Victims Services

Victims Access Line 1800 633 063, Aboriginal Contact Line 1800 019 123 (Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm)

Apply to become a witness intermediary

Expressions of interest are now open for the NSW witness intermediary panel

Applications close 29 February 2024.

Victims Services is seeking expressions of interest to join the NSW panel of witness intermediaries. 

Witness intermediaries assess and facilitate effective communication for child victims and witnesses of prescribed sexual offences during police interviews and court proceedings.

Applicants must satisfy eligibility requirements, with qualifications and demonstrated experience in:

  • social work

  • psychology

  • occupational therapy

  • speech pathology

  • teaching.

Applications are strongly encouraged from eligible applicants located in or willing to travel to:

  • Albury
  • Ballina
  • Bourke
  • Broken Hill
  • Coffs Harbour
  • Dubbo
  • Griffith
  • Inverell
  • Narooma
  • Port Macquarie
  • Queanbeyan
  • Tamworth
  • Wollongong
  • Wagga Wagga

Witness intermediaries are paid a rate of $144 per hour, plus GST. The roles are on a contract basis.

Eligible applicants may be invited to attend an interview and be required to undertake compulsory assessments from 18 – 20 March 2024.

Successful applicants will undertake an induction program and further training.

Written applications are to be submitted by 29 February 2024.

Learn about the role of the role of a witness intermediary, what the eligibility requirements are and how to apply on this page.

Support for children and young people in prescribed sexual offence matters

Attending court or a police interview can be difficult for children and young people who are victims and witnesses in sexual offence matters. The Child Sexual Offence Evidence Program provides measures to support their communication needs, help them to give their best evidence and reduce the stress and trauma they may experience.

This includes:

  • pre-recording their evidence before trial, including evidence-in-chief, cross-examination and re-examination, which takes place before a judge and legal representatives, with no jury present
  • providing witness intermediaries to assist their communication needs during police interviews and at court.

Witness intermediaries have been piloted in specific locations since 2016.  Witness intermediaries can now be utilised at all NSW Police Child Abuse Units and District Courts. 

Witness intermediaries play a crucial role by assisting in the effective communication with children and young people throughout the legal process.

Visit the Child Sexual Offence Evidence Program to learn more.

About the role of a witness intermediary

The role of the witness intermediary is to assist child witnesses in criminal investigations and court proceedings by assessing and facilitating communication. Witness intermediaries are impartial. They are not expert witnesses, advocates or a support person. 

Witness intermediaries are required to attend at NSW Police Child Abuse Unit locations, NSW District Courts for hearings and other locations in person, as well as remotely or online as required.

Witness intermediaries assess the communication abilities of children and make recommendations verbally and in written reports to police and courts on how to best support the child’s communication needs. This includes ensuring that:

  • the child or young person understands the questions put to them

  • the child or young person can communicate their answers effectively

  • the language used is appropriate for the child or young person’s developmental or communication needs.

Due to the nature of witness intermediary service provision, the role would best suit professionals who can work under pressure and who are flexible to attend matters with limited notice.  Work is allocated on an as-needed basis, with no guarantee of ongoing work.  

Witness intermediaries hear information about alleged sexual offences and other trauma related content. Candidates should consider this when making an application.

Why join the witness intermediary panel?

Being a witness intermediary is challenging yet rewarding. It’s an opportunity to make a meaningful impact for vulnerable children and young people, and to improve their experience within the criminal justice system.

Attending court or a police interview can be difficult for children and young people, and the expertise a witness intermediary offers can help to reduce the stress and trauma they may experience.

Witness intermediaries are engaged on a contract basis and paid an hourly rate. When applying, you can nominate your available days and times, with work allocated on an as-needs basis.

Successful applicants will undertake induction and further training specific to the role, enhancing their skills and professional development.  

Eligibility requirements

To be eligible for inclusion on the NSW witness intermediary panel, applicants must hold and maintain at their own cost:

  • a tertiary qualification in psychology, social work, speech pathology, teaching or occupational therapy
  • registration with, or membership of (as appropriate to the profession), the professional association relevant to their qualification:

    • Psychologists and occupational therapists who have full unrestricted registration with the Australian Health Practitioners Registration Agency.
    • Social workers who are a member of the Australian Association of Social Workers.
    • Speech pathologists who are a member of Speech Pathology Australia with a Practising Membership grade.
    • Teachers who are accredited by NSW Education Standards Authority Accreditation and possess full accreditation.
  • a current Working with Children Check and National Police Check.

Required skills and experience

Applicants must also demonstrate:

  • a minimum of 3 years experience working with children and young people with communication and/or developmental needs including provision of assessment
  • excellent written communication skills, particularly report writing
  • strong interpersonal skills and emotional resilience
  • access to technology with the capacity to attend online interviews.

How to apply

Applications are to be sent by email to csoep@justice.nsw.gov.au by 29 February 2024.

To be considered for inclusion on the witness intermediary panel, applicants must provide:

  • a completed application form (PDF, 315.1 KB) (PDF, 283 KB)
  • a covering letter addressing all eligibility requirements (no more than 2 pages)
  • a current curriculum vitae or resume that includes:
    • applicable work experience 
      • specialist training
      • tertiary qualifications 
  • evidence of relevant professional registration or membership
  • evidence of a current Working with Children Check and a National Police Check completed in the past 12 months
  • two written references. Each reference must include comments from the referee on the credibility, professional experience and reputation of the applicant, as well as the eligibility requirements and the referee’s contact details.
If your application is successful

Successful applicants will be required to hold and maintain:

  • professional indemnity insurance in the amount of at least $2,000,000 and for at least 12 months following the end of your term as a panel member
  • public liability insurance in an amount required to cover your liability in relation to the Services
  • any insurance required by law including, but not limited to, workers compensation insurance in the amount required to cover liability for loss, damages, claims and all direct or associated costs and expenses arising at common law and workers compensation legislation
  • an Australian Business Number (ABN) registration, as required under the A New Tax System (Australian Business Number) Act 1999. 
Next steps for eligible applicants

Applicants who meet the eligibility requirements may be:

  • contacted for an interview
  • invited to attend a compulsory 3-day assessment centre on 18-20 March 2024, which will include assessment tasks.

Successful applicants will undertake induction and further training.

Contact us for further information

For more information, please contact Victims Services by telephone on 1800 633 063 (option 6) or email csoep@justice.nsw.gov.au

Last updated:

21 Feb 2024

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