A statement by Dr Katrina Lines on behalf of Act for Kids
Act for Kids supports all policies that have the goal of protecting children and providing safe nurturing homes for them.
Today we have reached out to the Queensland Opposition and have asked for the opportunity to discuss their plan to overhaul the child safety system and establish a stand-alone agency called the Child Protection Force. We are focused on making sure the system works and keeps kids safe.
Actions to augment the capacity of child safety services are welcome. However, we also need strong policies that result in decreases in the numbers of children at risk and being taken into care. We won’t achieve that goal without full community commitment to putting children and their rights first. What’s clear is we all need to do better to keep children safe. We all have a role to play, and seeing better collaboration between agencies is certainly welcome.
I am particularly keen to also learn more about the plan for Child Safety Officers to work around the clock, seven days a week.
What we need is for our child protection system to be focused on putting children first. While every member of a complex family deserves support, we need to be unequivocal that the child safety system must put kids first.
We’ve seen from the terrible case involving Mason Lee, that poor little boy became almost invisible. According to the Coroner’s report, officers got caught up in the complex relationship between Mason’s Mother and Step Father. That little boy needed to be the number one priority.
There is no question that illicit drugs, including ICE, are having a devastating impact on families, and there are some truly horrendous consequences for children.
Now is the time for the politics to be put aside in the interest of kids. I hope all our Government decision makers can come together to put kids first.
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