*Please scroll down the bottom of this page to access all Office of the Senior Practitioner documentation.

Introduction

The Disability Services Act 2011 (the Act) describes the functions and powers of the Senior Practitioner.

The role of the Senior Practitioner is to advise the Secretary about the provision of specialist disability services and how services can be improved.

The position of the Senior Practitioner is appointed by the Secretary of the Department of Communities Tasmania and the Act requires the appointee to be a State Service officer and have appropriate qualifications and experience to fulfil the role.

The Disability Services Act 2011 is currently under review. If you would like more information please visit Communities Tasmania - Tasmanian Disability Services Act 2011 Review

Functions and Powers of the Senior Practitioner

The Senior Practitioner must provide an Annual Report to the Secretary which includes information about any restrictive interventions that have been approved.

The Senior Practitioner may delegate their functions and powers to other government employees to help them if needed.

They may also ask for any reasonable assistance from a disability services provider, an employee of the provider or a funded private person.

The Act allows for financial penalties against any disability service providers or private funded people who do not give reasonable assistance or "full and true answers" to questions asked by the Senior Practitioner.

Restrictive Interventions

The role of the Senior Practitioner in relation to restrictive interventions is to:

  • develop 'best practice' guidelines and standards
  • provide education and information
  • provide information as to the rights of people with disability
  • provide advice to the Secretary, the Guardianship and Administration Board, disability service providers and funded private people to improve practices
  • do research related to the use of restrictive interventions
  • monitor and evaluate the use of restrictive interventions.

Further information is available in the link to Fact Sheets at the end of this page.

Further information about Restrictive Interventions can be found on the RISET Tas link below.

Access practice resources and restrictive intervention information via RISET-TAS online:

RISET-Tas Link

Applying for a Restrictive Intervention

Applications for approval to use a Restrictive Intervention can only be written by a disability service provider or a funded private person and can be sent to the email address listed below.

Download the application form and guidelines from the link to Application Forms, Guidelines and Reporting below.

For more information on how to apply for an environmental restriction watch this short video.

Transcript for the Applying for a Restrictive Intervention video.

If you need any assistance completing the form, please contact the Office of the Senior Practitioner before sending the application.

Please note: The information contained in this document is provided as an initial guide only. It is not intended to be and is not a substitute for legal advice. Service providers should seek their own independent legal advice with reference to the implementation of the legislation.

Email completed forms to: seniorpractitionerdisability@communities.tas.gov.au

Powers to Investigate

The Senior Practitioner is able to visit any property of a funded service provider if there are concerns about the care and safety of the person with disability living at the property.

The Senior Practitioner is able to:

  • speak to a person who has a restrictive intervention
  • look at how the restrictive intervention is being used by the service provider or funded private person
  • look at why the restrictive intervention is being used by the service provider or funded private person.

The Senior Practitioner can make copies of documents and talk to any anyone involved in the use of a restrictive intervention.

The Senior Practitioner will report to the Secretary and provide recommendations.

The Senior Practitioner will also recommend to the Secretary the future plan to stop or reduce a restrictive practice or suggest other ways to support the person without the need to use restrictive practices.

The Act allows for financial penalties to be applied to any funded service providers or funded private persons who do not follow the directions given by the Secretary about restrictive practices.

How do I contact the Senior Practitioner?

Telephone: (03) 6166 3567

Mobile: 0428 197 474

Email: seniorpractitionerdisability@communities.tas.gov.au


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