SNAICC is undertaking research and resource development work in support of improving compliance with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle. SNAICC is therefore pleased that in support of this, Arnold Bloch Liebler a law firm in Melbourne has documented the sections of state and territory legislation that incorporate the Principle.
The Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander child placement principle (ATSICPP) recognises the importance of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in out of home care staying connected to family and culture. It also recognises of the destructive impact of historic policies of assimilation and forced and unjustified removal of children on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
In each jurisdiction the ATSICPP is part of child protection legislation and requires a similar descending order of placement for children who need to be in out of home care. The first preference under the principle is to place the child with their extended family or kinship group, the second preference with their local community and the third preference with another Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander family in the area. Once all of these options have been fully explored, the fourth preference is a non-family and non-Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander placement. Implementation of the Principle also requires that relevant Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander organisations be consulted about the child’s placement and that children are assisted to keep in contact with their family, language and culture.