Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Review backs changes to the landscape of child protection


27 May 2014

Review backs changes to the landscape of child protection

The Ministry of Social Development today released the findings of the Workload and Casework Review.

Commissioned last year by Chief Executive, Brendan Boyle, the review was carried out by the Office of the Chief Social Worker, with the involvement of the PSA.

Mr Boyle says the review is an honest and thorough analysis of the day-to-day reality for frontline social workers.

“Put simply, we’ve found that some of our social workers have too much on their plates, and this has gotten in the way of the most important part of their work – spending time with children and families. Social workers do a very tough job – one of the toughest in the country – and they deserve our support and praise. The findings from this review will make it easier for them to do what they do best.”

While the review recommended increasing the number of social workers, it recommended a systems change first before the exact number could be determined.

Work is already under way to alleviate the pressure on those with caseloads that are deemed unmanageable. As well as that, a Ministry-wide modernisation project will reduce the amount of time social workers spend on reporting and administration, thus freeing them up to spend more time with families. This will involve the appointment of a dedicated Associate Deputy Chief Executive of Child, Youth and Family to fully focus on modernisation.

The review also found that Child, Youth and Family is working with a lot of families who don’t meet the threshold for statutory intervention.

“Over the past six years, we’ve seen a six-fold increase in notifications into Child, Youth and Family, and our social workers have done a tremendous job responding to them,” says Mr Boyle.

“However, this has affected the time that should be spent helping our most vulnerable children and young people. We welcome the changes that are taking place at a legislative and government level – which will help us to focus on our core business, that is helping children who have been abused or at great risk of abuse.”

Government reform includes the establishment of Children’s Teams to help struggling families before they get to a point where Child, Youth and Family should become involved. Legislation is currently before Parliament to make Chief Executives of government departments, such as Health and Education, accountable for children’s wellbeing.

Mr Boyle is confident that stronger inter-agency work, as well as the changes soon to be made to Child, Youth and Family’s systems and practices, will go a long way to ensuring a better future for vulnerable children.

“New Zealand is not alone in this. Similar changes are taking place in comparable countries such as the UK and Australia. The message is clear – children’s wellbeing is everybody’s business. Stronger inter-agency collaboration on cases will make a huge difference.”

The review is available on the Ministry of Social Development website, www.msd.govt.nz


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news