16 November 2018
A call for greater support for children and young people living in the most highly vulnerable circumstances was a key element of the communique released by the Australian and New Zealand Children’s Commissioners and Guardians (ANZCCG) following their biannual forum held in Adelaide 13–14 November.
These are children and young people who:
- are unaccompanied and homeless
- have been involved with the child protection system but not subject to an order
- have a disability that falls outside current service planning/provision
- have neuropsychological issues such as intellectual disabilities, FASD or trauma-related disability and behaviours of concern.
The ANZCCG communique said these children require much greater policy attention and access to specialist and mainstream program support.
The forum also noted the work of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and acknowledged the National Apology to Victims and Survivors of Institutional Child Sexual Abuse called for a significant and sustained effort to implement all of the recommendations from the royal commission.
In response to the overrepresentation of Indigenous children and young people in disadvantaged circumstances, the forum called for the appointment of Commissioners in each jurisdiction who are Indigenous and can provide particular leadership on issues disproportionately affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander or Maori children and young people.
Read the full communique (PDF)
The communique was released by:
- Commissioner for Children and Young People, Helen Connolly (SA)
- Guardian for Children and Young People, Penny Wright (SA)
- Children's Commissioner Colleen Gwynne (NT)
- Interim Commissioner for Children and Young People, David Clements (Tas)
- Principal Commissioner for Children and Young People, Liana Buchanan (Vic)
- Public Advocate and Children & Young People Commissioner, Jodie Griffiths-Cook (ACT)
- Public Guardian Natalie, Siegel-Brown (Qld)
- Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People, Justin Mohamed (Vic)
- Commissioner for Children and Young People, Colin Pettit (WA)
- Advocate for Children and Young People, Andrew Johnson (NSW)
- Children’s Guardian Janet Schore,r (NSW)
- National Children’s Commissioner, Megan Mitchell
- Children’s Commissioner, Judge Andrew Becroft (NZ)