tolley_newThe Child, Young Person, and Their Families (Advocacy, Workforce, and Age Settings) Amendment Bill has passed its first reading in Parliament.

The Amendment Bill represents the first of legislative changes as part of the transformation of care and protection.

The Bill:

  • extends the age of state care and protection to a young person’s 18th birthday.
  • ensures the views of children and young people are taken into account as part of decision making at an individual level and in the development of services and policy.
  • supports the establishment of an independent youth advocacy service.
  • enables the broader range of professionals with specialist skills who will widen the expertise within the new model to perform some functions under the Act. Social workers would still be the main professionals responsible for carrying out these functions.

Social Development Minister Anne Tolley says

We are transforming our care and protection system into a completely child-centred operating model,”

“It will deliver better long-term outcomes through to adulthood for vulnerable children and young people, rather than just short-term crisis management, by focusing on prevention, intensive intervention, care support services, transition support and preventing youth offending and reoffending.”

The Bill has been referred to the Social Services Select Committee and submissions are open on the website and close on Thursday, 28 July 2016.