Family Matters welcomes the adoption of all seven recommendations outlined in yesterday’s report on children and young people in out-of-home care by Tasmanian Commissioner for Children & Young People Mark Morrissey – a show of genuine commitment to improving standards and outcomes for Tasmania’s most vulnerable children.
In particular, Family Matters welcomes the prioritisation of the voices of the young people affected, in the form of an ongoing consultative panel of young people who have been in contact with the child protection system, and actively seeking out and listening to the voices of children currently in out-of-home care.
Family Matters Co-Chair, Gerry Moore, welcomes the recommendations and encourages further innovation:
Family Matters urges the Tasmanian Government to use this valuable opportunity to further and properly implement the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle by incorporating it in Tasmanian legislation and policy – addressing Tasmania’s lack of commitment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander participation in child protection decision making.
“In this regard, we particularly support the Commissioner’s recognition that Tasmanian out-of-home care standards be developed in line with the basis that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are to be involved in decisions in accordance with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle.”
As per the seminal 2016 Family Matters Report, the Family Matters coalition also encourages the Tasmanian Government to appoint an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander specific Commissioner for Children & Young People to enable participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in both system design and oversight.