The Department of Communities (Communities) is committed to providing information regarding COVID-19 and our services as it becomes available. Follow us on Facebook for regular updates.
Communities provides essential services to Western Australians and we want to reassure you that this will continue throughout the current lockdown period.
New safety measures are in place in response to the lockdown, which means there are some changes to the delivery of our essential services within the Perth metropolitan, Peel and South West areas only.
Our offices in all other regions not in the lockdown areas, will continue to operate as normal, with no changes to service delivery or practice (under existing COVID-19 precautions).
Communities clients can contact their regular contact person or local office as usual for any assistance relating to Communities’ services. Our general contacts page has accessible options for contacting us. We recommend that you continue to visit the COVID-19 page for Communities updates.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, please be assured that the Communities’ Child Protection and Family Support division continues to respond to child protection concerns, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
At a time when children may be less visible within our community, it is important for us all to remain vigilant and report to the appropriate authority any concerns we may have for the more vulnerable members of our society.
Should you have concerns for the wellbeing of a child, please contact the Central Intake Team on 1800 273 889 or email email@example.com.
To report a concern out of business hours, please contact our Crisis Care Unit on 1800 199 008.
Should you have concerns that are life threatening, please call 000.
The State Government is recommending, based on health advice, that child education and care services remain open. At the moment it is safe for children to attend education and care services in Western Australia, including out of school hours and vacation care programs.
The health, safety and welfare of children, families, educators and staff of education and care services continues to be a key focus for the Department of Communities.
Our Education and Care Regulatory Unit will continue to work closely with the WA Department of Health, other state and territory governments and the Commonwealth Government to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the education and care sector.
The following documents provide a range of information and resources may support your service to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.
Maintaining a contact register is an extra safety measure and one of the most effective ways to control the spread of COVID-19. Mandatory contact registers have been expanded to keep Western Australians safe. Visit the WA Government’s website for the latest information and advice about contact registers and how they affect patrons and businesses.
A safe and secure contact register system, SafeWA, has been developed by the State Government to make it easy for venue operators and patrons to easily register their attendance at relevant businesses and venues. The app is available to download for free from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
Alternative formats including other electronic or paper-based systems may also be used by the venue.
If you are in lockdown or in any form of isolation or quarantine for COVID-19, you must do whatever you need to do to protect your life. Protecting yourself and your family from the immediate danger of the bushfire is first and foremost.
People in fire affected areas are permitted to go to suitable premises without putting others at risk. These premises may include a friend or relative's house, provided the evacuee has access to their own bedroom, preferably own bathroom, and there are not too many people already residing in the house.
Evacuees must be able to present for COVID testing and receive food and medication delivery.
If an evacuee is unable to identify a suitable premises, they should go to the evacuation centre wearing their personal protective equipment (PPE) such as face masks, and clearly identify to staff that they are subject to isolation or quarantine prior to entering the evacuation centre. Physical distancing and PPE must be maintained at all times.
A list of available evacuation centres can be found at emergency.wa.gov.au (click the relevant bushfire warning on the left panel and scroll through the information in the pop-up). Official emergency information, including lists of evacuation centres, is also available through the Department of Fire and Emergency Services WA Facebook page.
Department of Communities representatives are in attendance at the evacuation centres to provide support.
A contact register system will be in place at emergency evacuation centres for all attendees.
The COVID-19 information helpline is available to keep communities informed.
As well as hearing important COVID-19 prevention tips, callers are given a range of options directing them to the relevant sources of information for their needs. In terms of health, this includes information for people experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, those in self-isolation or calling as health practitioners.
People who have been placed under home isolation or quarantine as a result of COVID-19 and who require welfare support can call the information helpline.
Dial 13COVID (13 26 843)
The helpline operates from 8am to 6pm, Monday to Friday.
Information for the community services sector, including details for ordering mask supplies for staff and clients, can be found on the Community Sector Partnerships (COVID-19) page (see “Messages to the sector”).
A daily update on COVID-19 and case numbers can be found on the Department of Health website. This page contains information about the number of confirmed cases within Australia and around the world, as well as case details.
For the latest information and advice on COVID-19, visit the following websites:
Under the State Emergency Welfare Plan, Communities has primary responsibility for coordinating the provision of emergency welfare services across Western Australia.