The steps outlined below will assist workers to meet the obligation to provide the recognised entity with an opportunity to participate in the decision-making process.
At all times throughout the decision-making process, if it is not practicable to meet the above requirement because a recognised entity is not available or urgent action or intervention is required to protect the child, consult with the recognised entity as soon as practicable after the action or intervention.
Where a significant decision is made after hours by the CSAHSC, and consultation with the recognised entity is not possible at the time of the decision, the relevant CSSC or RIS is responsible for consulting with their local recognised entity on the next business day.
Table of contents:
Before making the decision:
- refer to, and comply with, available statewide and local protocols for working with recognised entities
- allow the recognised entity to have input into how they prefer to participate in the decision-making process
- provide the recognised entity with the relevant information, in a timely way, about the current situation, the decisions to be made and information required about the child and their family, relationships, community, culture, island and/or language group, strategies to communicate and engage with Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander children, families and communities and safe, compatible placement options
- provide the recognised entity with sufficient notice of meetings or other activities that require their involvement, to enable their full participation
- ensure that the recognised entity is given sufficient time to communicate with relevant community members to gather relevant information
- explore issues with the recognised entity when they express divergent views in relation to decision-making.
When the recognised entity has expressed divergent views, consult with the team leader about the views of the recognised entity prior to actioning the decision.
During the decision-making process:
- provide a respectful, culturally appropriate and supportive forum for decision-making and discussions with the recognised entity, that is respectful of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander protocols and traditions
- enable the recognised entity, where appropriate, to have input into the process in their preferred manner
- clarify the decisions to be made, and the roles and responsibilities of Child Safety in the process
- elicit the views of the recognised entity
- follow available Child Safety protocols for resolving differences with the recognised entity.
Following the decision:
- clarify the roles and responsibilities of Child Safety and the recognised entity
- ensure that when Child Safety does not follow the recommendation or advice of the recognised entity, a clear rationale is documented, and that this is communicated to the recognised entity.
For further information about working collaboratively with the recognised entity, refer to the practice resource Working with the recognised entity and the practice resource The child placement principle .