Children and Community Services Act 2004 Review
The Children and Community Services Act 2004 came into effect on 1 March 2006, replacing child welfare laws in Western Australian that were over fifty years old. The Department for Child Protection and Family Support is the Agency principally assisting the Minister for Child Protection in administration of the Act. The objects of Children and Community Services Act 2004 are:
(a) to promote the wellbeing of children, other individuals, families and communities; and
(b) to acknowledge the primary role of parents, families and communities in safeguarding and promoting the wellbeing of children; and
(c) to encourage and support parents, families and communities in carrying out that role; and
(d) to support and reinforce the role and responsibility of parents in exercising appropriate control over the behaviour of their children; and
(e) to provide for the protection and care of children in circumstances where their parents have not given, or are unlikely or unable to give, that protection and care; and
(f) to protect children from exploitation in employment (section 6).
The Minister for Child Protection, the Hon Andrea Mitchell MLA, is required to carry-out a statutory review on the operation and effectiveness of the Children and Community Services Act 2004 in 2017 (the Review).
The Department for Child Protection and Family Support will conduct the Review on behalf of the Minister and consult widely with stakeholders including government and community services sector service providers, Aboriginal agencies and community representatives and stakeholder representatives. A report of the Review’s deliberations and recommendations will be provided to the Minister for Child Protection to be tabled in Parliament by the end of 2017.
Terms of Reference
The terms of reference for the Review are to examine the operation and effectiveness of the Act as a whole and in particular:
- changes to support the introduction of consistent high-quality foster carer standards through a single decision-maker for approvals and revocations;
- the principles relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in sections 12 to 14 and the consultation requirement in section 81
- any changes necessary to support the safety and wellbeing of adults and children subject to family and domestic violence
- the provisions relating to secure care arrangements for children at high-risk, and
- issues relating to the intersection between child protection proceedings under Part 5 of the Act and proceedings in the Family Court.
How to make a submission
Interested individuals and groups within the community, professionals, and government and community sector service providers are invited to make a written submission to the review. The Department for Child Protection and Family Support particularly encourages people with experience in receiving or delivering services provided or funded by the Department.
- The closing date for submissions is 31 March 2017 -
A Consultation Paper was released on 1 December 2016 to assist in preparing submissions to the Department for Child Protection and Family Support. A copy of the Children and Community Services Act 2004 can be downloaded from the State Law Publisher website by visiting www.slp.wa.gov.au
Submissions may address the specific questions posed in the Consultation Paper or may address any other aspect of the Terms of Reference or the operation and effectiveness of the Children and Community Services Act 2004.
Submission cover sheet – All submissions should be lodged with an accompanying cover sheet.
The preferred method for lodging submissions to the Review is by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, submissions can be lodged by post to the following address:
2017 Legislative Review
General Law Unit
Department for Child Protection and Family Support
PO Box 6334
EAST PERTH WA 6892
Queries about the Review may be made by phoning 9222 2695
Please note that the Department for Child Protection and Family Support may publish written submissions to the Review on its website, and submissions may also be quoted from in the final report. If you do not wish for your submission to be made public, or if you wish to make a confidential submission that is not to be quoted from, please make this clear at the time of lodgement by completing section 2 of the submission cover sheet.
Please be aware that consultation records and submissions to the Review will be held by the Department for Child Protection and Family Support subject to the State Records Act 2000 and may be released in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 1992 if subject to an application under that Act.
A final report of the Review will be laid before each House of Parliament by the end of 2017.