Child safety legislation reform - Child Safety Services, Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (Queensland Government)

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Child safety legislation reform

The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland

The Queensland Government is committed to building a new child protection and family support system that meets the needs of Queensland children, young people and families, now and into the future.

As part of the Supporting Families Changing Futures reform program, we have undertaken a comprehensive review of the Child Protection Act 1999.

Between September 2015 and March 2016, the department consulted with Queenslanders and insights were gathered through community forums, written submissions, meetings, focus groups and small group sessions. The initial consultation identified 13 specific areas for changing legislation, which formed the basis for the second stage of consultation.

The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Options paper (PDF, 525 KB) The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Options paper (RTF, 699 KB) proposed possible responses to the 13 specific areas identified during the initial consultation. Options also responded to outstanding recommendations in the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry final report.

Stage two of the consultation process ran from October to December 2016. Community members had an opportunity to participate through face-to-face discussions, workshops and written submissions.

Through these consultations we found that Queensland’s child protection legislation is generally operating well, however, priority amendments and opportunities for broad legislative reform were identified. See the The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Consultation Report (PDF, 392 KB) The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Consultation Report (DOCX, 309 KB).

The review continues the Queensland Government’s staged approach to reforming the Child Protection Act 1999 that commenced in 2014. Priority reforms arising from the review are being advanced in 2017, with further reforms arising from the review to be advanced in 2018.

On 9 August 2017, the Minister for Communities, Women and Youth, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence introduced the Child Protection Reform Amendment Bill 2017 into the Queensland Parliament. The Bill proposes important changes to Queensland’s child protection laws and progresses the priority reforms arising from the review.

Key proposed changes aim to achieve:

  • permanency and stability for children, now and throughout their lives, including support when they leave care;
  • the safe care and connection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children with their families, communities and cultures; and
  • a contemporary information sharing framework focused on children’s safety and wellbeing.

For more information on the proposed changes see The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Directions statement (PDF, 382 KB) The next chapter in child protection legislation for Queensland: Directions statement (DOCX, 59 KB).

The Bill has been referred to the Health, Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Committee for consideration. The committee is required to report back to Parliament by 28 September 2017. For further information on the Bill, the Committee process and how to make a written submission, please visit the Queensland Parliment wesbite.

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