Reviewing Implementation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle Tasmania 2020


This report reviews the progress of the Tasmanian Government, through the through the Department of Communities and its Children, Youth and Families division, in implementing the full intent of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle.

This implementation review is conducted on the basis of the best practice approach set out in SNAICC, 2017, Understanding and Applying the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle – A Resource for Legislation, Policy and Program Development and SNAICC, 2018, The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle: A Guide to Support Implementation.

It considers changes in the implementation of the five elements of the Child Placement Principle – prevention, partnership, placement, participation and connection – described in diagram across five interrelated system elements, since the comprehensive baseline analysis SNAICC released in April 2018 (2018 Baseline Analysis).

This review considers implementation efforts from 1 May 2019 to 30 April 2020.

Key findings of the Implementation Review for Tasmania 2020

Tasmania continues to have limited alignment of legislative, policy and process frameworks to meet the full intent of the Child Placement Principle.

Limited mechanisms to ensure Aboriginal participation in policy reform, decision-making, system and service design or delivery has resulted in a child safety system that does not always meet the needs of Aboriginal children, their families and communities. With limited emphasis on partnerships, there continues to be a lack of design, development and delivery of policy and programs in Tasmania by Aboriginal organisations. There remain no Department-established programs for Aboriginal organisations to participate in child safety decision-making, to lead in family participation through Family Group Conferencing or to take up case management or guardianship powers and functions.

There has been no identifiable significant progress by the Department to implement the Placement element of the Child Placement Principle during the reporting period, which is concerning given that Tasmania continues to have the lowest rate in the country of placing Aboriginal children with Aboriginal carers. There is also a lack of any other programs that are targeted to identify, recruit, and support Aboriginal kinship carers, noting that all other states and territories, except for the Australian Capital Territory, have Aboriginal kinship carer recruitment and support programs delivered by Aboriginal community-controlled organisations in place, to varying degrees. Unless progress is made across policy or program areas that prioritise placement with kin or other Aboriginal carers, it is likely that Tasmania’s rate of children placed in accordance with the Child Placement Principle will remain the lowest in the nation.

Search SNAICC – National Voice for our Children

The SNAICC – National Voice for our Children website is not compatible with Internet Explorer. Please use a modern browser such as Chrome, Firefox, Edge, or Safari for the best experience.