Child protection

We are committed to achieving transformational change for some of Queensland's most vulnerable children and young people.

Our focus is on delivering the right services at the right time to support families and keep children safely at home. This means working in partnership with peak bodies, service providers and communities to deliver the best outcomes for all Queensland children and their families.

The work we do is complex and critical, and we are looking for empathetic, responsible and trustworthy people who have a strong desire to make a difference in the lives of children and young people.

Our employees enjoy an environment where they are listened to and trusted. We encourage our Child Safety Officers to learn and grow and we provide the support they need to achieve their goals.

Building a career in child protection with our department offers many rewards and challenges through a diverse range of pathways, whether it's dealing directly with children and young people, or helping behind the scenes to ensure we stay on track to support vulnerable families.

We employ across a variety of child protection roles, from Child Safety Support Officers to Senior Practitioners.

Roles in child protection

Child Safety Support Officer

Our Child Safety Support Officers (CSSO) work within a multi-disciplinary team and provide individualised, high-quality and culturally appropriate support to children and families who require statutory child protection intervention.

This may include facilitation of positive family connection, referrals and advocacy for services, parent coaching and support of 'transition from care' plans.

They work collaboratively with key stakeholders, children and parents to build effective safety and support networks, including connection to extended family and community.

CSSOs also provide comprehensive casework support and advice to assist in decision-making about the safety and protective needs of children where there are complex child protection concerns. This includes preparing and maintaining quality case records in accordance with departmental case management requirements.

Working in this role provides an excellent grounding for study and career advancement to professional Child Safety Officer roles.

Child Safety Officer

Our Child Safety Officers (CSO) are responsible for providing statutory child protection services including assessment, intervention, casework and case management in accordance with legislation and practice guidelines.

A CSO works in teams (often multi-disciplinary) based in a child safety service centre covering a specific geographical area.

Interpersonal skills are critical for a CSO to build relationships and interact with various professionals to ensure children are protected and families are provided with the support they need.

They work within a professional team and enjoy the support and supervision from experienced team members. Our CSOs are mentored and encouraged to pursue continuous learning opportunities throughout their career.

Senior Child Safety Officer

Our Senior Child Safety Officers (SCSO) are responsible for ensuring the safety, belonging and wellbeing of all children and young people throughout the child protection process.

A SCSO is responsible for delivering statutory child protection services including assessment, intervention, casework and case management for complex cases, as well as delivering services in accordance with legislation, practice guidelines, and a strength-based framework for practice.

They are required to work with CSOs and CSSOs on complex and sensitive cases.

This role provides mentoring and support to develop the skills and knowledge of newly appointed and less experienced CSOs and CSSOs.

They work in teams (often multi-disciplinary) based in a child safety service centre covering a specific geographical area.

Senior Team Leader

Our Senior Team Leaders (STL) manage a team of professional and operational staff to ensure the delivery of high-quality child protection services.

This includes assessment, intervention, casework, and case management in accordance with legislation and practice guidelines to children, young people, families and communities.

A STL works in a collaborative, integrated, multi-disciplinary team that may include representation from other agencies.

Senior Practitioner

Our Senior Practitioners are responsible for providing specialist advice, guidance and oversight to ensure quality child protection services are maintained.

They ensure assessment, intervention, casework and case management are delivered by the child safety service centre team to a high standard and in accordance with legislation and practice guidelines.

They provide practice supervision individually and in groups to the CSOs and SCSOs.

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Mandatory qualifications

The department's frontline professional officer roles (Child Safety Officer, Senior Child Safety Officer, Senior Team Leader and Senior Practitioner) must hold a relevant qualification from an accredited Australian tertiary institution, or a comparable overseas qualification.

There are two qualification pathways to becoming a Child Safety Officer.

If you have experience in a similar area, such as social work, psychology or welfare, you can take your career to the next level by joining our department as a Child Safety Officer.

If you are interested in making a career change to child protection but you are not sure if you meet the eligibility requirements of the role, you can send your resume and university transcripts to our Recruitment team at for an informal assessment of your qualifications

If you have worked as a Child Safety Officer previously in Queensland and want to return to work, you'll automatically meet the current eligibility requirements for all child protection roles.

We will consider overseas qualifications if the qualification is assessed as comparable to a relevant Australian qualification. You must submit your academic transcripts and evidence of your qualification assessment with your application.

To find out more about the eligibility requirements, contact Recruitment on (07) 3097 5363 or

Students studying a relevant degree are encouraged to consider a student placement where they will receive comprehensive training and support.

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