Thursday, 13 July 2017

· Labor must come clean and release the latest child safety data now
· Labor’s embattled Child Safety Minister shouldn’t use estimates hearings as a smoke-screen for damning data
· Previous data showed 10,016 abuse investigations not finalised within two months

Labor’s embattled Child Safety Minister Shannon Fentiman is on notice to release the latest official report card for Queensland’s child protection system now, before this month’s estimates hearings.

LNP Shadow Child Safety Minister Ros Bates said the do-nothing Palaszczuk Government had form for “washing” child safety data and using major events to try and hide the truth.

“We know from the December data that 13,135 cases of suspected child abuse cases across the state were stuck in backlogs and didn’t get actioned in time,” Ms Bates said.

“Earlier this year it was revealed an infant had tragically died in suspicious circumstances at Yeppoon while waiting for child safety to investigate.

“We also saw the tragic death of little Maddilyn-Rose this year, a child who was known to child safety.

“Labor’s seen fit to release previous data during last year’s estimates hearings, around public holidays and at the same time as major government reports are released, but can’t seem to release information about the most vulnerable children in Queensland on time.

“Shannon Fentiman can try to spin the data anyway she likes, but there’s no hiding from the reality that the system remains in crisis.”

Ms Bates said with more children at risk due to poor Ministerial management, Queenslanders needed a system able to protect them.

“Labor’s spin machine has continually worked overtime to shift blame onto ice-addicted parents but that doesn’t absolve this government from the responsibility to do everything it can to protect the children in these families,” Ms Bates said.

“Queenslanders don’t need more washed data from this incompetent Minister – they want the truth.”

Ms Bates said the December data showed more than 10,000 abuse investigations had dragged on for months with no result.

“At the same time record numbers of kids in care were being pushed out of the system with no planning, putting them at risk of homelessness and further harm,” she said.

“Labor must stop washing data, come clean to Queenslanders and release the latest child safety data immediately.

“Only the LNP will build a better Queensland by building stronger families.”