Child protection legislation

The Child Protection Act 1999 is the legal framework guiding the Department of Children, Youth Justice and Multicultural Affairs in child protection.

Core principles of the Act in relation to child protection are:

  • the welfare and best interests of the child are paramount
  • the preferred way of ensuring a child's welfare is through support of the child's family
  • intervention is not to exceed the level necessary to protect the child
  • family participation in planning and decision making for children
  • consultation with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander agencies in decision-making regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children
  • children and families have a right to information
  • services are to be culturally appropriate
  • coordination, consultation and collaboration with families, other professionals, agencies and the community
  • accountability of the department.