ACT Senior Practitioner

ACT Senior Practitioner Fact Sheet

From 1 September 2018, the Senior Practitioner Act 2018 (the Act) provides a formal framework for the reduction and elimination of restrictive practices by service providers in the ACT. It also provides the powers and functions of the Senior Practitioner.

The Act enshrines the principle that service providers should only use restrictive practices in very limited circumstances – as a last resort, in the least restrictive way and for the shortest period possible in the circumstances.

The intent of the legislation is not to enable the use of restrictive practices, it is to provide a formal framework for the reduction and elimination of restrictive practices in the ACT.

Mandy Donley has been appointed as the ACT’s inaugural Senior Practitioner, commencing in the role on 5 July 2018.

The leadership and oversight of the Senior Practitioner will help to improve the lives of all people who are vulnerable and potentially subject to restrictive practices. The Act will also enable the ACT to meet its commitments under the National Framework for Reducing and Eliminating the Use of Restrictive Practices in the Disability Sector and the NDIS Quality and Safeguarding FrameworkExternal link

The Act regulate the use of restrictive practices by persons or other entities who provide any of the following services to another person:

  • education;
  • disability;
  • care and protection of children.

For more information about Act, including the functions and powers of the Senior Practitioner, please refer to the Fact Sheet on this page.

Reporting on restrictive practices

The functions and powers of the Senior Practitioner will be supported by the collection and reporting of key data on the use of restrictive practices over time.

Under the Act, service providers must report all uses of a restrictive practice to the Senior Practitioner, whether there is a positive behaviour support plan in place for the person or not.

If you are a service provider and would like to report the use of a restrictive practice, please contact the Senior Practitioner on telephone, (02) 6205 2811, or email

Information sessions

The Senior Practitioner, in partnership with the ACT Human Rights Commission, is presenting a series of information sessions for disability, education and out-of-home care providers.

Attendees will have opportunity to hear more about the role of the Senior Practitioner and whole-of-government approach to reducing and eliminating restrictive practices, and reporting requirements.

These sessions are free of charge, but bookings are required via the Eventbrite website, at link

Next steps

Updates and further information, including guidelines to operationalise the Senior Practitioner’s role, will be posted to this website over coming months.

In the meantime, all enquiries and feedback can be emailed to

Senior Practitioner Seminar Series – 2 November 2018

The inaugural ACT Senior Practitioner Seminar Series event will be held in Belconnen on 2 November 2018.

The seminar will showcase evidence based practice across service settings for the reduction and elimination of restrictive practice.

Topics will include:

  • ACT transition to National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) quality and safeguards (Presented by Dr Jeffrey Chan, National Senior Practitioner and Donna White, Assistant Director Behaviour Support, NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission)
  • Eleven years of research in Victoria (Presented by Dr Frank Lambrick, Senior Practitioner, Victoria)
  • Restraint-free environments (Presented by Associate Professor Paul Ramcharan, RMIT )
  • Lessons from the past for the future - a journey from restriction to participation (Presented by Charley Hodgson, Acting Senior Practitioner - Disability, Tasmania)
  • Reducing restrictive practice in care and protection of children (Presented by Jodie Griffiths-Cook, Public Advocate and Children and Young People Commissioner for the ACT)
  • Queensland Centre of Excellence (Presented by Professor Karen Nankervis, Chair of the Centre of Excellence for Clinical Innovation and Behaviour Support and Executive Director, Disability Practice and Service Improvement)
  • Evidence-based approaches for reducing and eliminating restrictive practices (Presented by Sharon Paley, Manager in State Operations, Queensland Department of Education)
  • Reducing restraint in schools (Presented by Dr Shiralee Poed, Senior Lecturer, Melbourne Graduate School of Education)

This event is being offered free of charge, but places are strictly limited.

Please register your attendance via Eventbrite, at link

There are five sessions, which much be booked separately. You can book into as many or as few sessions as you like, subject to availability.

Feel free to circulate the attached flyer to your own networks.