It was really interesting to hear the Youth Panel reflect on their biggest issues and how these mirrored many of the same issues parents have identified – failing of policy, location, access and navigation of services (homelessness, language, mental health, after hours/crisis, drug and alcohol) and trauma informed training for support services. Also their proposed solutions were again in line with those parents have discussed.
It's really important for us to come to events like this and share our experiences so all services can hear the effect their work is having on the ground. We are committed to changing the connotation that parents are the 'bad guys'. Based on our own experiences, and those we've heard from other parents on the committee, we would love to engage with departments such as Health and Education because they are the front line services in most of our cases and should be actively involved in the strategy for national child safety and well being.
Most people seemed to agree that parents, poverty and politics are 3 words that no one likes to bring up - but they need to be addressed if we want to bring about real change."