Former World Vision CEO leads Australian tech start-up increasing protection for vulnerable people from malpractice and abuse.

MELBOURNE, VICTORIA, 28 April 2021

Today, Oho, a purpose-led venture on a mission to better protect children and others from abuse, launched under the leadership of Claire Rogers, former CEO of World Vision Australia. A technology business, Oho enables organisations to continuously monitor accreditations – such as working with children checks – of their workers and volunteers.

Speaking at the launch, Chairperson, Daniel Muggeridge said: “Every Australian should ask the question, ‘how many times is it acceptable for a vulnerable person to be abused? When is it ever okay?’”

Every single case of abuse impacts, not just the victim, but hundreds of people around them, creating dramatic changes in their lives across a lifetime. Each individual protected represents a corresponding legacy.

Under the Australian Human Rights Commission’s National Principles for Child Safe Organisations, employers must ensure all members of their workforce – including paid staff, contractors and volunteers – are suitable and safe. Yet, without ongoing checks, most organisations cannot claim to be certain of this, even though there is a legal and public expectation that they should.

“Our research demonstrates that Australian families believe organisations are monitoring worker accreditations – such as working with children checks – as part of their responsibilities for children or other vulnerable people in their care. In reality, they are not. Common practice is to verify when onboarding staff, and then often only review annually, on expiry, or never again. Records are often kept in paper files or spreadsheets,” Mr. Muggeridge said.

“If a worker is de-registered for abuse or malpractice, their employer may not know in time, if ever. And available research suggests the majority of abusers strike more than once.”

Oho originated because a sexual abuse survivor wanted to change, to protect others. Developed in Australia from the ground up, it leverages the power of digital technology to automate monitoring and overcome the complexity of watching over multiple registrations for employees across different states and jurisdictions.

“Oho keeps watch, every week of every month, every year,” said CEO, Claire Rogers. “If a person is deregistered for a charge of abuse or malpractice the employer will know and can act immediately.”

Key features of the platform include: automatically and continuously verifying accreditations of employees and volunteers; rapid notification of expiry or revocation; enduring proof in an auditable digital record; and proactive compliance reporting to management and boards.

“Even if one person is saved from abuse, Oho will be successful. But Oho has the capacity to protect millions of Australians by using technology for good.” Ms. Rogers said.

For more information visit weareoho.com

Media Contact:

Bronwen Lane-Hassett
E: bronwen@ellisjones.com.au
T: +61 413 221 252

Oho:

Oho is a purpose-led Australian social venture, established to meet the growing need for continuous monitoring of workers and volunteers who are responsible for vulnerable people. A cloud-based national verification platform continuously monitors and records the registration status of people required to have verified credentials as a condition of their employment.