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Flashcards in Family: Care and Protection of Children Deck (44):
1

INTRO What are non-legal responses to the care and protection of children??

INTRO Wood inquiry, keep them safe, OOHC via NGOs, The National Framework for protecting children Framework 2009-2020 (COAG), NSW Health, Family Referral Services, Child Wellbeing Units in Gov deps, (ATSI) NGOs

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INTRO What has happened to societal values towards the care and protection of children?

INTRO They have changed, there is an increased awareness regarding issues of child abuse and neglect. This awareness and concern has led to an array of legal an d non-legal child protection mechanisms

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INTRO What the issues to this state matter mainly governed by?

INTRO The Children and Young Persons (Care and protection) Act 1998 (NSW). There are federal acts as well as outlined by Australian Constitution.

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INTRO Have laws and NL responses regarding the issue improved and if not, what has hindered progress?

INTRO Generally yes, however, the complexity and delicate nature of the issue due to the impact of responses on the well being of children have meant that the progression of these responses have been limited in certain ways.

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P2 What have legal responses done over time?

P2 Evolved in response to perceived failures of existing law, media and community pressure, as well as reports by independant organisations.

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P2 What does Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 NSW state?

P2 It is a crime to abuse a child. Additionally, The Child Protection Act 1999 provides for the mandatory reporting of children at significant riskThe 2012 Child Protection Act provides for working with children checks.

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P2 What does the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998 (NSW) and the Child Care and Protection ACt aim to do?

P2 ensure the rights of children and deter individuals from abusing or allowing the abuse of children.

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What are the consequences of severe abuse and neglect?

parents or guardians can be convicted under the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) or can be issued AVOs by Police to act as a deterrent.

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End of P2 statement

Whilst these attempt to deter offenders and protect children, the high prevalence of child abuse and neglect indicates that the laws are not effective in that they are not easily enforced or recognised by the entire community.

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P3 Statement: What does the legal system also recognise?

The need to fast track serious cases of abuse to protect children from future harm. This was achieved through the intro of Magellan Program in 2003 to Family Courts, aiming to address and resolve cases within 6 months. The program also provides children with access to Independent Children's Lawyers, improving their access to the law.

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P3 What did the 2007 AIFS report into the Magellan Program reveal?

the cases were quickly resolved and that participants felt "better outcomes were achieved for children and their families".

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P3 What did the 2007 (Magellan) AIFS report indicate?

The success of the program, which was partly due to better case management and resource efficiency as indicated by the study.

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P3 Why are Magellan programs still criticised?

6 months is too long and such a wait could be detrimental to child's well being. This could be addressed through the increased provision of judges into the Family Court.

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P3The 2016 SMH article

P4 'Judges 'hard to recruit, retain' because they don't receive pensions' AG George Brandis stated that he understanded the need for more judges, however stated that 'there are resource implications'. NEED FOR IMPROVED RESOURCE EXPENDITURE THEN TO REDUCE TIME!

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P4 What is the main gov body responisble for child protection?

P4 Family and Community Services (FACS) which respond and investigate child protection issues as well as supports families to prevent future child abuse. As last resort remove children into OOHC, even though not always best solution, recognising best interests thru Emergency Care and Protection Orders.

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P4 What does FACS play a crucial role in?

P4 Responding to and preventing child abuse and negelct, achieving successful outcomes for many child victims.

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P5 What cases highlighted that child at risk of serious harm can still be missed?

P5 Deaths of children Dean Shillinsworth and Shelly Ward at the hands of their parents in 2007. Sparked media & community outrage toward FACS due to ineffective responses to both children and despite numerous reports made. (Daily Telegraph 'Brief, Brutal Lives of forgotten children)

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P5 What happened in response to the deaths that sparked community and media outrage and what did it suggest?

P5 Wood Inquiry into NSW Child Protection Services, suggesting influence and success of media in driving law reform, whilst revealing the ineffectiveness of FACS (however, the media rarely reports FACS success stories!)

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P5 What did WOOD inquiry lead to?

P5 Creation of legislation with Wood Inquiry recommendations & Keep Them Safe Campaign.

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P5 Why is the Keep them Safe Campaign effective?

P5 It aims to increase communication btw legal and legal organisations and increase resource efficiency.

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P5 What was established in response to the Keep them Safe campaign?

P5 Family Referral Services for children at risk but not serious risk. Given through NGOS (mackillop fam services, Barnados Australia). They refer at risk children to services best suited to needs.

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P5 ARE FRS effective?

P5 Yes, highly resource efficient way of providing services to children and providing early support for struggling families.

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P6 What did the Wood INQuiry reveal about ATSI children?

P6 Responses to address the large disparity of ATSI children highlighted by the Wood Campaign have proved non-legal responses have so far been ineffectual. Even though culturally responsive NGOs by Aboriginal Secretariat of NSW were established following the inquiry to address this, a 2016 AIFS report found that over-representation statistics had not diminished.

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P6 What did the AIFS study about over-rep of ATSI kids reveal?

P6 Need for further adjustments so ability to protect ATSI children is increased. Addressed COAG's National Framework for Protecting Children's third framework from 2015-2018.

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P7 What are additional non-legal responses?

P7 NGOs, eg Braveheart Foundation and NSW Health also assist child victims of abuse. There responses regarded as largely effective.

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CONLCUSION: What is evident from all this?

For adequate protection of children from harm, both legal & non-legal responses required.

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CONLCUSION: How effective are these responses?

Effective to an extent, but improvements still be made.

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CONLCUSION: Ultimately...

if both legal & NL responses continue to increase in effectiveness, all children will eventually receive the adequate care and protection they deserve.

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What was the significance of the FL Amendment (Family violence and other measures) Act 2011 for the FC?

all court personnel and FDR practitioners must report any suspicions of child abuse. This can lead to the case being fast tracked by the Magellan program for serious allgeations of abuse.

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What court hears cases relating to care and protection of children under 18 and provides independent clinical assessments?

Children's Court

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The COnversation 2014 "Abuse and neglect: Australia’s child protection ‘crisis’" In New South Wales, reported that child protection officers were conducting face-to-face assessments

for only 28% of reports where a child was alleged to be “at risk of significant harm”.

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The COnversation 2014 In New South Wales, reported that child protection officers were conducting face-to-face assessments
for only 28% of reports where a child was alleged to be “at risk of significant harm”.

"Abuse and neglect: Australia’s child protection ‘crisis’"

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A combination of advances in research, changes in social values, and breaking of taboos has resulted in

an expansion over time in the types of maltreatment acknowledged and a decrease in the threshold for what constitutes abuse or neglect.

34

A shift to less conservative and religious societal values over time in Australia has led to increased recognition

of the problems that can arise within families, including the breakdown of relationships, child abuse and neglect and the subsequent importance of protecting children. The complexity...

35

A shift to less conservative and religious societal values over time in Australia has led to increased recognition of the problems that can arise within families, including the breakdown of relationships, child abuse and neglect and the subsequent importance of protecting children. The complexity...

The complexity and private nature of these issues, compounded by overlapping federal and state jurisdictions, has required both legal (the legal system and legislation) and non-legal (government, non-government organisations’ counselling and social welfare services) responses.

36

A shift to less conservative and religious societal values over time in Australia has led to increased recognition of the problems that can arise within families, including the breakdown of relationships, child abuse and neglect and the subsequent importance of protecting children. The complexity and private nature of these issues, compounded by overlapping federal and state jurisdictions, has required both legal (the legal system and legislation) and non-legal (government, non-government organisations’ counselling and social welfare services) responses. Though

amendments to legislation and changes to the legal and non-legal systems to reflect society’s changing values have proved largely beneficial, their exists opportunities for further improvement.

37

What was the significance of the FL Amendment (Family violence and other measures) Act 2011 care and protection of children?

. The changes emphasised the best interests of the child, including the witnessing of violence as a form of violence due to the detrimental impact this had on children.

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the FL Amendment (Family violence and other measures) Act 2011 also...

also responded to a perceived failure of existing law by the Family Law (Shared Parental Responsibility) Amendment Act 2006 to encourage the reporting of domestic violence, tipping "the balance of family law back towards putting the safety of the children first."

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Despite responding directly to the 2006 Act, some argue that the amendment failed to directly address that family violence victims will still partake in primary dispute resolutions and be “encouraged to reach settlements which may expose them and their children to violence and abuse.”

(‘Family Violence and the Impact of Recent Amendments to the Family Law Act’, Adiva Sifris, 2012).

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(‘Family Violence and the Impact of Recent Amendments to the Family Law Act’, Adiva Sifris, 2012).

Despite responding directly to the 2006 Act, some argue that the amendment failed to directly address that family violence victims will still partake in primary dispute resolutions and be “encouraged to reach settlements which may expose them and their children to violence and abuse.”

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the Child Protection Act 1999 (NSW)

professionals working with children are required to report children who appear to be at risk of abuse or neglect to FACS.

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The Child Protection Legislation Amendment Act 2013
a result of

“Child Protection Australia 2012-2013, Australian Institute of Health & Welfare

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What did “Child Protection Australia 2012-2013, Australian Institute of Health & Welfare result in

The Child Protection Legislation Amendment Act 2013

44

Child Protection Amendment Act 2013 (NSW)
 Focus on keeping young people safe by:

Increased early intervention
 Expansion of Parental Responsibility Contracts (to improve parenting skills) to support expectant mothers w. substance abuse issues.
 Courts can now consider open adoptions as a permanent sol’n to foster care.

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