Who are community visitors?
Community visitors are volunteers who have legal powers to visit you at the property. Their job is to make sure you are being cared for and supported with dignity and respect. You can also tell them about any issues or concerns you have.
If you have an SDA residency agreement, community visitors can visit you at any time, with or without notice.
If you signed a Residential tenancy agreement, community visitors can only visit you if you ask them to.
What can community visitors do?
During their visit, community visitors can:
- talk to you
- look around the property
- ask you about the services you and other residents are getting
- inspect documents about you and other residents. They must get your permission (or your support person’s permission) before looking at your medical records.
They can also make sure:
- the property is appropriate for your needs
- you are getting enough opportunities to be involved and take part in the community
- your SDA provider is following all the laws
- you are not being abused or neglected
- any complaints you make are investigated.
How can I get a community visitor to the property?
You can ask your provider or support person to invite a community visitor to the property at any time.
Once you or your support person asks for a community visitor, your provider must arrange it within 72 hours. They can do this by contacting the Office of the Public Advocate (OPA).
A community visitor should visit you within seven days. The OPA will contact you if this is not possible.
You can also arrange for a community visitor yourself. For more information, contact the OPA’s Community Visitors Board on 1300 309 337; or, visit OPA.