They've gotta listen :Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in out of home care

Tim Moore
Bindi Bennett
Morag McArthur
Institute of Child Protection Studies

A report for the ACT Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services

Abstract

In August 2004, the ACT Government in response to The Territory as Parent Report: A Review of the Safety of Children in Care of ACT and the ACT Child Protection Management (“Vardon”) Report developed an Implementation Strategy outlining a 2-3 year reform program for the care and protection of children and young people, their families and carers in the ACT. A key goal of the implementation strategy was to ‘Improve service responses for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people and their families’ and to ‘Strengthen participation of children and young people in decision-making that affects their lives’ (ACT DHCS 2006, p2). This project related to these aims and built upon work completed by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Services (ATSIS) and the Vardon Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Reference Group. The project aimed to: Expand and enhance service delivery responses; Expand and enhance consultation mechanisms for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people to be heard; Document real experiences through case studies; and Provide a qualitative evaluation of service delivery as reported by participants.