CSPM July 2010 updates

Child Safety Practice Manual - CSPM_Jul2010

Released online on 05 July 2010.

This release includes practice changes and amendments to the following chapters:

  • Chapter 1. Intake
  • Chapter 2. Investigation and assessment
  • Chapter 3. Ongoing intervention
  • Chapter 4. Case planning
  • Chapter 5. Children in out-of-home care
  • Chapter 6. Intervention with parental agreement
  • Chapter 7. Support service cases
  • Chapter 8. Regulation of care
  • Chapter 9. Matters of concern
  • Chapter 10. General

Chapter 1: Intake

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 1.1 Gather information from the notifier:
    • Inclusion of generic wording which reflects the fact that intake will be undertaken by both CSSCs and Regional Intake Services.
    • Information included about the new requirement to refer to the project officer, Statewide Services when intake information relates to unaccompanied humanitarian minors (UHM).
    • Inclusion of a reference to a new procedure in Chapter 2. for responding to information received via an Electronic Transfer of Court Results report (ETCR report).
  • 1.2 Record a general enquiry: Clarification of the recording requirements.
  • 1.4 Conduct a pre-notification check, if required:
    • More detail regarding who can be contacted for a pre-notification check (PNC).
    • An increase to the timeframe from 24 hours to 48 hours for decision-making.
    • Advice to staff about not using PNCs to commence the investigation and assessments (I&A).
    • Change of delegation to include team leaders (in addition to CSSC managers) as able to authorise urgent criminal history checks (Child Protection Act 1999, section 95).
  • 2.6 Decide the response:
    • Strengthens the consideration of referrals to family support agencies following the recording of a Child Concern Report.
    • Changes to the age range for RAI referrals from 0-10 years to the new age range 0-18 years.
  • 3.2 General Enquiry: Inclusion of a reference to the procedure for contacting the Interstate Liaison Officer at Court Services Unit for matters requiring referral to another jurisdiction and the removal of references to this procedure from '3.3 Child concern report' and '3.4 Notification'.
  • 4.1 Provide feedback to government and non government agencies: Inclusion of the requirement to provide feedback in relation to Child Safety's response and rationale, to SCAN core agency notifiers within five days.
  • WI 1. What if the child protection concerns are about a child in another jurisdiction?: Clarifies the need to record a general enquiry for interstate referrals of child protection concerns, and clarifies when to record an interstate alert, versus an interstate notification (address known versus when the family's whereabouts is unknown).
  • WI 7. What if the child is an unaccompanied humanitarian minor?: Inclusion of a new 'What if', requiring staff to contact the Unaccompanied Humanitarian Minor (UHM) program officer, Statewide Services, prior to completing the screening criteria.
  • WI 8. What if child protection concerns are received from the Family Court or the Federal Court of Australia?: Updated Information in relation to when a 'Form 4 - Notice of Child Abuse or Family Violence' or a 'Notification under section 67ZA Family Law Act 1975' is received from the Family Court or Federal Magistrates Court of Australia, previously in Chapter 10.16, to ensure staff are aware of the procedure for responding to such matters.

Chapter 2: Investigation and assessment

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 1.1 Plan the investigation and assessment: Inclusion of new requirement to refer to the UHM project officer, Statewide Services, when planning investigation and assessments in relation to UHMs.
  • 2.1 Commence the investigation and assessment: Inclusion of the requirement for staff to clearly record a rationale for reasons for delays in commencing investigation and assessments.
  • 2.2 Inform the parents about the allegations of harm: Provides new information about privacy considerations in relation to criminal matters. Clarifies what information can be shared with a parent about the criminal history of another parent or household member.
  • 2.3 Interview and sight the child: New requirement to refer to the UHM project officer, Statewide Services when commencing an investigation and assessment in relation to an UHM.
  • 2.7 Gather information from other sources:
    • Information about responding to the receipt of the ETCR reports about children subject to Child Safety intervention and referring them to a new 'What if' and practice resource.
    • Inclusion of a new process for gathering information from Medicare Australia in line with the information sharing protocol with Medicare Australia.
    • Change of delegation to include team leaders as able to approve urgent criminal history checks (section 95).
  • 4.2 Determine whether there will be a referral to another agency: Includes references to strengthen the referral to family support service where the outcome of the I&A is that the child is not in need of protection.
  • WI 4. What if a joint investigation with the Queensland Police Service is required?: Clarifies that ICARE interviews conducted without a representative from the QPS are to continue, if ceasing the interview would hinder the provision of information and safety of the child. Previously staff were required to cease the interview and contact the QPS.
  • WI 6. What if Child Safety is contacted about additional concerns for a child?: Clarifies the requirements for recording of additional notified concerns.
  • WI 12. What if a child and family cannot be located?: Includes new procedures for contacting and gathering information from Medicare Australia and Child Support Agency via Data Management Services.
  • WI 19. What if information is received via an Electronic Transfer of Court Results reports?: New procedure for responding to information received via an ETCR report.

Chapter 3: Ongoing intervention

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • General: Includes the requirement for staff to record the views of the Recognised Entity in the appropriate form in ICMS.
  • 1.1 Consider the type of intervention required: Includes a new requirement to refer to the UHM project officer, Statewide Services, prior to deciding the type of ongoing intervention required in relation to UHMs.
  • 2.3 Apply for a supervision order: Includes advice that directions given in writing to parents subject to a supervision order are reviewable by Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) if the parent believes the instructions are not consistent with the directions in the order.
  • 3.1 Undertake case planning and review processes: Includes information received about how ETCR reports should be considered in case planning and review processes.
  • WI 3. What if an ongoing intervention case needs to be transferred to another CSSC?:
    • Inclusion of a change to the procedural requirements, to reflect that the CSSC manager with case responsibility for a child is responsible for the approval of a kinship carer in another geographical location.
    • Includes references to the Placement Services Units.
  • WI 4. What if assistance is required with social housing?:
    • Inclusion of new procedures for responding to information or concerns received via an ETCR reports.
    • Clarifies when Child Safety can provide supporting documentation to parents who self- refer for social housing.

Chapter 4: Case planning

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 4.1 Actively implement the case plan: Inclusion of new procedures for responding to information or concerns received via an ETCR report for children who are subject to ongoing intervention, and reference to the new procedure in Chapter 2.
  • 5.3 Assess whether reunification can occur: Provides new information about privacy considerations in relation to criminal matters. Clarifies what information can be shared with a parent about the criminal history of another parent or household member.

Chapter 5: Children in out-of-home care

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 1.8 Assess the provision of placement information to parents: Inclusion of a new letter to carers, in circumstances where a child when a child is removed in accordance with the Child Protection Act 1999, section 89.
  • 2.1 Obtain a birth certificate for a child:
    • Clarifies the requirement for every child in out of home care, subject to a child protection order, to have an original certified birth certificate on file.
    • Clarifies the requirement to provide a child at 18 with the original birth certificate and retain a certified copy on file.
  • 2.9 Plan and support the young persons transition from care into adulthood: Reference to an updated practice guide to complete a Cultural Support plan, including information on Aboriginality Certificates.
  • 3.6 Make medical decisions, including dental: Clarifying that the Director-General will not provide consent for end of life decisions where the parents retain guardianship.
  • 4.1 Conclude the child's placement in out of home care:
    • Inclusion of a procedural requirement that, where a child is removed from a carer and it is age appropriate, the child be given written notice of the removal decision and has 28 days to seek a review of the decision.
    • Includes information about the requirement to provide a child with written notice of reasons for removal and their right of review.
    • Includes information about carer review rights when a decision is made to remove a child from a carer (Child Protection Act 1999, section 89).
  • WI 3. What if a child is to be removed from an out-of-home care placement?: Includes reference to new letter, 'Letter to carer - removal of a child (section 89)'.
  • WI 4. What if family contact needs to occur in a correctional facility?: Includes amendments to clarify the roles and responsibilities of both Child Safety and the Department of Corrections staff for family contact in a correctional facility.
  • WI 7. What if a child wishes to participate in a high or very high risk activity?:
  • Clarifies that the guardian is responsible for the decision for a child to participate in a high risk or very high risk activity.
  • WI 8. What if a decision about end of life medical treatment is required?: Clarifies that the DG will not provide consent for end of life decisions where the parents retain guardianship.
  • WI 10. What if a child is also subject to youth justice intervention?: Simplifies the information sharing process with Youth Justice Services.

Chapter 6: Intervention with parental agreement

  • Inclusion of a reference to a new practice resource 'Intervention with parental agreement case closure checklist'.

Chapter 7: Support service cases

  • Information has been updated to include transition from care (TFC) amendments, reinforcing that TFC planning begins at 15 years and may extend beyond age 18.

Chapter 8: Regulation of care

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 3.1 Decide the outcome of the application for approval:
    • Inclusion of a change to the procedural requirements, to reflect that the CSSC manager with case responsibility for a child is responsible for the approval of a kinship carer in another geographical location.
    • Includes new references to the Placement Services Units.
  • WI 1. What if the applicant requires provisional approval?: Change of delegation to include team leaders (in addition to CSSC managers) as able to authorise urgent criminal history checks (Child Protection Act 1999, section 95).
  • WI 3. What if an external party requests or requires personal information or history about a foster or kinship carer application?: Clarifies what information can be shared about carer applicants with foster and kinship care services and external assessors.
  • WI 11. What if a provisionally approved carer's certificate of approval requires amendment, suspension or cancellation?: Clarifies the requirement for carers to provide the original certificate of approval within two days of a written request for its return by a CSSC.

Chapter 9: Matters of concern

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant sections of the chapter.

  • 1.3 Gather information: Includes information advising how to respond to information received via ETCR reports which identifies a carer involved in a criminal or civil court matter.

Chapter 10: General procedures

The practice changes and amendments are outlined under the relevant chapter.

  • 10.4 Information sharing: Simplifies the information sharing process with Youth Justice Services.
  • 10.5 Referral for active intervention services: Changes the age range from 0-10 years to the new age range 0-18 years.
  • 10.7 Recording alerts for a child and family: Amends the previous procedure to allow staff to use the self-harm risk alert, which is now active in ICMS.
  • 10.13 Complaints management: Updated to reflect the new the department complaints policy.
  • 10.16 Family Law Courts: Reflects that the CSSC manager is not required to sign section 15(2) letters about the outcome of investigation and assessments.