Home' Policy Magazine : Policy Vol 33 - No 1 Contents 20 POLICY • Vol. 33 No. 1 • Autumn 2017
THE LOST CHILDREN: WHY THE UNITED NATIONS IS WRONG ABOUT AUSTRALIAN CHILD PROTECTION
Submission Number 3 to the Inquiry into Queensland’s
Child Protection System (Queensland Government,
2013); Philip Cummins, Report of the Protecting Victoria’s
Vulnerable Children Inquiry (Published by the Department
of Premier and Cabinet, 2012); Lenny Roth, Permanency
Planning and Adoption of Children in Out-of-Home Care
(NSW Parliamentary Research Centre, 2013); Sammut,
The Madness of Australian Child Protection; James Wood,
Report of the Special Commission of Inquiry into Child
Protection Services in NSW (NSW Government, 2008).
10 AIHW, Child Protection Australia (Canberra: Australian
Government, 2013); Curtis, ‘If Royal Commissions
Worked’ (see note 3); Carolyn Curtis, ‘Child Protection
Needs to Stop the Transfer of Neglect from Parent to Child’,
Adelaide Now (22 June 2016); John Frederick and Chris
Goddard, ‘Exploring the Relationship between Poverty,
Childhood Adversity and Child Abuse from the Perspective
of Adulthood’, Child Abuse Review 16:5 (2007), 323–341;
Rosalie McLachlan, Geoff Gilfillan and Jenny Gordon,
Deep and Persistent Disadvantage in Australia, Productivity
Commission Staff Working Paper (Commonwealth of
Australia, 2013); Sammut, The Madness of Australian Child
11 Australian Child Rights Taskforce (see note 1), 31; World
Health Organisation, World Report on Violence and Health
(Geneva: WHO, 2002).
12 Australian Child Rights Taskforce (see note 1), 17, 31-32,
13 As above, 14.
14 As above, 7, 14, 31, 34.
15 Rebecca Brown and Harriet Ward, Decision-Making Within
a Child’s Timeframe: An Overview of Current Research
Evidence for Family Justice Professionals Concerning Child
Development and the Impact of Maltreatment (Childhood
Wellbeing Research Centre, 2013); Brigid Jordon and
Robyn Sketchley, A Stitch in Time Saves Nine: Preventing
and Responding to the Abuse and Neglect of Infants (Australian
Institute of Family Studies, National Child Protection
16 Queensland Child Protection Commission of Inquiry,
Taking Responsibility: A Roadmap for Queensland Child
Protection (Queensland Government, 2013); Martin Narey,
‘The Narey Report on Adoption: Our Blueprint for Britian’s
Lost Children’, The Times (5 July 2011); Sammut, The
Madness of Australian Child Protection (see note 8).
17 The Centre for Excellence in Open Adoption, ‘What is
Open Adoption?’ (NSW: Barnardos, 2016).
18 Annie Guest, ‘Qld Child Protection Inquiry Told Mental
Health Centre Will Close’, abc.net.au (8 November 2012).
19 McLachlan, Gilfillan and Gordon, Deep and Persistent
Disadvantage in Australia (see note 10); Jack P. Shonkoff,
‘Building a New Biodevelopmental Framework to Guide
the Future of Early Childhood Policy’, Child Development
81:1 (January/February 2010), 357- 367.
20 Brown and Ward, Decision-Making Within a Child’s
Timeframe (see note 15); Jordon and Sketchley, A Stitch
in Time Saves Nine (see note 15); National Scientific
Future policy needs to reflect what is known
about how the current system fails children. Timely
decisions about removal and permanent placement
for children, especially infants, after a child first
comes to the attention of authorities, is crucial
for child welfare and development.40 Permanent
placement decisions are aimed at promoting stability
and can be achieved through open adoption.
Adoption gives children whose parents are unable
or unwilling to care for them the loving family
environment required for healthy child development.
Greater use of adoption to give children permanent
homes will reduce the pressure on child protection
systems and meaningfully address the problem of
Timely permanency of care through open
adoption is the answer to our child protection crisis.
Safe and stable family environments will make the
national aspiration to protect children’s human
rights and reduce the prevalence of violence and
other maltreatment experienced within the family,
1 Australian Child Rights Taskforce, CRC25 Australian Child
Rights Progress Report (UNICEF Australia and the National
Children’s and Youth Law Centre, May 2016), 3.
2 As above.
3 Carolyn Curtis, ‘If Royal Commissions Worked Children
and Families Would Be Safe by Now’, The Guardian (7
4 Australian Child Rights Taskforce, CRC25, 31.
5 AIHW (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare), Child
Protection Australia 2004–05, Child Welfare Series No. 38
(Canberra: AIHW, 2006).
6 AIHW, Child Protection Australia 2014–15, Child Welfare
Series No. 63 (Canberra: AIHW, 2016).
7 Australian Child Rights Taskforce, CRC25, 33.
8 AIHW, Child Protection Australia 2014–15; Commonwealth
of Australia, Protecting Children is Everyone’s Business:
National Framework for Protecting Australia’s Children
2009-2020 (Canberra: Council of Australian Governments,
2009); Jeremy Sammut, The Madness of Australian Child
Protection: Why Adoption Will Rescue Australia’s Underclass
Children (Victoria: Connor Court, 2015).
9 AIHW, Child Protection Australia 2014–15; Karen Broadley,
Chris Goddard and Joe Tucci, They Count for Nothing:
Poor Child Protection Statistics a Barrier to a Child-centred
Framework (Child Abuse Prevention Research Australia,
Monash University, February 2014); Commission for
Children, Young People and Child Guardian (CCYPCG),
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