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Child Protection: a win for CP staff

CPMINISTER Jacquie Petrusma has announced extra resources for Child Protection as part of the implementation of the 29 recommendations in the Strong Families – Safe Kids Report.

This good news comes after a long, hard campaign to raise the issues of chronic under-funding and under-staffing including many letters to the Minister and action outside her office.    

The Minister says an extra 31 staff will be added and there’ll be an injection of $20 million in funding with the first $12 million used to redesign the system, including: – $3.6 million to refocus CP Intake into an Advice & Referral Service that will provide “early access and integrated support to vulnerable children and their families”. – $8.5 million to establish Child Safety Teams and move away from the single case worker model.  

The Child Safety Teams will be introduced over the next two years and will include Senior Practice Consultants, Support Workers and Unit Coordinators with Psychologists providing direct support for staff dealing with the pressures of responding to the needs of children.

There’ll also be E-learning and staff development resources for the teams.   The Implementation Plan will be released in coming weeks and we look forward to seeing more detail about the redesign and the boost in staff and funding.  

In an email to unions the department says that once the Implementation Plan is released in full it will “begin a process of significant consultation with your organisations, staff, and other key stakeholders”.

Consultation is good, but it’s a shame the Implementation Plan was drafted without CP staff input.

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