Delivering quality services to children and families through a capable, motivated workforce and client-focused organisations - Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (Queensland Government)

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Delivering quality services to children and families through a capable, motivated workforce and client-focused organisations

Vulnerable children and families will receive quality services from a highly skilled, capable and professional workforce across government and non-government family and child sectors.

Improving court processes for child protection matters

Based on the recommendations of the Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry, the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services is improving court processes for child protection matters.

The department has established an Office of the Child and Family Official Solicitor (OCFOS) to provide early, independent legal advice to child safety workers about child protection matters, and work closely with staff in service centres to prepare applications for child protection orders.

While OCFOS will make applications for emergency and temporary orders to ensure a child’s immediate safety, the newly established Office of the Director of Child Protection Litigation - an independent statutory agency established within the Justice portfolio - will make applications for child protection orders, instead of the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services. In these matters, the OCFOS will operate as briefing partner to the Director of Child Protection Litigation.

This new approach aims to introduce a quicker timeframe to resolve matters and improve consistency across the state. Most importantly, children and young people will have a greater opportunity to present their views in court, if they wish to, and access legal representation for themselves and their families, when they need it.

Both offices are operational from 1 July 2016.

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Developing the child protection workforce

Queensland needs a highly skilled, professional workforce to support the safety, wellbeing and best interests of Queensland’s most at-risk children and families.

Child protection workers need to be appropriately qualified and specialised, have opportunities to effectively engage with families, and be supported to perform their roles.

To achieve this, the Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services has introduced new mandatory qualification requirements for all child safety roles. These requirements will apply to all new child safety officer applicants. Existing child safety officers and current applicants will not be affected.

The new requirements will strengthen the good practice that is already occurring while ensuring Queensland has a highly skilled, professional workforce able to support the safety, wellbeing and best interests of vulnerable children and families.

Qualification requirements

At a minimum, all new child safety officers must hold a bachelor degree from an accredited Australian tertiary institution. Overseas qualifications are only accepted if they are comparable to a relevant Australian qualification.

Further information about the new qualification requirements is available on the child safety officer careers page.

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Is your feedback

Please submit your comments on the department's Compliments and Complaints section.

Please submit your comments on the Queensland Government website Contacts form.