Australia’s Aboriginal children are removed from their families at world’s highest rate

Children

9 April 2018 - Nearly 60,000 Australian children have been removed by child protection authorities into “out-of-home-care”, with more than 17,000 of the removed children comprising Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children.

By Gerry Georgatos

Australia’s child removal rates are among the world’s highest. From a racialised lens, Australia’s Aboriginal children are removed at the world’s highest rate.

Australia’s worsening child removal crisis has led a long overdue National Forum on Child Protection to be held in Darwin over three days – from June 26 to 28. ...

The second day of the forum will focus on Aboriginal and Torres Islander children who come to the attention of child protection authorities.

The second day will be chaired by Ann Oakley, CEO of Kinship Connections Aboriginal Corporation. ...

According to last year’s ‘Family Matters’ report the number of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children removed from their families is set to triple in the next two decades.

Poverty, welfare and suicide prevention researcher Gerry Georgatos has been calling for child protection and family services “to focus much more on assisting vulnerable families.”
...
Children removed from their biological parents are among the most elevated risk groups to serious aberrant behaviour and to suicide. ...

It is a grim reality that officially at least 17 per cent of Australians live below the poverty line and that 40 per cent of First Nations peoples live below the poverty line.

Nearly 100 per cent of children removed are from families living below or near the poverty line.” ...

This forum has been convened in the Northern Territory where one in 14 of the Northern Territory’s Aboriginal children have been removed from their families.

Two-thirds of the Northern Territory’s Aboriginal children have child protection notifications issued in their names.

Three-quarters of the Territory’s Aboriginal peoples live below the poverty line.

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National Forum on Child Protection

Developing early intervention and prevention strategies and reforming systems for positive long-term outcomes

26th - 28th June 2018 | Hilton Darwin

Overview

'Australia has the highest rate of children in the child protection system and in out-of-home care in the world, with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children being over-represented.

'In 2008, former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd made the national apology to those affected by the Stolen Generations. Since then, the number of forcibly removed children has risen by 65 per cent. ...

'Delegates will learn how to develop collaborative cross-sector partnerships to increase the consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and successfully co-design services, as well as supporting community organisations to deliver services on the ground.

'The forum will also address how to improve Australia’s child protection systems through practical reforms.'

'Attend this forum and learn how to:

  • Shift focus from a crisis-driven approach to an early intervention and prevention model
  • Consult with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities to co-design services in order to meet the individual community’s needs
  • Create better integration and coordination of services
  • Develop collaborative partnerships with Aboriginal and community organisations to deliver support services for families and children
  • Develop cultural competency within child protection bodies to better engage with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families'

For further info on this Forum, go to the National Forum on Child Protection website.

Website includes Overview, Programme, Speakers, Sponsors, Partners, Registration, Venue:

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