PeakCare and the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak (QATSICPP) is pleased to release the report on our survey findings, On the proposed trial to extend payments to Foster Carers until young people in their care turn 21

Background to the report

Following the announcement on 17th June 2020 of the Liberal National Party’s (LNP’s) plans for overhauling Queensland’s child protection system, PeakCare and QATSICPP conducted a survey to gauge stakeholders’ views about the plans. The survey was released on 19th June and closed on 10th July.

PeakCare and QATSICPP will look for similar opportunities to seek feedback about the policy platforms of other political parties as they are released. Pleasingly, the findings of the survey are now being used to inform bipartisan dialogue agreed to by Premier Palaszczuk and Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington about improvements that can be made to Queensland’s child protection system.

About this report and the reports to follow

An overview of the survey findings was released on 24th August, as a precursor to a series of reports that will delve, with greater detail, into specific matters addressed within the LNP’s proposals. The first in this series of reports, On the question of re-naming the Child Safety Department, the Child Protection Force was released on 3 September 2020.

This is the second report in this series and addresses the question included within our survey – The LNP proposes to “extend payments to foster carers for children in their care until they are 21 under a $4 million trial that will bring Queensland in-line with most other states”. Do you agree with this proposal?

About your consideration of the survey findings

As noted in the report that overviews the survey findings, “it would be a mistake to treat the survey findings as a ‘poll’ that simply measured numbers of people who favoured or did not favour strategies proposed by the LNP”.  As presented in the overview report, its true value will come from the consideration that can be given to the commentary provided by the survey respondents.

For example, within the first report that addressed the proposal to change the name of the Child Safety Department to the Child Protection Force, a common theme that emerged in the comments made by those who supported the proposal concerned the notion that the name change would facilitate front-line child protection workers being given a status and recognition similar to that afforded to other professional groups such as Officers of the Queensland Police Service and Health practitioners. Irrespective of whether or not you think this would be achieved by changing the title of the Child Safety Department, the issue of concern about why some believe that child protection workers are not given proper recognition or not awarded a status similar to other professional groups is one that requires focussed attention. Why is it that some of the survey respondents think this and what can or should be done about it?

The same will apply when you read through the commentary provided by the survey respondents in this report. It is important to consider the range of reasons why respondents have either supported or not supported the proposal and, very importantly, the reservations and/ or qualifications they have placed on their responses.

Your views about this report

Do the findings recorded in this report surprise you or not? Which of the views reported on do you agree or disagree with? Enter your comments below, anonymously if you prefer.