Attorney-General, minister ‘deeply concerned’ by ‘horrific’ findings of ABC’s child protection investigation


Federal Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus and Social Services Minister Amanda Rishworth say they are “extremely concerned” by the findings of a nationwide ABC investigation that revealed children were being raped and neglected in government care.

Mr Dreyfus and Ms Rishworth said they had contacted the National Children’s Commissioner to see what action could be taken to protect children in care.

More than 700 people came forward as part of the investigation into child protection, revealing some children were at risk of more harm in care than before.

More than 200 of those were current and former child protection workers with intimate knowledge about how the system operates. Some alleged departmental misconduct and manipulation of statistics about children in care.

National Children’s Commissioner Anne Hollonds has also reacted to the investigation, saying the system was “really struggling” with its purpose to protect children and “desperately needs reform”.

“It’s shocking how commonly one hears these stories.

“These are the most vulnerable children in this country and they’ve been removed from their families for their own safety and then unfortunately we find that they have been abused or harmed in various ways within the system that was meant to be protecting them.

“And, again, this is a sign that this system desperately needs reform.”

National Children’s Commissioner Ann Hollonds said the child protection system needed “urgent” attention.(ABC News: Greg Bigelow)

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