Vaccination Requirements

What is Scouts Victoria’s Vaccination Policy?

Scouts Australia has had a Vaccination Policy for a number of years (since before the COVID pandemic) that was updated in October 2021. The key aspects that have traditionally been part of Scouts Victoria’s approach to vaccination are:

  • Vaccination is strongly encouraged, and Scouts Victoria aims to promote a general policy of proactive advocacy
  • Scouts’ policy is not to exclude unvaccinated members from membership, but it is important we are all aware of the risks
  • However, should unvaccinated members be excluded from contact with others due to Public Health directions, we will not allow exemptions from the Public Health directions.

Public Health directions now require people to be vaccinated to participate in some aspects of face-to-face Scouting and for Scouts Victoria to hold the vaccination status of volunteer workers.

Link to the Scouts Australia Vaccination Policy.

How does the Victorian Government vaccination mandate affect me?

Refer to the How Does the Vaccination Mandate Affect…? FAQ.

How will Scouts Victoria record and hold the vaccination status of Leaders or other workers?

Scouts Victoria has contacted all registered volunteers to request information on their COVID-19 vaccination status. We are using Operoo (previously Care Monkey) to collect this information, so that volunteers will have visibility of their personal vaccination data that Scouts Victoria is holding.

Individuals can resubmit their Operoo e-form at any time if their vaccination status changes.

Scouts Victoria will ask members to confirm their status and that they are in possession of the relevant documentation.

The Public Health and Wellbeing Act has significant penalties for individuals and organisations who fail to comply with the Pandemic COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination (Specified Workers) Orders or give false or misleading information.

Scouts Victoria will monitor the responses from individuals and will contact those whose vaccination status is unknown. or who do not meet the required vaccination levels by the required dates, to ensure they are aware that they cannot undertake face-to-face Scouting.

Registered Leaders and helpers, etc who have not responded to the Operoo request must be treated as unvaccinated and are unable to undertake face-to-face Scouting.

Group Leaders should be aware of the vaccination status of their members and support them to continue with Scouting online if necessary.

How will Scouts Victoria record and hold the vaccination status of youth members?

Scouts Victoria are no longer required to record or hold the vaccination status of youth members aged under 18 years.

How will groups verify vaccination status?

Anybody aged under 18 years doesn’t need to demonstrate their vaccination status.

For other attendees at a Scouting activity, vaccination status can be demonstrated using:

  • COVID-19 digital certificate linked to the QR Code check-in showing that they are fully vaccinated
  • Printed copy of COVID-19 digital certificate
  • Printed copy of Immunisation history statement
  • COVID-19 digital certificate (electronic or printed) that confirms they have a medical contraindication or an acute illness that prevents them from receiving a vaccine
  • Printed copy of their Immunisation history statement showing that they have a medical contraindication or an acute illness that prevents them from receiving a vaccine,

The Coronavirus Victoria website has a poster that indicates the valid ways that somebody can demonstrate their Vaccination Status or that they have a Medical Exemption Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination Status

From November 12, 2021 a certificate signed by a medical practitioner is no longer valid for demonstrating a medical exemption. The medical exemption must be recorded on the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) and evidence provided using a COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate or immunisation history.

The Coronavirus Victoria website provides further details on checking vaccination status of “customers” or “patrons” using QR Code, or printed copies of certificates.
How to check the vaccination status of your customers | Coronavirus Victoria

For hall hires, if the hall hirer is an organisation who has to comply with the pandemic orders in their own right, the responsibility should be delegated to them to provide a COVID Check-in Marshal who should also check that everybody aged 18 years or over is fully vaccinated, unless it is an essential public support service.

For private hall hires, where the hirer has exclusive use of the hall, there should be an acknowledgement between the Group and the hirer that everybody will check-in using the hall QR Code and that those aged 18 years or over are fully vaccinated or have a medical exemption. It is not the responsibility of Scouts Victoria to check the vaccination status of private hall hirers as long as there are no other groups in attendance.

We are not required to record and hold the vaccination status of visitors, just to confirm their status on entry. For privacy reasons we cannot store copies of an individual’s actual vaccination documents unless it is for a pre-registered event, refer to Privacy question below.

How can we access information about the vaccination status of members in Operoo?

Group Leaders will have access to the vaccination status of their Leaders and youth members aged 18 years or over through their Operoo records. Group Leaders, District Commissioners and Regional Commissioners also have access to vaccination status through Extranet on the Group Information page.

Vaccination status is private information and should only be accessed by those with a valid purpose. It is not necessary for leaders (e.g. section leaders, activity leaders, etc) to access the vaccination status of other leaders unless they are their Formation leader.

An individual can access the information that Scouts Victoria holds about their own vaccination status through Operoo.

Where a youth member chooses not to store their vaccination status information in Operoo, they will need to prove their vaccination status at each meeting.

What authority does Scouts Victoria have to request vaccination status?

Scouts Victoria is authorised under the Pandemic Mandatory Vaccination (Specified Workers) Order and Pandemic Open Premises Order to request the vaccination status of workers and visitors and to maintain a record of worker’s vaccination status.

A person is not obliged to provide their vaccination status, but if they choose to withhold their status, organisations must assume that the person is unvaccinated and must take reasonable steps to prevent the person from entering the premises or prevent a worker from working for the organisation outside the home.

What privacy issues does Scouts Victoria have to consider when recording and holding vaccination status information?

When we store information relating to vaccination status, the following privacy requirements apply:

  • The information regarding a person’s vaccination status is collected to comply with the Pandemic COVID-19 Mandatory Vaccination (Workers) Order and Pandemic Open Premises Order, made under the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008.
  • We may share all or part of this information with the State of Victoria including government departments and agencies to confirm compliance with pandemic orders.
  • This information must be provided by all paid and unpaid workers leaving home to undertake work with Scouts Victoria, and all persons aged 18 years or over entering a premises covered under the pandemic orders.
  • All details must be recorded and securely kept for the duration necessary to confirm compliance with pandemic orders.
  • Personal or health information relating to vaccination status that is collected, used, managed, stored, disclosed, or transferred will be in accordance with relevant Federal (Privacy Act 1988) and Victorian (Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014, Health Records Act 2001) legislation.
    This includes informing workers about why their COVID-19 vaccination status is being collected, collecting only the minimum amount of information required, disclosing the information on only a ‘need-to-know’ basis, only storing the information for the duration necessary to confirm compliance with pandemic orders and taking reasonable steps to keep the information secure.

If you have any questions about how your personal information will be handled or would like to gain access to your personal information, you can contact ourduty@scoutsvictoria.com.au

How can we ask further questions regarding Scouts Victoria’s approach to vaccination?

Please contact ourduty@scoutsvictoria.com.au if you have any questions regarding vaccination requirements.

For specific enquiries or advice about Scouts Victoria’s COVID response, continue to contact coronavirus@scoutsvictoria.com.au

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