SAs child protection response is improving
The Sector > Provider > General News > SA’s response to child protection and family support improving, ROGs data shows

SA’s response to child protection and family support improving, ROGs data shows

by Freya Lucas

January 24, 2024

New data drawn from the 2022-23 Report on Government Services (ROGs) has shown strong improvements in South Australia’s child protection and family support system responses.


The recently released ROGs data shows that 96 per cent of children who exited out-of-home care to either reunification or a third-party placement did not return within 12 months – the highest result for all jurisdictions and 8 per cent above the national average.


The Report also shows that the Department for Child Protection undertook 10,418 investigations in the 2022-23 financial year – up 5.9 per cent on the previous period.


Of these investigations, 46.2 per cent were completed within 28 days of their commencement date – the highest of all jurisdictions and 18.5 percentage points higher than the national average.


In addition to quicker response times, South Australia is continuing to improve stability for children and young people in care. The report shows that 86.5 per cent of children placed in care for two or more years had lived in either one or two placements – 2.3 per cent higher than the previous year, and the highest result in this measure over the last two years.


“All children and young people deserve to grow up in a safe and secure environment where they are loved, nurtured and supported to reach their potential. We are determined to help them do so,” Minister for Child Protection Katrine Hildyard said.


“Addressing legacy issues, strengthening families, tackling the complex issues they face and reducing the number of children and young people in care requires significant investment, stringent focus on change and an enlivened and coordinated approach engaged across government, service providers and the community.”


“Addressing the safety and security of the 1 in 3 children and young people in contact with the child protection and family support system in South Australia is a key priority and it is pleasing to see the improvements in response times,” she added.


“While our long-term strategy and vision is being developed with input from the community, the sector, government, families and people with experience of the system, we are funding innovative programs designed to address key areas of need within the system. These programs are designed to continue to slow growth and improve the quality of and access to family support services.”


These encouraging results, the Minister continued, stem from significant Government investment in the child protection and family support system, with $372 million provided since 2022, and with a focus on long term reform of the system.


Funding has been prioritised across the system through investments in effective intervention, including into family group conferencing, better support for families and additional support for foster and kinship carers.


Work is underway on the development of the Government’s 20-year vision and design of a fit for purpose child protection and family support system that has children and improvements in their lives at its centre.

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