Why it Matters

Victoria’s family services department has come under fire owing to the number of children who ‘fell between the tracks’ and were not rescued from abusive home environments, resulting in tragic suicides.  https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-11-13/victorian-child-suicide-report-examines-family-services/11694738

I believe that in these cases, the parents are in as much need of support as the children. But separating the children from their parents has been shown not to succeed. The only way to rehabilitate families in crisis is for social welfare services to support them in ways that respect these families’ dignity. It is not a good idea to take the children away. It is not a good idea to send parents a letter telling them to engage with welfare services.

They won’t.

Somehow these parents need to feel valued, despite the maladaptive coping strategies they’ve often adopted. They ought to be valued for their strengths, not vilified, intimidated and humiliated by Centrelink and child welfare services.






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