The Standing Committee on Health, Ageing and Community Services (the Committee) has made 44 recommendations in its report inquiring into the ability to share information in the care and protection system in accordance with the Children and Young People Act 2008. The Committee’s report was tabled today—Thursday 30 July 2020. The report can be accessed at: https://www.parliament.act.gov.au/parliamentary-business/in-committees/committees/standing-committees-current-assembly/standing-committee-on-health,-ageing-and-community-services/inquiry-into-child-and-youth-protection-services2#tab1435366-5id
‘In seeking to respond to the many issues raised in evidence to this inquiry—the Committee has been forward-looking in setting out its views and recommendations using an overarching ethos that a care and protection system and its services should at all times be needs-led and not service-led,’ the Committee Chair, Ms Bec Cody MLA, said.
The Committee Chair stated that ‘overwhelmingly evidence received to this inquiry was of the view that the default prohibition on the sharing of sensitive information and the lack of appeal and review rights established a culture of information sharing that was counterproductive to transparent and accountable decision-making. Ultimately, such a culture is not in the best interests of a child or young person—the people to whom the system seeks to serve’. The Chair added that ‘decision-making under the Children and Youth Protection Act 2008 affects the rights of individuals in profound and life-changing ways. It is imperative that the legislative framework reflects the fundamental components of best practice in administrative law and decision-making’.
The Committee thanks all of those who contributed to its inquiry, by making submissions and/or appearing before it to give evidence. The Committee recognises the significant commitment of time and resources, and for many the emotional heartache and distress, required to participate in an inquiry of this nature and is grateful that it was able to draw on a broad range of wisdom, expertise and experience in its deliberations. In its report, the Committee has based many of its recommendations on suggestions by inquiry participants.
The Committee Chair also commended her Committee colleagues for working so cooperatively on this wide ranging and very important inquiry. Further information on the Committee’s inquiry can be accessed at: https://www.parliament.act.gov.au/parliamentary-business/in-committees/committees/standing-committees-current-assembly/standing-committee-on-health,-ageing-and-community-services/inquiry-into-child-and-youth-protection-services2
STATEMENT ENDS—Thursday 30 July 2020
Ms Bec Cody MLA
(for comment on the inquiry)
(02) 620 51448
Dr Andréa Cullen
(for further information)
(02) 620 50136