Another child dies while waiting for child safety to call

Friday 10 March, 2017

  • Six-month-old baby dies after over-worked child safety officers fail to respond in time to reports he was in danger
  • Latest tragic death confirms Palaszczuk Government has not made changes to the child safety system since Caboolture toddler Mason Jett Lee died at Caboolture
  • October 2016 shows only 20 per cent of child abuse reports in Central Queensland requiring a 10-day response were actioned in time


Shadow Minister for Child Safety Ros Bates said she was shocked and angered to learn of yet another child dying while waiting in a child safety backlog.

“I have been advised that the six-month-old baby who died at Yeppoon was missed by child safety officers despite concerns being raised in January this year,” Ms Bates said.

“His death occurred while waiting in an investigation backlog at the Rockhampton child safety service centre.

“Rockhampton is in a worse state than Caboolture and staff are stretched to the limit

“Secret internal data from October 2016 shows only 20 per cent of abuse reports requiring a 10-day response were actioned in time in Central Queensland

“Worse still for abused children is that some 12 per cent of critical 24-hour cases were missed.

Ms Bates said Annastacia Palaszczuk and Minister Shannon Fentiman were not only failing to protect Queensland children, but putting child safety staff in the most stressful of situations.

“Labor’s Child Safety Department is in complete disarray and is imploding fast,” she said.

“The crisis and growing backlogs engulfing child safety investigations are nothing short of a scandal.

“Annastasia Palaszczuk continues to support a bumbling Minister who is putting kids’ lives at risk by failing to fix this crisis.

“We need to overhaul the way child abuse investigations are carried out in Queensland if we are to reduce the backlog and end these terrible deaths.”