comply with organisational Workplace Health and Safety policies and procedures, Legislated Acts and regulations and to adhere to safe work practice.
All ACTS3’s employees are required to read and sign a Code of Conduct Form upon appointment to the organisation.
Culturally Appropriate Support
ACTS3 provides proactive strategies to promote the cultural, ethnic, religious, and individual beliefs of the clients. Support/advocate persons are encouraged to share the cultural values with disability support workers and ACTS3 to assist in this process.
ACTS3 provides flexible, sensitive and culturally appropriate care for our clients. We work toward building relationships and connectedness between staff, clients and their families, in order to achieve mutual understandings and meet individual client need.
ACTS3 is aware of how race and ethnicity influence family life and the way in which support is carried out. Staff are provided with cultural awareness training as well as collaborating with families to meet specific cultural requirements.
Duty of Care
A support worker has a duty of care to the person they are supporting and others in the general community when working within a community environment. A duty of care is breached if a person behaves unreasonably or fails to act (which can also be unreasonable in a particular situation). A duty of care can be breached either by action or inaction.
Harm can fall under any or all of these four headings:
Duty of Care means that while you are receiving our services we will do everything reasonable to take care of your safety and well being at all times. ACTS3 has a responsibility to be careful where injury or harm is foreseeable. ACTS3 also has a responsibility and Duty of Care to staff. We will not be able to provide supports where duty of care to client and/or staff person is compromised.
Dignity of Risk
ACTS3 believes you have the right to make an informed choice; to experience life and take advantage of opportunities for learning, developing competencies and independence and, in doing so, take a calculated risk.
ACTS3 and support workers are under obligation to ensure duty of care is carried while supporting the person to fulfill their desired goals.
Least Restrictive Alternative
The Least Restrictive Alternative principle states our need to be least intrusive on the lives of those we support. We recognise your right to live in an environment which is most supportive and the least restrictive of your freedom.
We will respect your autonomy and independence. You will have the opportunity to exercise choice and make decisions about your life. We encourage you to be involved in the decision-making process at various levels of service delivery, either by participating directly or having a representative participate.
When assisting you to exercise choice and make decisions, we will take care to ensure you understand the meaning of the options presented; and we will give you as much information as possible to enable you to make informed choices. Our Support Workers will discuss with you any risk that you may face as a result of a decision. If there is doubt about the possibility of harm, you can further discuss concerns with ACTS3 Management.
We believe we can support you to exercise your right to make decisions about issues affecting you by ensuring:
Individual Care Plans state the YOUR preferences;
The day-to-day routines developed give maximum opportunity for you to exercise choice and make decisions;
You are encouraged, wherever practical, to make decisions about your residence, employment and relationships; and
We encourage you to develop skills required to participate in meetings.
ACTS3 believes you should make decisions or be supported in making decisions about who will assist you in your personal care and the timing of your daily routine (for example, when to go to bed, when to eat, when to do chores, what to eat and drink and so on). We will empower you by ‘stepping back’ and letting you do tasks at your own pace!
All people in our community have the right to complain if a service they are receiving is inadequate. They have the right to access appropriate bodies who will listen and act on any grievances that occur.
ACTS3 recognises and supports the right of the client and their family to complain about the service provided. If people are concerned or unhappy with their service or the treatment they receive they are invited to discuss their grievance with ACTS3. We make every effort to resolve grievances in this initial process. We want you to feel comfortable to initiate this process without fear of discrimination and in the knowledge that a satisfactory resolution will be pursued.
Contact ACTS3 with your concerns and we will address all complaints whether formal or informal in a fair and positive manner with confidentiality maintained throughout the process. ACTS3 does care and we will act to ensure matters are addressed.
A great first step would be to discuss your concerns with the person directly involved. If you don’t believe that has resolved things, then contact your Service manager. Matters of a serious nature will be sent to ACTS3 Management to investigate.
If you feel a complaint has not been adequately addressed, then contact us to find out other avenues/agencies you can contact.
Handling of Files and Storage of Information
ACTS3 is committed to ensuring that clients’ personal information is protected within privacy laws. ACTS3 will only collect information that is relevant and applicable to the Client Centred Plan / Care plan process and meeting the needs of the client.
Where requested, translated materials and interpreter services will be provided.
Disposal of personal information is carried out in a manner of which is in keeping of the privacy act. Clients are able to request at any time, assistance from a support person or advocate with the collection, storage, disposal and accessibility of their personal information in discussions with ACTS3.
It is the intention of ACTS3 to provide a safe working environment for both clients and workers. This policy also insures that when an incident occurs it is reported properly in line with ACTS3 service policy and state/federal legislation. ACTS3 aims to minimise incidents by documenting, reviewing and redressing the negative consequences of incidents.
ACTS3 considers an incident to be of concern if any person associated with services provided by ACTS3 is injured, put at risk or distressed.
If a staff member considers an incident to be of concern, he or she will:
Take immediate action to ensure the people involved are safe, calm and or receiving appropriate assistance
Inform the Manager as soon as possible and
Complete an Incident Report form within 3 day after the event.
Incident reports will allow ACTS3 to continuously review practices to ensure we are doing everything possible to maintain a safe working environment for all.
What is Manual Handling?
A significant proportion of support work involves manual handling. Manual handling is any task in which a person lifts pushes, pulls, carries, lowers or otherwise moves, holds or restrains any person or object.
Manual handling tasks disability support workers may perform in their role include:
Using equipment such as hoists;
Transfers of clients in and out of wheelchairs, from bed to chair, from chair to toilet etc.;
Pushing shower chairs and wheelchairs; and
Assisting clients to stand.
The main risks involved in manual handling tasks are:
Lifting and transferring the client inappropriately or not using the equipment provided correctly;
Twisting, stooping or using unsafe postures while moving clients or carrying loads;
Doing more lifts/transfers than necessary;
Repetitive movements eg in massage or exercise routines;
Lack of experience or skill in routines required;
Unpredictable movements due to spasms etc; and
Lack of communication between client and carer during transfers.
ACTS3 is committed to ensuring staff utilise best practice Manual Handling skills by providing ongoing training dependent on individual support needs, and implement annual mandatory training for our staff in Manual Handling.
Participation and Integration
One of the most important goals of ACTS3’s services is to provide clients with every opportunity to participate in community life.
Community inclusion helps clients gain:
Experiences necessary for normal growth and development that is not possible in isolated settings.
A range of social and personal relationships with other members of the community.
Greater levels of independence by using community facilities and services.
ACTS3 believes each individual should be supported in pursuing activities of their choice. This could involve working together with community groups to create opportunities for activities with other members of the community and to increase the friendship network of the client.
Quality and Continuous Improvement
ACTS3 is committed to ensuring we provide a high quality service that is responsive to the changing needs of our target population. ACTS3 participates in quality assurance processes to ensure that its services are of a high and improving standard.
The Quality system is part of ACTS3’s commitment and is based on:
Continuous improvement of our services as the basis of achieving our mission;
Input and involvement of our Clients in evaluation and improvement activities;
The need to involve and empower all ACTS3 staff and Clients in identifying and implementing quality improvements; and
Systematic use of qualitative and quantitative feedback as a basis for identifying and prioritising improvement opportunities.
The achievement of quality outcomes necessitates a commitment to quality procedures at all levels and by all members of ACTS3.
ACTS3 is committed to providing services to adults with disabilities in an environment that is free from the threat of harm, injury or maltreatment. This approach will focus on the least restrictive intervention for the management of behaviour. Extreme forms of restrictive practices are prohibited and must not be used under any circumstances. Containment, seclusion, chemical restraint, mechanical restraint, and restricting access to objects are all forms of Restrictive Practice.
All ACTS3 staff working with adults with disabilities are responsible for being familiar with and must follow the requirements of ACTS3’s Restrictive Practices Policy.
If your support requires the use of a restrictive practice, please discuss your support needs with your Service manager.
ACTS3 conducts risk assessments yearly (or more frequently if required) in order to identify, minimise or eliminate any potential risks for staff and/or Clients.
Disability Support workers also have a responsibility to report to the Service manager if they feel that they or the Clients is at risk of being injured during any tasks.
Where support is provided in the Clients home Service manager undertake home risk assessment with the Clients/Advocate/Nominated stakeholder in order to identify, minimise or eliminate any potential risk for staff and/ clients in the home.
Our goal is not to immediately eliminate any concerns, but rather to assess the likelihood of injury or harm occurring as a result of the identified risk. We actively work to seek solutions that minimise and manage risk to an appropriate level. Risks will only be eliminated if the significance of an identified risk necessitates this action.
Workplace Health and Safety
ACTS3 is committed to achieving and maintaining the highest practicable standards of workplace health and safety for its staff, clients, family members and visitors.
When staff go to a client’s home, the client’s home is a “workplace” for the staff person. ACTS3 will work with clients to ensure their home is a safe working environment for all staff.
ACTS3 accepts its responsibility to be aware of and enforce the provisions of all relevant Acts Regulations and ACTS3 Policy and Procedures as may be formulates within their areas of responsibility.