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- Friday, 1st December 2017 -
Launched at Parliament House in Canberra on 29th November, the Family Matters Report 2017 reveals facts about future prospects for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families that should shock all Australians.
Data from the report shows that:
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children are now 9.8 times more likely to be living in out-of-home care than non-Indigenous children
  • The number of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in care will more than treble within 20 years unless urgent action is taken to put a stop to this trend
  • From 2010 to 2018, the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in child death statistics has grown from a rate ratio of 1.84 to 2.23
  • Across Australia, only 67% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in care live with family, kin or other Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers
  • Only 2% of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children commenced receiving an intensive family support service in 2015-16, a rate well below their rate of contact with statutory child protection services
Taking these figures into account, it is unbelievable that only 17% of overall child protection funding across Australia is invested in support services for children and their families.
Speaking at the launch of the report, the Family Matters Co-Chair Natalie Lewis said, “Twenty years ago, the Bringing them Home report brought public and political awareness to the destructive impact of the Stolen Generations on communities, families and children – a historical pain that has caused trauma with lasting impacts. We cannot allow the history of trauma to devastate yet another generation of our children”.
The report compares the performance of child protection systems administered by each state and territory and highlights where some promising developments are occurring. This includes Queensland.
“What we really need is governments to resource our vision for a better future for our children,” Natalie Lewis said. “Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have been forthcoming with solutions to these issues for many, many years. We need to work together now to prevent another generation of children growing up separated from their family, culture and connection to country.”
Click here to access a copy of the Family Matters Report 2017.
Click here to download a snapshot version. 
PeakCare urges our Members to print and plaster multiple copies of the snapshot report on your office walls and not remove them until the future prospects for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, young people and families improve. 

Click here to find out how YOU can support the Family Matters campaign. But don’t bother if ‘lip-service’ is all you intend contributing.

Candidates standing for election to PeakCare’s Board

Once again, the number of candidates standing for election to PeakCare’s Board exceeds the number of vacated positions. The five candidates standing for election to fill three vacated positions include Ms Sally Kelynack (UnitingCare Queensland), Mr Brad Swan (Life Without Barriers), Ms Lynn Walker (Safe Pathways), Ms Janet Wight (Youth Advocacy Centre) and Mr Darren Young (Mission Australia).
On Thursday, 31st November, Voting Delegates of all Member organisations were sent instructions about authorising a person to serve as their proxy in the event that they are unable to attend the Annual General Meeting being held at 4.30pm on Wednesday, 6th December at Riverside Receptions, 50 Oxlade Drive, New Farm. Make sure that your organisation’s opinion counts and your Voting Delegate is attending the event or, if not, has properly assigned their proxy to another person.
Click here to read the submitted Candidate Election Statements.

AHRC child safe organisations consultation draft released

The Australian Human Rights Commission has released the consultation draft of their National statement of principles for child safe organisations. The draft sets out 10 principles which collectively show that a child safe organisation is one that creates a culture, adopts strategies and takes action to promote child wellbeing and prevent harm to children and young people.The Commission is seeking feedback from all relevant sectors and can be contacted via email at

Platform18 Primary Health Care Service

Primary18 is a free and confidential primary health care service operating out of the Lady Cilento Children's Hospital in South Brisbane for young people aged 15-18 years who are under child protection orders. Primary18 provides health assessments and support services. An outreach service is also available for those who cannot visit the hospital. Referrals can be made by a young person directly, by support staff or by a child safety service centre. Download the referral form or view the flyer for further details. To contact the service, phone 3068 2660 or email

Transgender teens no longer need court permission to access hormone therapy

The Family Court of Australia has ruled that trans youth will no longer have to seek to access Hormone Replacement Therapy via the courts. Until now, parents could not consent to a medical procedure for their child if it was non-therapeutic, there was a significant risk of making the wrong decision, and it had irreversible consequences. This included Hormone Replacement Therapy. Due to the new ruling, trans youth will now be able to access hormone therapies with permission from their parents or guardians, and their doctor. The ruling was a response to Re Kelvin, a legal case brought forward by the father of a 16-year-old transgender boy, to determine whether the Family Court should actually be involved in the process of hormone treatment for trans youth. 

YANQ 2017 AGM announced

Youth Affairs Network Queensland's (YANQ) 2017 Annual General Meeting will be held at 3:30pm on Friday, 8th December at 326 Montague Road, West End, BrisbaneAs well as the formal AGM process, there will be a short presentation of initial results from the Youth Sector Survey 2017. To attend, RSVP by emailing or to become a member, click here.

What's OK at home?

Domestic Violence Resource Centre Victoria has developed a resource site called What's OK at home? to help young people understand what family violence is, why it happens, how to recognise it and how to offer support to others experiencing it. The site includes sections on what to do when violence is taking place, how to stay safe, and how to deal with ongoing violence. The site also includes a parallel hub for adults to offer support to young people experiencing violence in the home, which includes information about identifying violence, the law, contact numbers for services and guidance on how to talk to children and young people about their experiences.

Innovative children's social care program evaluation

The UK Department for Education has published a report that provides an overview of the evaluation of the children’s social care innovation program in England 2014 to 2016. Findings from 45 project evaluations include 24 of the 45 project evaluations reporting reductions in children in care, children identified as children in need, children in residential care, and increased reunification with birth families. Recommendations for practice include using a systemic, family-focused, strengths-based approach that supports families and young people to take more responsibility for their own lives; multi-professional teams including specialist workers in substance abuse, domestic abuse, mental health, child sexual exploitation, female genital mutilation and offending; and providing consistent support to parents, young people and foster carers through one consistent ‘key worker’. Read the report.

Improving mental health and wellbeing support for children

The UK's Social Care Institute for Excellence has released a resource hub aimed at supporting the emotional and mental wellbeing of children and young people not living in the care of their birth families. The hub includes details of a report into improving mental health support for children and young people, as well as an accompanying set of recommendations, key risks and quality statements drawn from the report. The hub also contains practice advice and tools, a dedicated site for young people to access support, and a collection of messages and feedback from children and young people in care and care leavers on what types of help and support they found useful.

Value for money and evaluation resource sheet

Child Family Community Australia (CFCA) has developed a resource sheet on program evaluation. The resource explores the topic of 'value for money' in program evaluation, advantages and disadvantages, and how to implement the process as a facet within existing evaluation frameworks. For more information about other evaluation approaches, see CFCA's series on research and evaluation.

TACT: The Accidental Counsellor Training
Brisbane - Wednesday, 6th December
Presented by Amovita

The TACT program has been designed for those who are not employed in the role of a trainer counsellor, but are required to provide similar support to clients. This presentation will assist participants when they find themselves in a counselling role ‘by accident’. The program will explore the impact of stress and resilience and develop and review a framework in which participants can look after themselves and the client in distress. This program will provide participants with the necessary skills and tools to be able to respond appropriately, effectively and efficiently when they are the first point of contact for a distressed client or when there may not be a trained qualified counsellor or practitioner immediately available to refer the client to. Click here for more details and to register.

1800RESPECT More than 'Revenge Pornography'
Webinar - Monday, 4th December

1800RESPECT, the National Sexual Assault Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service, will be hosting a webinar on image-based abuse on at 1:00pm - 1:45pm AEDT presented by Dr Asher Flynn, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, School of Social Sciences, Monash University, and Dr Nicola Henry, Associate Professor & Vice-Chancellor's Principal Research Fellow, Centre for Global Research, RMIT University. The webinar will explore the prevalence and impacts of image-based abuse, the current legal and non-legal responses available to those who have experienced image-based abuse in Australia, including advice on having the image removed with or without legal intervention. Register here.

STOP Domestic Violence Conference
Melbourne - Monday, 4th to Wednesday, 6th December

The official program has been launched for the 3rd annual 2017 STOP Domestic Violence Conference with over 120 workshops, speakers and presentations. Day 1 Keynote speakers include Julie Inman Grant, Children’s eSafety Commissioner, Office of Children’s eSafety Commission, Ms Jennifer Hoffman, Commissioner for Victims of Crime, Department of Justice, Western Australia, Dr Rae Kaspiew, Senior Research Fellow, Australian Institute of Family Studies, Assistant Commissioner, Dean McWhirter, Family Violence Command, Victoria Police, Ms Fiona McCormack, CEO, Domestic Violence Victoria and Dr Michael Salter, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, Western Sydney University. All attendees will be able to view all speaker podcasts and PowerPoint presentations after the conference. Scholarships to attend the conference are open until Monday, 30th October. Register to attend the conference now; early bird prices end Monday, 23rd October.

Yarning Up on Trauma
Richmond - Monday, 4th to Friday, 8th December

Yarning Up on Trauma is an intensive five day course presented by Berry St Childhood Institute for those who want to learn practical ways to better work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, their families and communities that have experienced individual trauma, family trauma, community trauma and historical/cultural trauma. Yarning Up on Trauma uses a holistic model to understand trauma which is in contrast to many Western perspectives which focus primarily on the traumatised individual. In working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and communities, it is necessary to consider not only the impact of trauma on the individual but also on their families, community and culture. Find out more or register now.

Visit the Events page on our website for other opportunities in the sector. You can also email your Professional Development opportunities so that we may promote them through future editions of eNews.

DV Specialist Worker, Safer Lives Mobile Service - Micah Projects

Micah Projects is seeking a Domestic Violence Specialist Worker to join the Safer Lives Mobile Service. This position is part of an after-hours domestic violence crisis response to individuals who have been referred to Safer Lives as victims of domestic violence. This position is permanent, part time with a minimum of 30.4 hours of work available per week and is classified under the SCHADS Award 2010 – Level 3. Find out more details and how to apply. Applications close 5pm Thursday, 7th December.

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PeakCare Queensland
PO Box 159
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Click here to apply to become a PeakCare member or supporter. Membership with PeakCare will ensure your organisation is involved in the development of the child protection sector.