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Report

National framework for protecting Australia's children 2021-2031: successor plan consultation report

Publisher
First Peoples child protection Child welfare First Peoples families Australia
Description

From late March 2021 until the end of April 2021, SNAICC – National Voice for our Children conducted a series of national consultations to guide the co-design of the successor framework to the National framework for protecting Australia’s children (Department of Social Services 2009).

Consultations took various forms, including jurisdictional knowledge circles with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples; invited written submissions from key experts, including Aboriginal community-controlled organisations (ACCOs) and non-Indigenous organisations; as well as surveys open to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous peoples with a vested interest in child protection issues that impact Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, families, and communities.

This report presents the findings from the various consultations in the following order:

  1. Knowledge circles results (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander knowledge holders only).
  2. Quantitative survey results (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous respondents).
  3. Qualitative survey results (Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander respondents only).
  4. Written submissions summary (submissions received from non-Indigenous parties only).

Key findings:

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples expressed continued frustration at a perceived lack of political will to implement actions to rectify child protection over-representation, such as the recommendations of previous government inquiries.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were highly concerned about a lack of government accountability and transparency across all levels of government around child protection issues, including resourcing and investment.
  • There were concerns that the child protection system is too punitive and not supportive enough to effectively support families to keep their children or have them reunified. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples expressed a lack of trust in both child protection personnel and government more broadly, lamenting that systemic racism and interventions based on Western middle-class normative parenting standards were greatly contributing to the over-representation crisis.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples were concerned about the implementation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle (ATSICPP).
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