26 September 2023

Paper focused on child protection

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The Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women has released its final consultation paper on proposed changes to child protection laws in Queensland.

Under the paper, Rethinking rights and regulation: towards a stronger framework for protecting children and supporting families, the Department is seeking changes to the legislation to build a stronger framework for protecting children and supporting families.

In a statement it said that between July and September last year public consultation was held through targeted workshops, written submissions and surveys received through the Youth eHub for people under 25 and the Get Involved toolkit.

It said the Discussion Paper proposed options for changes to the legislation in three focus areas:

* Reinforcing children’s rights in the legislative framework

* Strengthening children’s voices in decisions that affect them

* Reshaping the regulation of care

“Through consultation, we heard about the importance of ensuring children are aware of their rights and how to exercise them, the need to actively listen to children and facilitate participation in a way that is appropriate to their needs, and the importance of ensuring carers and care services are supported to deliver the highest standard of care possible,” the Department said.

“The final consultation report provides more information about the outcomes of consultation,” it said.

“We are currently considering the results of consultation and how we can incorporate your feedback to support a stronger legislative, policy and practice framework for the child protection and family support system.”

In its report the Department said a key factor under consideration was the capacity of those already involved in the current care system to adapt to, and implement, any change.

It acknowledged this may require a staged implementation approach, with training and updates to policy and procedures of utmost importance.

As the outcomes of consultation are considered, information about possible amendments to the Act will be made available on the department’s website www.csyw.qld.gov.au.

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