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Will it or won’t it happen?

On Monday, 10th August, the Queensland Parliament’s Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee will be conducting a public hearing to inform its consideration of the Child Protection and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2020.  The Bill responds to recommendation 6(b) of Deputy State Coroner Bentley’s findings of the inquest into the death of Mason Jet Lee.  As stated in the explanatory notes, the objectives of the Child Protection and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2020 are to:

  • enhance the approach to permanency under the Child Protection Act 1999
  • clarify that adoption is an option for achieving permanency for children in care, as part of the suite of alternative long-term care options available, and
  • clarify the importance of and promote alternative permanency options for children under a long-term guardianship order to the chief executive of the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women.

As subscribers to eNews are well aware, issues concerning the use of adoption are controversial and there are widely divergent views held about the matter. The high number of people – over 300 – who participated in a forum about the Bill that was jointly hosted by QCOSS, the Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Protection Peak and PeakCare on Friday, 31st July provides an indication of the strength of interest held in the progress of this legislation. This is also reflected in the submissions lodged with the Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee. Click here to read the submissions including the one submitted by PeakCare.

The public hearing will be held from 9.15am to 11.30am on Monday and can be viewed live on the Parliament TV. Click here to view the hearing’s program. The decisions to be made by Parliament about this legislation will have a lifelong impact on many children and families – both now and into the future. The stakes are high and for this reason, PeakCare urges all members of the Legal Affairs and Community Safety Committee to give earnest consideration to all of the information and advice provided to them.

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