Family Matters – Strong communities. Strong culture. Stronger children is Australia’s national campaign to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people grow up safe and cared for in family, community and culture. Family Matters aims to eliminate the overrepresentation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in out-of-home care within a generation, by 2040.
Family Matters reports focus on what governments are doing to turn the tide on over-representation and the outcomes for children. They also highlight Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander-led solutions and call on governments to support and invest in the strengths of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples to lead on child wellbeing, development and safety responses for our children.
The reports contribute to efforts to change the story by explaining the extent of the challenges, reporting on progress towards implementing evidence-informed solutions, and profiling promising policy and practice initiatives.
This year’s Family Matters report is the second to be published following the development of the new National Agreement on Closing the Gap (the National Agreement), which was entered into in July 2020. Under the National Agreement, governments across the country committed to make decisions in genuine partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and organisations; to invest in our community-controlled services; to transform government agencies and nonIndigenous services into culturally safe organisations; and to develop data and monitor outcomes in partnership with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. The National Agreement also committed specifically to reducing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children’s over-representation in out-of-home care by 45% by the year 2031, a target well-aligned to the Family Matters campaign’s call to eliminate overrepresentation by 2040.
- Part 1: Current data and trends in over-representation in out-of-home care.
- Part 2: Recent efforts to address the overrepresentation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in out-of-home-care.
- Part 3: Structural drivers and service inadequacies that contribute to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children encountering the child protection system.
- Part 4: Self-determination, cultural authority and connection to culture.