TO: The Honourable the Speaker and Members of the House of Assembly (Tasmania)
TO THE HONOURABLE THE SPEAKER AND MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY:
The petition of the undersigned Residents of Tasmania draws to the attention of the House:
(1) Issues around the effects of child abuse and neglect are significant, and lead to lifelong problems.
(2) Outcomes for children, if someone takes action to protect them, can be overwhelmingly positive. Adequate resourcing of Child Protection Services, and equipping Staff with the information and resources they need, are vital to protect children, and support them after prolonged abuse and neglect.
(3) A National Database of Child Abuse is essential to protect vulnerable children and to help Child Protection Workers assist families at-risk.
(4) In Australia, statutory child protection is the responsibility of each state and territory government. As a result, children are falling through the cracks when moving interstate, and the Departments tasked with keeping children safe are unable to do so.
Your Petitioners therefore request the Government to make formal representations to each State and Territory Attorney General, to establish an integrated National Register and nationwide alert system, which includes:
(a) A national child protection database containing all information about cases, accessible to social workers in every jurisdiction.
(b) Automatic transfer of guardianship or custody when a person under state care moves interstate.
(c) State and territory authorities to be alerted whenever a child protection agency loses contact with a person under their care.
(d) Case files should never be closed if families disengage from health or support services.