Child protection legislation reform

The Queensland Government is committed to delivering a child protection and family support system that meets the needs of children and families, now and into the future.

Services provided to vulnerable children and families will be high quality and provided in an efficient, transparent and accountable manner.

This system needs to be underpinned by a rigorous, contemporary legislative framework.

Find out more:

Child Protection Reform and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2022

The Child Protection Reform and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2022 (the Act) was passed in May 2022 to amend both the Child Protection Act 1999 and the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000.

The amendments:

The amendments came into effect in 2 tranches:

  • Tranche 1 – commenced in October 2022
  • Tranche 2 – commenced on 21 May 2023. 

The Act also includes minor amendments to the Disability Services Act 2006 and technical amendments to the Adoption Act 2009. These changes commenced on assent.

Tranche 1 amendments included:

  • extending the renewal term for approved carers from 2 years to 3 years
  • streamlining assessments for existing kinship carers
  • clarifying foster and kinship carer reporting requirements
  • enabling information disclosure in circumstances where:
    • a parent requests information about a child who has died while not under an order
    • a person consents to information about themselves being disclosed
    • police require information about a notifier in certain circumstances
  • providing for certain orders to continue when an application is made to extend, vary, revoke or substitute
  • enabling the Court to hear an appeal before a notice of appeal is served
  • improving consistency in language for the definition of parent throughout the Act.

Tranche 2 amendments:

  • increase children’s rights and strengthen their voices in decisions that affect them
  • require active efforts to apply the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle when making a significant decision about an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander child
  • clarify the definition of ‘kin’ to reflect Aboriginal tradition or Island custom as well as cultural connections
  • redefine the 'partnership principle' to clarify Child Safety’s commitment to working with First Nations peoples and communities
  • clarify Child Safety’s existing commitment to ensure carers have access to support and training
  • establish the framework for a carers’ register
  • clarify how the general principles for ensuring the safety, wellbeing and best interests of children apply when making decisions
  • provide examples of information to be provided to carers and licensed care services to enable informed decision-making
  • clarify that a license may be amended to add or remove a licensed premises
  • require licensees to ensure people performing risk-assessed roles for licensed care services are suitable persons.