About the Victorian Fair Jobs Code for the Community Services Sector

The Victorian Government released a Fair Jobs Code for the Community Services sector.

The Victorian Government has released the Fair Jobs Code for the community services sector (the CS Code). Community services organisations (CSOs) that receive significant Victorian Government funding may be required to follow the code as a condition of that funding.

Community services workers are doing important work to deliver critical services for Victorians. To meet Victoria’s needs, community services must attract and keep skilled workers through safe, secure and rewarding jobs. The CS Code is based on a shared commitment between government and the sector to grow and support this critical workforce.

The CS Code is part of the Victorian Government’s broader commitment to recognise good employers in the organisations it works with.

The government will work with the sector to help organisations understand the CS Code and support them to meet their obligations.

About the CS Code

The CS Code is a series of standards relating to:

  1. compliance with applicable workplace obligations;
  2. promoting secure employment and job security;
  3. fostering cooperative relationships between employers, employees and their representatives; and
  4. promoting workplace equity and diversity.

CSOs that receive significant Victorian Government funding may be required to comply with the code as a condition of that funding.

The CS Code sits beside the Fair Jobs Code for high-value government procurements that commenced in December 2022. A Fair Jobs Code developed specifically for community services will better respond to the unique needs of the sector. Workers who are covered by this code will not be subject to the Fair Jobs Code for high-value government procurements.

Who is covered by the CS Code?

Organisations who receive more than $2 million per year in Victorian government funding (from any Department) to deliver community services, will need to comply with the CS Code.

Services that are covered by the CS Code include but are not limited to:

  • social and community housing and homelessness services 
  • family violence and sexual assault services
  • child and family services, including out-of-home care services
  • disability services (only Victorian Government funded services would be within the scope of the code)
  • community-based mental health and alcohol and other drugs treatment services
  • rehabilitation and transition services for people in contact with the justice system
  • Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations that receive funding to provide any of the above services
  • industry associations or peak bodies representing these sectors.

Organisations not covered by the CS Code

The CS Code will not cover organisations who receive less than $2 million per year in Victorian Government funding to deliver community services.

It will also not apply to:

  • organisations that are not a community services organisation such as local government, public hospitals, health promotion agencies, and/or schools 
  • services that are not community services such as early child education and care, school education or acute healthcare
  • workforces that do not deliver community services such as teachers and health care professionals (doctors, nurses and allied health practitioners).

How will the CS Code work for organisations?

Complying with the CS Code will be a condition of Victorian Government funding. It will form part of organisations’ requirements under its service agreement.

The Departments of Families, Fairness and Housing, Health and Justice & Community Safety will monitor compliance with the code through existing funding and performance monitoring frameworks. This may include investigating or taking compliance action in relation to a breach of the code.

The response to any breaches will depend on the nature, severity and frequency of the breach. The impact of compliance action on the provision of services will also be considered.

The CS Code also includes a voluntary dispute resolution process for employers, employees and unions. This process will be separate from and will not detract from their rights under: 

  • existing awards
  • enterprise agreements
  • the Fair Work System. 

If there are disputes about matters under the CS Code that are not dealt with by other industrial instruments, this process will be available to resolve the dispute (if both parties consent).

Important dates 

The CS Code will come into effect in August 2024.

CS Code Timeline

September 2023 – June 2024 The Victorian Government will share information and resources to make sure organisations understand their obligations under the CS Code.
October 2023 – June 2024The Victorian Government will finalise changes to agency performance management arrangements to implement the CS Code.
August 2024The CS Code comes into effect and all included organisations will need to comply with the CS Code.

Read the CS Code

Further resources

Contact us

For questions about the CS Code email: CSCode@dffh.vic.gov.au.