Child abuse and neglect: a socio-legal study of mandatory reporting in Australia (report prepared for the South Australian government)

Child abuse Child welfare Child sexual abuse Child protection Child neglect Mandatory reporting South Australia Australia
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This report for the South Australia Department for Education and Child Development is volume 6 of 'Child Abuse And Neglect: A Socio-legal Study of Mandatory Reporting in Australia'.

This study aims to explore trends in the reporting of child abuse and neglect by different reporter groups in every Australian state and territory, in the context of their relevant jurisdictional legislation.

In 2012, the then Standing Council on Community and Disability Services (SCCDS) identified that the investigation of the effectiveness of Mandatory Reporting legislation in jurisdictions was a priority under the Second Action Plan (2012-2015) of the National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children 2009-2020.

This report is for government policy makers at all levels, researchers, service providers and interested stakeholders.

The contracted research project required the researchers to explore, using legal research and quantitative analysis of state and territory child protection data for the period 2003-12, the reporting by different reporter groups of different types of suspected child abuse and neglect (physical abuse, sexual abuse, psychological or emotional abuse, and neglect), and the outcomes of those reports. The research project is not aimed at exploring reports by mandated or non-mandated reporters of family support issues or low-level child welfare issues, which are normally termed ‘child concern reports’.

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