Children Of Concern Reports Increase By 17%

Children Of Concern Reports Increase By 17%

Queensland Shadow Minister for Child Safety Ted Malone

Big Jump In ‘At Risk’ Children

Victor P Taffa

A Big Jump in reported children at risk has prompted the State Opposition to call for an overhaul of child safety management and a change of leadership at the very top.

Shadow Minister for Child Safety Ted Malone said the Government’s own figures on ‘children of concern reports’ showed a big increase of nearly 17 % across the state* in the past year.

“It’s a deeply disturbing trend.” Mr. Malone said.

“From the end of December 2009 to the end of September 2010 less than a year there’s been a huge increase in the overall number of child concern reports.”

 

“There’s some real hot spots and not just in Far North Queensland. It just seems to be getting worse and worse under the Bligh Government and Minister Phil Reeves.” Mr. Malone said.

Mr. Malone, a father and grandfather, who’s been involved with local child support and youth development programs for many years, said there were serious management issues in the Department.

“Despite record spending by this Government, the situation is getting worse and there’s no sign of improvement.”

“Its past time the Bligh Government took Child Safety seriously and the first step should be for the Premier to pull herself away from the TV cameras and replace Phil Reeves with a Minister who will take this vital issue seriously.” Mr. Malone said.

Queensland children subject to child concern report, by region (source Dept of Communities)

Region (a)

Year Ending

31 December 2009 31 March 2010 30 June 2010 30 September 2010 Percentage Increase

Brisbane                                  5,564        5,424        5,586       5,880     316          5.7%
Central Queensland            6,873        7,221        7,822      8,119      1,246      18.1%
Far North Queensland      3,988         4,352        4,852      5,071     1,083     27.2%
North Coast                            6,147       6,102        6,943      7,530      1,383      22.5%
North Queensland                5,741       6,361        6,636      6,997      1,256      21.8%
South East Queensland       9,472      9,510       10,530   11,003     1,531       16.2%
South West Queensland      7,701     8,572       9,004      9,025       1,324       17.2%

Other (b)                                   3,575     3,677        3,707     3,688           113          3.2%

Total                                       49,061   51,219      55,080   57,313      8,252   16.8%