Codes of Practice - Appendix 3: Rights and Responsibilities of Volunteers Example


This appendix is for guidance only and does not form part of the Community Radio Codes of Practice 2008.

This is an example of a policy that could be used to meet the requirements of Code 2.3.


[station name] is a community radio station, which relies largely on the efforts of our volunteers to maintain operations. Our volunteers come from a wide range of backgrounds and volunteer for different reasons, including:

  • to contribute something to the community,
  • to develop professional skills,
  • to maintain existing skills,
  • to enjoy the social nature of the organisation,
  • to facilitate personal growth.

We aim to treat all of our volunteers equally, with respect and trust, and to provide a workplace that is safe, enjoyable and fulfilling. We will endeavour to provide a working environment that is flexible in order to allow our volunteers to gain the benefits they wish from volunteering.

Conversely, we expect our volunteers to act professionally and in good faith towards our station at all times. We expect that they hold the interests of our station and its community in equal regard to their own to ensure positive outcomes for themselves, our station and the community we serve.


This document sets out [Station Name’s] policy on the responsible management of our volunteer program.

The policy’s purpose is to provide a clear statement about the roles and responsibilities of volunteers and our station.

Principles of Volunteering


  • benefits the community and the volunteer,
  • is always a matter of choice,
  • is an activity that is unpaid and not undertaken for the receipt of salary, pension, government allowance or honorarium,
  • is a legitimate way in which citizens can participate in the activities of their community,
  • is a vehicle for individuals or groups to address human, environmental and social needs,
  • does not replace paid workers nor constitute a threat to the job security of paid workers,
  • respects the rights, dignity and culture of others,
  • promotes human rights and equality.

The rights and responsibilities of volunteers

The rights of volunteers at [station name]. You have the right to:

  • be treated as a co-worker,
  • suitable assignment with consideration for personal preference, temperament, abilities, education, training and employment,
  • know as much about the organisation as possible, its policies, people and programs
  • expect clear and open communication from management and staff at all times,
  • be given appropriate orientation, introduction and provision of information about new developments,
  • sound guidance and direction in the workplace,
  • advance notice (where possible) of changes which may affect your work (such as programming changes),
  • undertake your volunteer activity without interruption or interference from management, staff or other volunteers,
  • a place of work complying with statutory requirements in regard to equal employment, anti-discrimination legislation, the Commonwealth Racial Discrimination Act 1975 and occupational health and safety standards,
  • be heard, to feel free to make suggestions and to be given respect for your honest and constructive opinion,
  • appropriate insurance cover such as volunteer and public liability insurance,
  • appropriate grievance procedures in the event of a dispute and, if necessary, mediation or arbitration to assist with resolving the dispute,
  • receive written notification and reasons for suspension/release of services,
  • have services appropriately assessed and effectively recognised,
  • have training provided that will enable participation at the station at a variety of levels.

The responsibilities of volunteers at [station name]

You have the responsibility to:

  • have a professional attitude towards your voluntary work,
  • be prompt, reliable and productive with regard to commitments and agreements made with [station name],
  • notify the appropriate person if unable to meet commitments,
  • accept and abide by station rules,
  • understand and adhere to the Codes and maintain familiarity with broadcast laws such as defamation law and the Broadcast Services Act 1992
  • not to represent [station name] publicly or commercially unless prior arrangement has been made,
  • not to bring into disrepute the operations, management, staff or other volunteers of [station name],
  • treat technical equipment with due care and respect and to notify technical staff of faults and problems,
  • undertake to complete a minimum of the basic level of training offered at the station if you are intending to work in any area of programming,
  • only use station resources and equipment in carrying out work for [station name] and not for personal or private purposes,
  • ensure that the station has your current contact details,
  • respect the racial and religious backgrounds and the sexual preferences of your co-volunteer workers and work to ensure that [station name] is a safe work place for everyone,
  • contribute to the achievement of a safe, tolerant and equitable working environment by avoiding, and assisting in preventing, behaviour which is discriminatory.

The rights and responsibilities of [station name] towards volunteers

[station name] has the right to:

  • expect your cooperation in working to uphold and maintain the station’s mission statement, the station charter and program policies,
  • expect you to be familiar with the laws relating to broadcasting, station policies and procedures,
  • expect you to be prompt, reliable and productive with regard to commitments and agreements made with [station name],
  • have confidential information respected,
  • make a decision, in consultation with you, as to where your services and skills would best be utilized,
  • make decisions which may affect your work,
  • make programming decisions in accordance with programming policies and procedures,
  • develop, implement and enforce rules, policies and procedures for all aspects of station operation,
  • develop and maintain all property and residence of the station,
  • provide you with feedback to enhance your programming and broadcasting development,
  • expect clear and open communication from you at all times,
  • suspend or dismiss you in accordance with station policies and procedures due to contravention of station rules.

[station name] has the responsibility to:

  • provide you with a work environment which embraces the principles of access and equity.
  • value the importance of your role within the organization,
  • place you in an appropriate, suitable position and environment,
  • give you appropriate tasks in accordance with your strengths, abilities, training and experience,
  • provide you with training so that you can expand your expertise and abilities,
  • acknowledge your contribution to the station and provide you with the appropriate recognition and/or rewards,
  • ensure staff have the appropriate skills required to work with you,
  • provide adequate opportunities for formal and informal constructive feedback,
  • provide you with information regarding any activities or changes at the station which may affect your work,
  • consult with you (where possible and practicable) on issues that may affect your work,
  • ensure that all station democratic processes are adhered to and that you are consulted in major decision-making processes,
  • ensure that you are aware of station democratic processes and are encouraged to participate in them.