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CYF delays ticking timebombs

CYF delays ticking timebombs

One reported case of child abuse has waited two years to be assigned to a social worker, says National’s Associate Welfare spokeswoman (CYFS), Anne Tolley.

Answers to Parliamentary questions also reveal that two ‘Urgent’ cases have waited since February 2005, and a total of 63 ‘Urgent’ cases from 2005 are still waiting for attention.

“I understand that all cases brought to CYFS attention are sorted into four categories, but abuse or neglect cases identified in the ‘Urgent’ category are supposed to be allocated within seven days – not two years or 14 months.

“These cases could be ticking timebombs – they need attention.

“It is clear the ‘Urgent’ category is by far the largest group of outstanding abuse notifications for CYFS, with more than 800 cases waiting for further action as of the end of June this year.

“CYFS protocols say they should be investigated within seven days, but it is clear this is just not happening.

“Before the Government begins a $14 million anti-family violence awareness campaign – which will inevitably raise the number of abuse cases reported – Labour should make sure the infrastructure is in place to deal with the extra calls.

“These figures show they are well behind with the workload now. At this rate, the campaign will be pointless because they will not be able to cope with the extra work it will create,” says Mrs Tolley.


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