Fatally Flawed: The Child Protection Crisis in Australia
By Jeremy Sammut with Toby O’Brien 3 July 2009
Despite record government spending on child welfare services in this country, the child protection system is in crisis—most markedly in New South Wales.
Australian child protection authorities are failing to fulfil their core responsibility of protecting and rescuing vulnerable children. Reports of suspected child abuse and neglect are not being fully investigated, and the ‘Starved Girls’ of
Australia are falling through the cracks in increasing numbers.
The establishment of government-run child protection authorities staffed by university-trained social workers in the 1970s led to a series of changes in child protection policy and practice.
The major change is that the traditional role of child protection work (the assessment and forensic investigation of reports concerning children in danger of abuse and neglect) has been crowded out by other forms of social work and community services, especially drug counseling, that focus on working with parents and preserving and reuniting families.
Download the complete Policy Paper by CIS here