LNP calls for independent inquiry into Department of Child Safety

LNP calls for independent inquiry into Department of Child Safety

Wednesday 21 September, 2016

  • LNP Opposition calls for independent, external inquiry into the Department of Child Safety, including Queensland’s foster care system
  • A singularly focused inquiry can properly determine where and why the child safety system is letting down Queensland’s most vulnerable children
  • Independent inquiry panel could include a former senior bureaucrat with appropriate experience, a retired Supreme Court judge and a child safety advocate

The LNP Opposition has today called for an independent, external inquiry into the Department of Child Safety, including Queensland’s foster care system, amid growing concerns the Department is at breaking point.

Shadow Minister for Child Safety Ros Bates said an urgent investigation into the administration and operations of the Department was needed, after a number of recent cases raised serious questions about the integrity of the current child protection system.

“Over the past 12 months, a number of tragic cases have highlighted flaws in our child protection system that need to be addressed immediately,” Ms Bates said.

“The operations of the Department of Child Safety have become so concerning, it’s now clear that nothing short of a stand-alone investigation into the administration of the Department is needed.

“Only a thorough, singularly focused inquiry can properly determine where and why the child safety system is letting down Queensland’s most vulnerable children.

“The independent inquiry panel could include a former senior bureaucrat with appropriate experience and expertise, a retired Supreme Court judge and a child safety advocate.

“With around 9000 children in care, Labor needs to reassure Queenslanders there’s a strong system in place to guarantee our vulnerable young people are in a safer place than the homes they were removed from.

“To this day, Shannon Fentiman has failed to stand up and assure Queenslanders that the child safety system isn’t in crisis and that children in care are being properly protected right now.

“Regardless of what side of politics you’re on, the safety and wellbeing of our most vulnerable children should be everyone’s priority.

“I urge the Palaszczuk Labor Government to put the safety of children ahead of politics and launch an independent inquiry to ensure other Queensland children aren’t let down by the system that’s there to protect them.”

 

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