6.6 Special protections for the Assessment Framework Policy Guidelines
The Assessment Framework Policy Guidelines (the Guidelines) contains information the Scheme will use when assessing an application and determining the amount of redress a person may be eligible to receive. Unauthorised access to the Guidelines may increase the risk of fraudulent applications attempting to maximise the potential redress payments received. The information contained in the Guidelines is sensitive and includes graphic descriptions of the kinds of abuse which may need to be determined in an application.
Only an officer of the Scheme is permitted to access the Guidelines if they are required to for the purpose of the Scheme. This includes obtaining, making a record of, disclosing to another officer of the Scheme or using information contained in the Guidelines.
Disclosures by the Minister or Scheme
The Minister for Social Services or the Operator can disclose information from the Guidelines to another person. This person can themselves obtain, make a record, disclose to another person, or use the information. In both cases, the use and disclosure of information by any party is regulated by the conditions set out within the National Redress Scheme Agreement.
Offences relating to the Guidelines
The Guidelines are used by the Scheme when applying the NRS Assessment Framework towards determining the amount of redress a person may be able to receive. Special protections are required around the use and disclosure of the Guidelines due to the potential for fraud, and the sensitivity of the information it contains, including graphic descriptions and examples of abuse.
An offence is committed if the person obtains, makes a record of, discloses to another person, or uses information contained in the Guidelines, and they are not authorised to do so. The penalty is imprisonment for 2 years, 120 penalty units or both.
Act reference: NRSAct section 104 Offence-unauthorised recording, disclosure or use of assessment framework policy guidelines