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Blue card system statistics

The numbers behind the blue card system

The statistics on this page give you an idea of the scale of the blue card system.

We update these figures every month to show how many people we’ve screened, how many people and organisations we’re monitoring, and how many we’ve prevented from working with children.

Reporting – October 2019

Blue Card Services contributes to a safer and more secure Queensland for children through:

Screening

Blue card screening involves the application process and the blue card check.

We assess whether people are suitable to work with children based on their past behaviour.

Monitoring

We get updates from the Queensland Police Service  each day to let us know if there has been a change to an applicant or card holder’s police information.

Compliance

All organisations regulated by the blue card system must comply with their obligations under the systemWe help and educate them about these requirements so they can create a safe environment for children. If we identify a breach of these obligations, we will refer the matter to police.

Education & resources

We educate Queenslanders about how the blue card system works by building knowledge of their legal obligations, who needs a blue card to work with children and how organisations can create a safe environment for children.

Screening

Blue card screening involves  assessing  an individual’s eligibility to work with children based on their known police or disciplinary information. Individuals are prevented from working with children if their past behaviour indicates that they could be a risk to children and/or are unable to protect them from harm or promote their wellbeing.

The blue card system also disqualifies certain people  from applying for a blue card upfront (i.e. those convicted of a child-related sex or child pornography offence, or of the murder of a child).

October 2019
25,952

Year to date
90,708

Blue cards issued

The number of blue cards issued within the time period. Can be used to indicate the size of the system.

Average blue card processing time when no police information

We aim to process 85% of applications within 28 business days, where no further information was required and the person did not have any known police or disciplinary information.

Timely processing of standard applications ensures that services to children in regulated environments can continue uninterrupted while still mitigating risks to children.

October 2019
12 business days

Year to date
10 business days

October 2019
94.4%

Year to date
94.8%

Blue card applications with police information finalised within 4 months

We aim to process 90% of applications that return police or disciplinary information within 4 months.

This target allows some flexibility,  recognising that each case is unique and there is significant variation in complexity from case to case, including affording applicants natural justice by allowing them to make a submission supporting their eligibility.

Number of high-risk cases

Where individuals prohibited from working with children.

October 2019
253

Year to date
1,139

The number of cases where individuals with known high-risk police or disciplinary information have been prevented from working with children in regulated environments.

The safety of children in regulated service environments strengthened by preventing high-risk individuals from accessing children in these settings.

Monitoring

Unlike a one-off police check, the blue card system provides ongoing protection to Queensland’s children and young people through the daily monitoring of Queensland police information for all blue card applicants and cardholders. This is a critical component of the system, which enables us to take steps to protect children from harm if an individual is charged with offences relevant to their child-related employment.

As at 31 October 2019

779,353

Number of individuals monitored

Includes all blue card holders and applicants, and indicates the reach of this safeguard and extent of community participation in the blue card system.

Number of blue cards suspended or cancelled

The number of cases where individuals who represent a high risk are prevented from working with children because there is a change in their criminal history which is relevant to their child-related employment.

October 2019
68

Year to date
394

Compliance

Compliance with all requirements of the blue card system, including the requirement for organisations falling within the scope of the system to have a child and youth risk management strategy, is critical in building and maintaining safeguards for children and young people in regulated environments.

Where possible, our compliance activities focus on educating and building the capacity of organisations and individuals to help them achieve compliance and to identify and manage risks of harm to children. Compliance activities may include providing information about obligations under the system, reviewing an organisation’s child and youth risk management strategy or checking an organisation’s employee register to make sure all volunteers and staff who need blue cards both hold a valid card and are linked to the organisation.

Where we suspect or identify a serious breach that requires immediate escalation, or if our investigators engage with an individual or organisation, we refer matters to the police for investigation and possible prosecution.

Number of issues referred to compliance

October 2019
206

Year to date
1,157

The number of issues referred to our Compliance team for investigation and follow-up action.

Ensuring compliance with the blue card system is critical in building and maintaining safeguards for children and young people in regulated environments.

Each matter is unique and there is significant variation in complexity from case to case. Finalising a matter could include a number of outcomes (e.g. providing information about blue card system obligations, requesting an organisation’s child and youth risk management strategy and employee register, or referring the matter to the police).

Number of compliance checks of individuals

We conduct a range of proactive and reactive checks of individuals’ blue card and employment status. This could include checking an organisation’s employee register or doing one-off checks of individuals after receiving a complaint.

Where issues or breaches are identified, we work with the organisation until they are fully compliant. The volume of status checks made.

October 2019
393

Year to date
2,216

Number of matters referred to police

Individuals / organisations referred to police.

We refer matters to police for investigation and possible prosecution where compliance cannot be achieved through the initial educating of individuals or organisations, or where a potential serious breach is identified.

October 2019      30

Year to date      51

We work in partnership with the police to help reduce risks of harm to children and young people in regulated service environments by monitoring the compliance of organisations and individuals with the blue card system.

A police officer is co-located with Blue Card Services and is responsible for maintaining the integral link between the agencies.

We maintain a close working relationship with the police so that investigations and prosecutions are managed, suspended and cancelled blue cards are seized, and police information is reviewed for release to Blue Card Services.

Number of proactive employment status checks of high-risk cases

The safety of children in regulated service environments is strengthened by preventing high-risk individuals from accessing children in these settings.

The employment status of all high-risk cases is assessed and we proactively engage with identified organisations to confirm appropriate action has been taken to exclude the high-risk individuals from regulated employment.

October 2019
191

Year to date
905

Education and resources

Blue card system education helps individuals and organisations foster safer service environments by:

  • increasing knowledge of blue card system requirements and how they apply to their service environment
  • building the capacity of individuals and organisations to meet their legislative obligations, including risk management requirements
  • increasing understanding of who needs a blue card and how to apply.

October 2019
17

Engagements reaching
565 participants

Year to date
69

Engagements reaching
1,599
participants

Blue card community information and education engagement activities

Safeguards for children are strengthened by individuals and organisations working to identify and minimise risks of harm that may arise within their service environment and by complying with their blue card system obligations. This measure shows the number of targeted community engagement activities undertaken across Queensland.

October 2019
14,454

Year to date
54,824

Enquiries about the blue card system: over the phone

How many phone calls we received for the month.

We help the community understand the blue card system by answering enquiries and providing advice over the phone.

October 2019
3,108

Year to date
12,882

Enquiries about the blue card system: by email

How many email enquiries we received for the month.

We educate the community about blue card system obligations and requirements by responding to email enquiries.