To:

The Hon Rachel Sanderson MP

Minister for Child Protection

This annual report will be presented to Parliament to meet the statutory reporting requirements of the Public Sector Act 2009 and the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 and the requirements of Premier and Cabinet Circular PC013 Annual Reporting.

This report is verified to be accurate for the purposes of annual reporting to the Parliament of South Australia.

Submitted on behalf of the Department for Child Protection by:

Fiona Ward
A/Chief Executive

Signed 30 September 2020

Cathy Taylor, Chief Executive of the Department for Child Protection, wearing a black, yellow and green striped jacket.Like every other organisation, in 2019-20 the Department for Child Protection (DCP) faced unprecedented challenges. No one could have anticipated COVID-19 and the impact that this would have on our community. Child protection is an essential service that needed to maintain service delivery throughout the pandemic. We worked proactively with our providers to adapt to new ways of working during COVID-19. Our top priority continues to be the safety and wellbeing of children and young people in care, carers and staff.

I am immensely proud of all that our department has achieved in 2019-20:

  • Released Safe and well: Supporting families, protecting children providing a whole of government framework to progress child protection reform.
  • Developed a new $3 million program to engage three Aboriginal organisations to deliver specialised support to kinship carers of Aboriginal children.
  • Invested in the Sanctuary model of therapeutic care for implementation across all of DCP’s residential homes over the next three years.
  • Published a new Manual of Practice and developed the DCP Practice Approach, establishing a child protection practice approach that is tailored to South Australia’s legislative and cultural context.
  • Established the Expert Aboriginal Child Protection Advisory Committee to assist DCP to achieve its goal of full implementation of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle.
  • Commenced Family Group Conferencing, with an emphasis on cultural safety and responsiveness for Aboriginal families.
  • Delivered contract reform, establishing a dedicated online Contract Management and Licensing System and being the first government agency to enable paperless contract management.
  • Established a multidisciplinary In-care Service, which provides support to kinship carers to assist with understanding children’s development, strengthening relationships, and building capacity for continued care. The Service also provides therapeutic intervention for children and young people in residential care.
  • Developed the DCP Aboriginal Procurement Policy, released on 20 January 2020, setting targets for minimum representation of Aboriginal organisations within DCP’s expenditure.
  • Increased procurement from Aboriginal organisations to 6.3% in 2019-20, with the aim to grow this engagement to 7% by the end of 2021-22.
  • Launched the Carer Charter and established a carer website.

Despite these successes, there’s much more to do. We need to continue to strengthen our commitment to building stronger partnerships as we work with our providers and carers to improve outcomes for children and young people in care.

In presenting this report, I wish to thank the many hard working and dedicated people who have contributed to supporting families, protecting children and investing in their futures. I look forward to continuing to work with our Minister, our staff, partners, carers and clients to achieve better outcomes for children and young people in care.

Cathy Taylor
Chief Executive
Department for Child Protection

Our strategic focus

Our Purpose

The Department for Child Protection’s (DCP) purpose is to keep children and young people in South Australia safe through the administration of the state’s child protection services.

Our Vision

DCP’s vision is for all children and young people to grow up safe, happy, healthy and nurtured to reach their full potential.

Our Values

  • Respect
  • Trust
  • Courage

Our functions, objectives and deliverables

  • DCP has a leadership role in the South Australian Government’s child protection strategy - Safe and well: Supporting families, protecting children, which focuses reform across three areas: supporting, protecting and investing.
  • Achieving practice excellence - Staff are supported to develop and use best practice in their work with children, young people, families and carers.
  • Honouring the Aboriginal Child Placement Principle - We will address the disproportionate number of children in care by involving Aboriginal families and communities in decisions about the care of Aboriginal children and young people.
  • Partnering with carers - Carers are respected and valued as partners in the care team and are supported to meet the needs of children and young people in their care.
  • Supporting our staff - We recruit, develop and support our staff with systems, processes and workplaces that enable them to be effective and efficient in their work and maintain their wellbeing.
  • Working together - We team up with our service partners to improve outcomes for families, children, young people and carers.
  • Designing a care system based on need - The individual needs of children and young people are well understood and inform the services and support we provide.
  • Delivering quality and safety - We are accountable and transparent in the services we provide and invest to strengthen quality and safety.

Our organisational structure

Changes to the agency

During 2019-20 there were no changes to the agency’s structure and objectives as a result of internal reviews or machinery of government changes.

Our Minister

The Honourable Rachel Sanderson MPThe Honourable Rachel Sanderson MP is the Minister for Child Protection.

The Minister is responsible for the care and protection of children and young people in South Australia.

The Minister is also responsible for promoting the wellbeing of children and young people, and supporting early intervention where they may be at risk of harm.

Our Executive team

  • Chief Executive
  • Deputy Chief Executive
  • Lead Psychiatric Director
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Chief Human Resources Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Executive Director, Service Delivery and Practice
  • Regional Director, Northern Region
  • Regional Director, Far North Far West Region
  • Regional Director, Central Region
  • Regional Director, Southern Region
  • Executive Director, Out of Home Care
  • Director, Residential Care
  • Director, Aboriginal Practice
  • Director, Quality and Practice
  • Director, Legal Services and Redress
  • Director, Commissioning, Performance and Disability

Legislation administered by the agency

  • Adoption Act 1988
  • Adoption (General) Regulations 2018
  • Adoptions (Fees) Regulations 2019 (revoked 1 July 2020)
  • Child Protection Review (Powers and Immunities) Act 2002
  • Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017
  • Children and Young People (Safety) Regulations 2017
  • Children’s Protection Law Reform (Transitional Arrangements and Related Amendments) Act 2017 (administered by Department of Human Services)
  • Commission of Inquiry (Children in State Care and Children on APY Lands) Act 2004
  • Family and Community Services Act 1972
  • Family and Community Services Regulations 2009

Performance at a glance

In spite of the challenges experienced during 2019-20, this has been a year of innovation, development and achievement. Significant work has been undertaken in the last year to strongly define the strategic direction and reform focus for child protection within DCP, as well as across government.

In November 2019, the State Government published Safe and well: Supporting families, protecting children. This strategy sets out South Australia’s plan to support vulnerable families to thrive and keep children safe. It brings together reform activities being undertaken across government and includes how we are responding to recommendations of both the Child Protection Royal Commission and the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Abuse.

In 2019, DCP published its three-year strategic plan and the first in a series of three annual action plans detailing how DCP will deliver on its visions for all children and young people to grow up safe, happy, healthy and nurtured to reach their full potential.

A number of other strategic documents have been developed to guide the DCP’s staff, key partners and the sector about DCP’s direction and in specific areas of focus and action.

The first Aboriginal Action Plan 2019-20 was launched committing the department to ambitious action to embed the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle across DCP’s business and child protection practice. The 2020-21 Action Plan has been released to support the department to build on this activity into the future.

In January 2020, Every effort for every child was released and outlines DCP’s three-year plan to reform the in care system for children and young people. Actions are set out across five priority areas to deliver a needs based system, grow family based care, transform non-family based care, improve transition from care and enhance quality and safety.

In February 2020, Investing in their future was released outlining the State Government’s refreshed commitment to providing children and young people in care with priority access to services and programs. This initiative builds on the former Rapid Response program and includes initiatives like early access to preschool from three years, free VACSWIM water safety and survival programs and priority access to dental services and treatments.

As part of DCP’s COVID-19 response a range of measures were implemented to strengthen service delivery going forward:

  • Rapid testing arrangements for children and young people in care, with a focus on high-risk situations such as residential care facilities or children with other health issues.
  • Increased psychological assessment capacity, including bringing a new approved provider on board.
  • Child and Youth Worker exemption availability until 30 September 2020, providing us with extra capacity to care for children and young people in the case of an outbreak that impacts our workforce numbers.
  • Modified licensing processes for residential care that allow a level of self-assessment, reducing the need for physical inspections.
  • Virtual training for carers.

DCP was the first Australian child protection department to identify the need to offer additional supports to carers particularly given the financial pressures experienced as a result of the pandemic. An additional $200 payment was provided to assist carers with the cost of COVID-19 related purchases such as cleaning products, hand sanitiser and soap. DCP workforce mobility was dramatically increased to allow our essential services to continue, including the roll-out of mobile devices/laptops and remote working arrangements for staff.

Communication with the sector was streamlined through dedicated COVID-19 content on the DCP website, topic-based online forums and regular coronavirus updates. The sector provided positive feedback about DCP’s communications and collaborative approach during this time.  Additionally, coronavirus information for carers was published on the online carer platform, allowing staff and the sector to point carers towards a single point of truth. This included a range of resources to support carers spending more time at home and information sheets for how to talk to children and young people about the virus.

During this challenging time, DCP has continued to deliver on our commitment to increase the system’s capacity for family based care, including through the recruitment of 82 primary foster carers.

Children in Care 30 June 16 30 June 17 30 June 18 30 June 19 30 June 20
Foster Care 1261 1333 1434 1536 1641
Kinship Care 1469 1563 1684 1854 2090
Family Day Care N/A N/A 29 28 40
Residential Care 289 388 408 413 413
Independent Living 34 38 47 50 63
Commercial Property 190 162 93 103 123

During 2019-20 DCP worked closely with the Department for Education (DE) to better understand the opportunities to improve educational outcomes for children and young people in care. The two departments have committed to a joint plan of action for the coming year to enhance the way they will work together and ensure children and young people in care are supported to learn and thrive. DE established a Children in Care Service to provide expert support for children and young people in care. To match this support, DCP has nominated Education Champions across service delivery and will work closely with this Children in Care Service on improving education outcomes for children in care.

The National Redress Scheme (NRS) commenced on 1 July 2018. Between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2020, DCP received 492 Requests for Information (RFIs) in relation to 229 Applicants. Approximately 21% of Applicants identified as Aboriginal. Of the applications received by DCP, 120 have had outcomes determined by the NRS. A total of 58 survivors have accepted an offer of redress; and two survivors have sought and received a Direct Personal Response.

Agency contribution to whole of Government objectives

Key objective Agency’s contribution
More jobs
  • Reduced vacancies through targeted recruitment of social workers, case managers and child and youth workers.
  • Maintained Aboriginal employment at 5%, with six additional Aboriginal employees including new Aboriginal traineeships.
  • Upskilled employees in conjunction with the South Australia Government’s Skilling SA initiative.
  • Increased procurement from Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations to 6.3%.
Lower costs
  • Reduced the use of short term labour hire by increasing the number of child and youth workers employed.
  • Improved contract management and performance monitoring and increased the number of young people in family based placements.
  • Reduced child care expenditure by maximising foster carer registration for federal government child care subsidies.
Better Services
  • Introduced the Manual of Practice, an integrated contemporary service approach, which ensures the safety and best outcomes for children and young people.
  • Further embedded the Aboriginal Cultural Identity Support Tool (ACIST) to ensure cultural identity is forefront in case planning.
  • Launched the online carer portal and the Carer Statement of Commitment to better support family-based carers of children and young people in care.
  • Implemented the In Care Therapeutic Program, to focus on addressing the specific needs of children and young people with a disability and developmental delay.
  • Commenced Family Group Conferencing, with an emphasis on cultural safety and responsiveness for Aboriginal families.
  • Developed Placement and Support Packages (PaSP), which provide short-term residential care placements for children and young people.
  • Reshaped our Supported Independent Living Services to deliver an improved approach to young people’s transition from care.
  • Commenced implementation of the Sanctuary Model of therapeutic care across all of DCP’s residential homes.
  • Developed a new program and engaged three Aboriginal organisations to deliver specialised support to the kinship carers of Aboriginal children.
  • Continued to support children and young people to access the National Disability and Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
  • Convened the first Disability Community of Practice to promote best practice and build common capability in the delivery of support to children and young people in care with disability in a trauma-informed context.
  • Led work on the development of a nationally consistent approach to the provision of respite for children with disability in care that reflects the roles and responsibilities of states and territories and the NDIS.
  • DCP has continued to deliver on our commitment to increase the system’s capacity for family based care, including through the recruitment of 82 primary foster carers.
  • Coordinated across government reporting on the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, with an additional 16 recommendations completed across government since the previous report published in December 2020.

Agency specific objectives and performance

Agency objectivesIndicatorsPerformance

Achieving practice excellence


Staff are supported to develop and use best practice in their work with children, young people, families and carers.

Increase staff participation in learning and development. DCP proactively identified and allocated appropriate employees to participate in whole-of-government leadership development programs.

Increase case plans for children and young people in care.

Of the children and young people in care, 87.3% had an approved case plan (Target 85%).
Increase response to screened-in calls. There was an increase of 5,512 notifications requiring a response in 2019-20.  55.1% were referred1, compared with 56.4% in 2018-19.

Honouring the Aboriginal Child Placement Principle


We will address the disproportionate number of children in care by involving Aboriginal families and communities in decisions about the care of their children.

Increase Aboriginal employment. DCP engaged 123 employees (5%) who identify as Aboriginal as at 30 June 2020, compared to 117 employees as at 30 June 2019.
Increase and expand procurement from Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations. As at 30 June 2020, 6.3% of all procurement was from Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations. (SA Government target 3%)
Increase number of children placed in accordance with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle. The number of Aboriginal children and young people placed in accordance with the Principle increased from 854 in 2018-19 to 977 in 2019-20.

Partnering with carers


Carers are respected and valued as partners in the care team and are supported to meet the needs of children and young people in their care.

Increase net number of foster carers. As at 30 June 2020, there were 1,380 primary foster carers, a net increase of 82, since 30 June 2019.
Increase carer participation in annual case planning As at 30 June 2020, primary carers participated in 68.4% of all Annual Reviews, an increase from 67.2% in 2018-19.

Increase the proportion of carers who have a child in their care.

As at 30 June 2020, the percentage of approved foster carers with at least one child placed in their care was maintained at 62.9%.

Supporting our staff


We recruit, develop and support our staff with systems, processes and workplaces that enable them to be effective and efficient in their work and maintain their wellbeing.

Increase work health and safety. There was a 4.7% reduction in claims, down from 128 in 2018-19 to 122 in 2019-20.
Increased digitisation of services Over 700 laptops, mobile devices and Wi-Fi connectivity were rolled out to DCP offices and frontline workers, which enabled staff to make more timely decisions and access required information while out in the field.
In addition, the COVID-19 response resulted in rapid deployment of an additional 680 laptops and mobility access to front line staff.

Increase engagement with the I WORK FOR SA Your Voice Survey

DCP conducted a “Pulse” Survey in February 2020 to seek the views of staff about our progress in the key focus areas of leadership, employee wellbeing and continuous improvement culture. 457 (20%) of employees responded.

Working together


We team up with our service partners to improve outcomes for families, children, young people and carers.

Increase stakeholder engagement. The DCP online carer platform had over 19,400 visitors, since its establishment in September 2019.
Increase participation of children in education, training and employment. The South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE) completion rate for young people in care was 39.5% for 2019, compared to 26.6% in 2018.

Increase family engagement in support services.

Commenced Family Group Conferencing, with an emphasis on cultural safety and responsiveness for Aboriginal families. As at 30 June 2020, 46 families had been referred to participate.

Reduce the rate of children coming into care.

DCP actively worked with the Department of Human Services (DHS) on the co-design and development of the Child and Family Support System. Components of the system include:
  • designing the system with Aboriginal families and communities
  • embedding trauma responsive practice
  • establishing mechanisms for early help and support
  • regional access
  • strengthening workforce
  • monitoring and evaluation
  • commissioning bases on data, evidence and outcomes.

Delivering a care system based on need


The individual needs of children and young people are well understood and inform the services and support we provide.

Reduce the average length of stay per child in emergency (commercial) care placements. DCP developed the Placement and Support Package (PASP) model to provide short-term, individualised and targeted support specific to the needs to children and young people. The PASP model is an important milestone in work underway to cease commercial care placements.
Increase the number of children in family based care. As at 30 June 2020, 86.3% of children and young people in care resided in family based placements, compared to 85.8% in June 2019.

Reduce number of children who experience more than 2 placements.

As at 30 June 2020, 68.8% of children who have been in care for 12 months or more have experienced more than two placements (65.3% as at 30 June 2019).

Delivering quality and safety


We are accountable and transparent in the services we provide and invest to strengthen quality and safety.

Reduce the time taken to finalise investigations of serious care concerns. There has been a 76% reduction in open serious care concern cases, compared to June 2019.
Increase the percentage of complaints resolved within policy timeframes. In 2019-20, 82.7% of all complaints received were resolved within policy timeframes (30 days).

Improve outcomes in quarterly performance reviews.

As above.

Corporate performance summary

During 2019-20, DCP continued to contribute towards a number of key corporate initiatives, including:

  • Worked towards meeting the goals set out in the Aboriginal Employment Strategy 2019-20 by implementing a range of initiatives to attract Aboriginal people. Priority areas include offering meaningful and sustainable employment opportunities across all areas of DCP, retaining Aboriginal employees, and ensuring the workplace is supportive and culturally safe.
  • Delivered on its commitment to increase and expand its relationship with Aboriginal Controlled Organisations (ACCOs). In order to encourage the participation of ACCOs, procurement methodologies were introduced to reduce traditionally adversarial aspects of the competitive tender processes. The successful development of these relationship will contribute to better outcomes for Aboriginal children and young people.
  • Expanded its commitment to training, and the professional development of staff in order to maintain a highly skilled workforce. During 2019-20, areas of focus included leadership development, professional supervision, trauma informed practice and cultural capability.
  • Further embedded the cultural development training program Aboriginal Cultural Footprint, which provides staff with the knowledge, skills and understanding required to work with Aboriginal children, families and communities.
  • Continued to develop a department-wide child protection specific commissioning approach. This approach will provide DCP staff with tools and guidance to support the consistent design, development, monitoring and evaluation of services
  • Continued to deliver contract reform, establishing a dedicated online Contract Management and Licensing System and being the first government agency to enable paperless contract management.
  • Established the DCP staff recognition program with the Minister and Chief Executive presenting awards of recognition in November 2019.
  • Established the MyPlace program under which staff and individual young people in residential care create more nurturing and enriching environments within their homes. One of the project’s key objectives is to listen to young people’s voices, opinions and preferences, and to support their participation in decisions about their home.

Employment opportunity programs

Program namePerformance
Aboriginal Employment DCP released its Aboriginal Employment Strategy 2019-2022 in August 2019.  The strategy outlines a range of initiatives to support employment and retention of Aboriginal people, with the aim of achieving 10% Aboriginal employment by 2022.
At 30 June 2020, DCP engaged 123 employees (5%) who identify as Aboriginal, compared to 117 employees at 30 June 2019.
Skilling SA Signature Project DCP is actively contributing to the South Australian Government Skilling SA Signature Project, supporting the employment of trainees and upskilling of employees in the public sector. During the 2019-20 financial year the department has successfully commenced 14 Contracts of Training under this initiative.
Disability Employment DCP led the development of a Disability Access and Inclusion Plan, including strengthening initiatives to support the employment of people with a disability.  Consultation on the plan will commence in August 2020.
Gender Equality & Respect In December 2019 DCP released its first Gender Equality & Respect Action Plan, to support gender equality, and affirming our commitment to work towards re-accreditation as a White Ribbon Accredited Workplace.

Agency performance management and development systems

Performance management and development systemPerformance
Performance Development Plans As at 30 June 2020, 57.6% of current employees had completed a Performance Development Plan within the previous 6 months
DCP is committed to improving performance, with compliance rates reported to leaders and monitored on a monthly basis

Work health, safety and return to work programs

Program Name

Performance

Management of significant agency risks

DCP continued to develop and improve its Work Health Safety systems, and the effectiveness of its Injury Management systems.

Prevention Frameworks

Safe Work Method Statements (SWMS) are being developed to support safe work practices.
DCP released its Wellbeing Framework 2019-21, outlining initiatives to support staff wellbeing across the department
DCP is promoting wellbeing resources and programs such as the “Mentally Healthy Workplaces” and “Healthy workers, healthy futures”

DCP Mandatory Training As part of the DCP Mandatory Training all staff are required to complete Work, Health and Safety for Workers and Stopping the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace training courses.
Workplace injury claims Current year 20 19-20 Past year 2018-19 % Change (+ / -)

Total new workplace injury claims

122

128

-4.7%

Fatalities

0

0

0

Seriously injured workers*

0

4

-100%

Significant injuries (where lost time exceeds a working week, expressed as frequency rate per 1000 FTE)

25.38

20.61

+23.1%

*number of claimants assessed during the reporting period as having a whole person impairment of 30% or more under the Return to Work Act 2014 (Part 2 Division 5)

Work health and safety regulations Current year 2019-20 Past year 2018-19 % Change (+ / -)

Number of notifiable incidents (Work Health and Safety Act 2012, Part 3)

7 2 +250%

Number of provisional improvement, improvement and prohibition notices (Work Health and Safety Act 2023 Sections 9, 191 and 195)

0 0 0  
Return to work costs** Current year 2019-20 Past year 2018-19 % Change (+/-)
Total gross workers compensation expenditure ($) 5,540,932 4,934,386 +12.3%
Income support payments – gross ($) 1,784,545 1,738,550 +2.7%

**before third party recovery

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/1f5439d0-0e78-4c34-8c0f-44a820ae07b1

Executive employment in the agency

Executive classification Number of executives
EXECOF 1
SAES2 5
SAES1 7

Data reflects the number of employees under an executive contract as at 30 June 2020, this figure does not include vacancies or persons employed on executive backfill arrangements (non-executive contracts) at the time.

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/51fa28a7-5220-45e0-ab73-92472f1b2c00

The Office of the Commissioner for Public Sector Employment has a workforce information page that provides further information on the breakdown of executive gender, salary and tenure by agency.

Financial performance at a glance

The following is a brief summary of the overall financial position of the agency. The information is unaudited. Full audited financial statements for 2019-20 are attached to this report.

Statement of Comprehensive Income 2019-20 Actual  
$000s
2018-19 Actual
$000s
Variation
$000s
Total Income 574 123 558 143 15 980
Total Expenses 575 738 541 021 34 717
Net result1 615(17,122)18 737
Total Comprehensive Result3 846(16,164) 20 010
Statement of Financial Position 2019-20 Actual $000s 2018-19 Actual $000s Variation $000s
Current assets 42 953 47,296 (4 343)
Non-current assets 43 303 38,076 5 227
Total assets86 25685,372884
Current liabilities 55 196 56,756 (1 560)
Non-current liabilities 51 748 53,150 (1 402)
Total liabilities106,944109,906(2 962)
Net assets(20 688)(24,534)3 846

Consultants disclosure

The following is a summary of external consultants that have been engaged by the agency, the nature of work undertaken, and the actual payments made for the work undertaken during the financial year.

Consultancies with a contract value below $10,000 each

Consultancies

Purpose

$ Actual payment

All consultancies below $10,000 each - combined

Various

0

Consultancies with a contract value above $10,000 each

Consultancies

Purpose

$ Actual payment

KPMG

Evaluation of the Transition to Adult Life Intensive (TALI) program

$62,032

Price Waterhouse Coopers

Provision of governance advice and facilitation of strategic risk workshops

$ 18,500

 

Total

$80,532

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/0ec74e12-fdd5-46d5-9341-70f3af068262

See also the Consolidated Financial Report of the Department of Treasury and Finance for total value of consultancy contracts across the South Australian Public Sector.

Contractors disclosure

The following is a summary of external contractors that have been engaged by the agency, the nature of work undertaken, and the actual payments made for work undertaken during the financial year.

Contractors with a contract value below $10,000

ContractorsPurpose $ Actual payment

All contractors below $10,000 each - combined

Various

$19,217

Contractors with a contract value above $10,000 each

Contractors

Purpose

$ Actual payment

Chamonix IT Management

Professional services - Intranet roll out

$427,822

FSE Consulting

Professional Services - Contract reform project

$424,120

Hays Specialist Recruitment

HR – Short term staffing

$416,272

Miktysh

Professional services - ICT services

$223,613

TimeTarget Pty Ltd

Professional services – ICT services

$189,018

National Council On Crime

Professional services - Child development project

$154,298

Modis Staffing Pty Ltd

HR – Short term staffing

$139,676

PsychCheck Pty Ltd

Professional services – Psychological assessments

$120,312

Women's Safety Services SA

HR – Short term staffing

$95,192

ArcBlue Consulting (Aus) Pty Ltd

HR – Short term staffing

$87,730

Kornar Winmil Yunti Aboriginal Corporation

HR – Short term staffing

$71,394

ZED Management Consulting

Professional services – Review of corporate governance framework and clinical lead roles

$67,905

Hoban Recruitment Pty Ltd

HR – Short term staffing

$63,191

Power Solutions Dtd Pty Ltd

Professional services - ICT services

$60,460

Social Services Associates LLC

Professional services - Workshop delivery

$51,252

RNTT Pty Ltd

Professional services – Cooking services

$49,595

Henderson Horrocks Risk Services

Professional services – Investigation services

$41,186

Galpins Accountants, Auditors and Business Consultants

Professional services – Audit services

$35,776

BDO Advisory (SA) Pty Ltd

Professional services - Probity advisory services

$31,780

Insync Solutions Pty Ltd

Professional services - ICT services

$22,000

PsychMed

Professional services – Psychometric assessments

$20,300

Paul Nixon Associates Ltd

Professional services - Supporting family group conference practice improvements

$20,163

KPP Ventures Pty Ltd

HR - short term staffing

$19,264

Jensen PLUS

Professional services- Development application services

$17,532

Deloitte Risk Advisory Pty Ltd

Professional services – Audit services

$16,649

Totalspace Design

Professional services – Residential development

$15,900

DFP Recruitment Services

HR - Short term staffing

$15,512

Code For Aus Pty Ltd

Professional services – ICT services

$12,500

Andrew Hill Investigations

HR - Contracted and professional services

$12,176

oztrain Pty Ltd

Professional services - Workshop delivery

$10,000

 

Total

$2,932,588

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/e87cca76-bbf0-47c6-a4ab-4bdd6549bddb

The details of South Australian Government-awarded contracts for goods, services, and works are displayed on the SA Tenders and Contracts website. View the agency list of contracts.

The website also provides details of across government contracts.

Risk and audit at a glance

The DCP Internal Audit and Risk function has reviewed DCP’s Strategic and Operational Risk registers to ensure alignment with DCP’s Strategic Plan and support decision-making and governance activities. Work to embed risk management principles and best practice across all business areas is continuing.

Additionally, internal audit reviews have been undertaken in line with DCP’s three-year internal audit plan. This included reviews of Cyber Security, Data Governance and Human Resource Recruitment practices. A revised three-year Internal Audit Plan for 2020 to 2023 has been developed which will provide continued coverage of the key strategic and operational risks

Fraud detected in the agency

Category/nature of fraud

Number of instances

Falsification of Signature

1

NB: Fraud reported includes actual and reasonably suspected incidents of fraud.

Strategies implemented to control and prevent fraud

DCP has embedded the Fraud and Corruption Control Procedure, which formalises processes and strategies for preventing, detecting and responding to actual, alleged or suspected fraud. The Procedure contributes to a departmental culture that is aware of the risks of fraud, and ensures all employees are aware of their obligations to report conduct reasonably suspected of being fraud, corruption or other criminality, misconduct or maladministration.

Other measures to assist in the identification and control of fraud include internal and external audit programs, internal reporting and governance frameworks, annual financial controls self-assessments, and disclosures made under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2018 and the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Act 2012.

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/d9725de4-0eba-4241-b51e-d0406dd52b8a

Public interest disclosure

Number of occasions on which public interest information has been disclosed to a responsible officer of the agency under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2018:

Nil

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/f6b5f1d9-c2bc-44f6-9a26-fb76fb1f6a64

Note:  Disclosure of public interest information was previously reported under the Whistleblowers Protection Act 1993 and repealed by the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2018 on 1/7/2019.

Reporting by the Department for Child Protection

Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017

Part 4 – Additional Reporting Obligations of the Chief Executive

Section 156(1) The Chief Executive must, not later than 30 September in each year, submit to the Minister a report setting out:

(a) the following information in respect of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people:

  1. the extent to which case planning in relation to such children and young people includes the development of cultural maintenance plans with input from local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and organisations:
  2. the extent to which agreements made in case planning relating to supporting the cultural needs of such children and young people are being met (being support such as transport to cultural events, respect for religious laws, attendance at funerals, providing appropriate food and access to religious celebrations);
  3. the extent to which such children and young people have access to a case worker, community, relative or other person from the same Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander community as the child or young person;

DCP is unable to report fully on section 156(1)(a)(ii) and (iii) as reporting capacity is yet to be developed, as at 30 June 2020,

  • The rate of case plan completion for Aboriginal children and young people was 87.2%.
  • Currently, 56.6% of Aboriginal children and young people have a completed and approved Aboriginal Cultural Identity Support Tool (ACIST). DCP is incorporating the ACIST into the case plan, which will support an integrated approach to cultural maintenance plans.

Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017

Part 4 – Additional Reporting Obligations of the Chief Executive

Section 156(1) The Chief Executive must, not later than 30 September in each year, submit to the Minister a report setting out:

(b) the following information relating to case workers and children and young people in care:

  1. whether a case worker has been allocated to each child and young person in care;
  2. whether each child and young person in care has had face to face contact with their allocated case worker at least once in each month, and, if not, the extent to which those targets have been achieved; and

(c) whether each child or young person under the guardianship of the Chief Executive until they are 18 years of age has a case plan that is developed, monitored and reviewed as part of a regular 6 monthly planning cycle and, if not, the extent to which that target has been achieved; and

(d) the emergence of any recurring themes in the matters referred to in a preceding paragraph; and

(e) the following information relating to recommendations of the Child Protection Systems Royal Commission (being information relating to the preceding financial year):

  1. the extent to which any outstanding recommendations have been implemented;
  2. if a decision was made to implement a particular recommendation that the government, or the Minister or Chief Executive, had previously indicated would not be implemented—the reasons for that decision and the manner in which the recommendation is to be implemented;
  3. if a decision was made not to implement a particular recommendation that the government, or the Minister or Chief Executive, had previously indicated would be implemented—the reasons for that decision; and

(f) the number, and general nature, of placements of children and young people under section 77; and

(g) any other matter prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this paragraph

  • All children and young people for which DCP had case management responsibility, had a Primary Assigned Case Worker recorded at 30 June 2020.
  • Improvements to the DCP Connected Client and Case Management System (C3MS) were deployed to enable DCP to effectively report on case plans. DCP is progressing the implementation of a new enterprise Data Analytic Tool and the internal reporting capabilities which support this.
  • The rate of case plan completion for children and young people in care was 87.3% as at 30 June 2020.
  • In the period from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2020, 46 recommendations of the Child Protection Systems Royal Commission were completed. As at 30 June 2020, 210 recommendations were completed in total and 46 recommendations were yet to be completed (noting 4 recommendations were not accepted).
  • DCP has reported on section 156(1)(e) in the form of the Safe and well: 2020 Annual Report, which is a comprehensive multi-agency response to the implementation of the Child Protection Systems Royal Commission recommendations available on the DCP website via the following link: https://www.childprotection.sa.gov.au/child-protection-initiatives/system-reform/safe-and-well
  • During 2019-20:
    • 807 children and young people were placed with a temporary carer.
    • 1,568 temporary placements were made.
  • As at 30 June 2020, of the 807 children and young people who were in temporary placements in 2019-20:
    • 8 children and young people remain in a temporary placement.
    • 456 children and young people are no longer in care.
    • 343 children and young people have been placed in an alternative placement type (for example, with an approved carer or in a residential care facility).

    Reporting by the Minister for Child Protection

    Act or Regulation

    Requirement

    Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017

    Section 15 – Additional annual reporting obligations

    (detailed below)

    Section 15(1)(a) detailing the role of the Minister, and the extent to which the Minister has performed the Minister's functions, in respect of the operation of this Act for the financial year ending on the preceding 30 June; and

    This annual report details the role of the Minister and the extent to which the Minister has performed the Minister’s functions for the 2019-20 financial year. In addition, the Minister has:

    • Led the development of Safe and well: Supporting families, protecting children,providing a whole of government framework to progress child protection reform. The strategy outlines the action the Government is taking to support families at risk of entering the child protection system, protect children from harm when they come into care, and invest in young people to leave care with opportunities for a bright future.
    • Worked with Ministerial counterparts to support a national approach to child protection responses to COVID-19. The unprecedented generosity and support across Ministerial and senior executive leaders was pivotal to ensure DCP, as an essential service, was prepared in the event of local outbreaks.
    • Led work to ensure that all children and young people in care can actively participate and achieve in their education, and access quality learning from birth, through all ages and stages of preschool, primary school and high school.
    • Supported and promoted research and partnerships with research organisations to address matters impacting young people who are at risk of entering the child protection system. This included introducing a new Research Management Framework, comprising 15 new research projects and the completion of seven projects.
    • Supported collaborative work with DHS on the co-design and development of the Child and Family Support System.
    • Launched Investing in their future, an initiative that helps children and young people in care access a range of services to support them to thrive and reach their full potential. The initiative provides children in care with priority access to services to achieve better outcomes in their health, education and wellbeing.
    • Achieved significant contract reform, resulting in a reduction in costs whilst improving the quality of care for children and young people.
    • Led a foster care campaign to encourage South Australians to consider whether they could provide a safe, stable and loving home for our most vulnerable children and young people.
    • Committed to the continual recruitment and retention of frontline child protection workers whilst exploring new and innovative approaches to attracting quality candidates.
    • Launched a partnership with Catholic Education South Australia, who are providing up to 100 scholarships to primary and secondary-aged children and young people in care across all South Australian Catholic schools.
    • Led consultation and policy development on the practice of open adoption from care as one of a range of permanency options available for children and young people, with the exception of Aboriginal children and young people in care. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle applies to permanency planning for Aboriginal children and young people.
    • Undertook targeted consultation process with key stakeholders on the operations of the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 to mark the first year anniversary of the full commencement of the legislation.
    • Recruited an additional 82 carers, exceeding the government’s target of 50 by 32.

    (b) setting out the following information relating to the provision of family support services and intensive family support services to children and young people who are at risk and their families:

    (i) the extent to which such services were provided by, or on behalf of, the State (including statistical data relating to the number of times such services were provided) during the financial year ending on the preceding 30 June;

    (ii) the amount of resources allocated for the provision of such services by or on behalf of the State—

    (A) during the financial year ending on the preceding 30 June; and

    (B) during the current financial year;

    (iii) the extent to which the allocated resources were, in fact, spent on the provision of such services during the financial year ending on the preceding 30 June.

    The following information summarises the delivery of programs/services that relate to the provision of family support services and intensive services to children and young people who are at risk and their families.

    PROGRAM / SERVICE

    DESCRIPTION AND SUMMARY OF OUTCOMES IN 2019-20

    FINANCIAL INFORMATION

    2020-21
    Budget
    $m

    2019-20
    Actual
    Expenditure
    $m

    2019-20
    Budget
    $m

    Child and Family Assessment and Referral Networks (CFARN)

    CFARN teams work with children and families to provide a coordinated, targeted and culturally appropriate earlier intervention approach to improve the safety, health, development and education outcomes where risk factors exist. CFARN is led by DHS in Northern Adelaide, Southern Adelaide and the Limestone Coast, and in Western Adelaide by Relationships Australia SA (non-government partner).

    There were 428 clients with 847 associated children serviced during
    2019-20.

    $2.935

    $2.036

    $2.694

    Child Wellbeing Practitioners

    Child Wellbeing Practitioners deliver services to children and families to improve the safety and wellbeing of children who are identified as vulnerable and/or at risk of child protection within the state’s public-school system.

    There were 974 families with 2,225 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $7.939

    $6.076

    $7.783

    Community Services Support Program (CSSP) - Family Support and Early Intervention

    CSSP Family Support and Early Intervention services aim to improve child development outcomes in vulnerable families, and to prevent crises or problems escalating within vulnerable families that can lead to family conflict and family breakdown.

    1,794 individuals were provided with family support and early intervention through CSSP during 2019-20.

    $4.32

    $4.22

    $4.21

    Community Support Program (CSP)

    The CSP stream is a transitional funding stream for organisations that do not yet meet the requirements of the CSSP. Two organisations were funded through the CSP stream in 2019-20, with both having a focus on supporting families of at-risk children or young people.

    One program has a focus on provision of information and advocacy (1,217 individuals supported in 2019-20) while the other provides family support and early intervention (90 individuals received services in 2019-20).

    $0.29

    $0.29

    $0.282

    Family by Family2

    Family by Family is delivered by a non-government organisation to children and families who are assessed as vulnerable to child abuse and neglect and who are at risk of being involved in the statutory child protection system. There were 219 families with 402 associated children serviced during
    2019-20.

    $1.707

    $1.786

    $1.633

    Family Practitioners3

    Family Practitioners deliver a statewide service to children and families where child protection risks have been identified, to support children’s overall safety and wellbeing within the state’s Children’s Centres.

    There were 805 families with 1,518 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $4.813

    $3.318

    $4.718

    Family Preservation Services

    Family Preservation Services are delivered by non-government organisations to families to preserve and strengthen family relationships, ensuring children and young people can remain safely in the care of their families. There were 219 families with 526 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $3.996

    $3.814

    $3.824

    Northern Adelaide Intensive Support Pilot

    The Northern Adelaide Intensive Support Pilot is delivered by a non-government organisation to provide services to families whose children have been assessed by DCP as being at imminent risk of having their child or children placed in care. There were 33 families with 101 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $1.400

    $1.400

    $1.400

    Strong Start

    Strong Start is a government led service in Northern and Southern Adelaide to support first time mothers experiencing multiple complexities in their lives, to create a safe and nurturing environment for their baby. There were 159 families with 153 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $1.365

    $1.180

    $1.338

    Targeted Intervention Service 5

    Targeted Intervention Services are delivered by non-government organisations to families to improve family functioning, help to prevent family breakdown, decrease the occurrence of child abuse and neglect and to reduce the likelihood of children entering in care. There were 458 families with 1,163 associated children serviced during 2019-20.

    $6.465

    $6.18

    $6.18

    Tiraapendi Wodli (Justice Reinvestment Port Adelaide)

    As one part of the new Child and Family Support System, this program builds community capacity to reduce Aboriginal family violence and over-representation in youth justice and the child protection system.

    The Tiraapendi Wodli Priority Action Plan 2019-2021 identifies actions to strengthen local community capacity and deliver improvements across a range of indicators in education, employment, health, justice, and family safety. It also aims to improve the accessibility of government services and strengthen collaboration between government and Aboriginal people.

    99 individuals were provided with services during 2019-20.

    $0.41

    $0.40

    $0.40

    Western Adelaide Intensive Support Pilot

    Commencing on 17 April 2020, the Western Adelaide Intensive Support Pilot is delivered by a non-government organisation to provide services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families whose children have been assessed by DCP as being at imminent risk of having their child or children placed in care.

    There were two families consisting of 13 individuals serviced during 2019-20.

    $0.75

    $0.25

    $0.25

    2 Family by Family was transferred from the Department for Education (DE) to the Department of Human Services (DHS) as part of Machinery of Government (MOG) changes on 1 July 2019.

    3Family Practitionerswas transferred from DE to DHS as part of MOG changes on 1 July 2019. The budget for 2018-19 was a combined budget and is unable to be provided separately.

    4Family Preservation Services was transferred from DCP to DHS as part of MOG changes on 1 July 2019.

    5Targeted Intervention Service was transferred from DE to DHS as part of MOG changes on 1 July 2019.

    2019-20 Budget figures vary from what was published in the 2018-19 DCP Annual Report due to MOG changes and CPI increases.

    Section 15(1)(b)(iv) bench-marking the resources referred to in subparagraph (ii) and (iii) against those allocated and spent by other States and Territories in the provision of such services during the financial year ending on the preceding 30 June; and

    The Report on Government Services (ROGS) details this information. It is published in January each year and is available from https://www.pc.gov.au/research/ongoing/report-on-government-services.

    (c) providing any other information required by the regulations for the purposes of this paragraph.

    Indicators of Performance

    Performance

    2019-20

    Performance Comparison to 2018-19

    Responding to notifications

    Total calls made to the Call Centre

    65,334

    In 2019-20 the number of calls to the Call Centre decreased by 7.1% from 2018-19 (70,297).

    In 2019-20, 77.7% of calls to the Call Centre were answered, a 3.8 percentage point decrease on the 81.5% (57,270) answered in 2018-19.

    Number of calls answered

    50,751

    Average wait time to the Child Abuse Report Line

    15 min 22 sec

    The average wait time to the Child Abuse Report Line in 2019-20 was 4 minutes 7 seconds more than 2018-19 (11 min 15 sec)

    Number of eCARL submissions

    37,496

    There were 2,518 (7.2%) more eCARL submissions in
    2019-20 than in 2018-19 (34,9786)

    Total number of notifications referred for an alternative response

    14,879

    Of the 14,879 notifications referred:

    • 7,980 were referred to an   appropriate State Authority
    • 6,899 were referred for   another outcome, including family meeting, case management responses or phone   contact.

    Child protection responses

    Number of notifications

    75,552 (17,364 notifications for Aboriginal children and young people)

    In 2019-20 there were 2,647 (3.4%) fewer notifications received than in 2018-19 (78,199).

    There were 10,718 (37.2%) more notifications screened-in for further assessment and response in 2019-20, than in 2018-19 (28,790).

    Of the 2019-20 notifications, 52.3% were screened-in compared to 36.8%
    screened-in for 2018-19.

    Notifications for Aboriginal children comprised 23% of all notifications in 2019-20 compared to 22.9% (17,892) in 2018-19 and 27.7% of screened-in notifications compared to 27.8% (8,003) in 2018-19.

    Number of screened-in notifications

    39,508 (10,934 screened in notifications for Aboriginal children and young people)

    Children placed on child protection orders

    Total children placed on orders

    2,583 (866 Aboriginal children and young people)

    The number of children admitted to an order increased by 752 (41.1%) compared to 2018-19 (1,831).

    Aboriginal children comprised 33.5% of children placed on child protection orders in 2019‑20 compared to 33.4% (612) in 2018-19.

    Children placed on orders for first time

    911 (307 Aboriginal children and young people)

    The number of children admitted to an order for the first time increased by 153 (20.2%) from 2018-19 (758).

    In 2019-20, 35.6% of children were admitted to an order for the first time, compared to 41.4% in 2018-19.

    Aboriginal children comprised 33.7% of children placed on orders for the first time in
    2019-20 compared to 34.3% (260) in 2018-19.

    Total children on a 12-month order at 30 June 2020

    610 (232 Aboriginal children and young people)

    At 30 June 2020, 87 (17%) more children were on a Guardianship for 12-month order, than at 30 June 2019 (513).

    Aboriginal children comprised 38% of children on a 12 month order at 30 June 2020 compared to 36.5% (187) in 2019.

    Total children on an order until 18 years of age under Guardianship of the Minister

    3,653 (1,317 Aboriginal children and young people)

    The number of children on a Guardianship to 18 years order at 30 June 2020 increased by 247 (7.3%) from 30 June 2019 (3,406).

    Aboriginal children comprised 36.1% of children on an order to 18 years at 30 June 2020 compared to 34.8% (1,184) in 2019.

    Children in care

    Number of children (0-17 years) in out of home care at 30 June 2020

    4,370 (1,544 Aboriginal children and young people)

    The number of children aged 0-17 years in out of home care at 30 June 2020 increased by 382 (9.6%) compared to 30 June 2019 (3,988).

    A higher proportion of children are in family-based care in 2020 (86.3%) compared to 2019 (85.8%). Family-based care includes foster, kinship, specific child only and family day care.

    The number of children placed in a commercial property at 30 June 2020 increased by 20

    Child Protection Reform – Implementing A Fresh Start

    Refer to Child Protection Systems Royal Commission reporting on our website

    6Denotes an updated methodology of counting from 2018-19.

Number of public complaints reported

Complaint categories

Sub-categories

Example

Number of Complaints

2019-20

Professional behaviour

Staff attitude

Failure to demonstrate values such as empathy, respect, fairness, courtesy, extra mile; cultural competency

82

Professional behaviour

Staff competency

Failure to action service request; poorly informed decisions; incorrect or incomplete service provided

20

Professional behaviour

Staff knowledge

Lack of service specific knowledge; incomplete or out-of-date knowledge

13

Communication

Communication quality

Inadequate, delayed or absent communication with customer

107

Communication

Confidentiality

Customer’s confidentiality or privacy not respected; information shared incorrectly

5

Service delivery

Systems/technology

System offline; inaccessible to customer; incorrect result/information provided; poor system design

5

Service delivery

Access to services

Service difficult to find; location poor; facilities/ environment poor standard; not accessible to customers with disabilities

0

Service delivery

Process

Processing error; incorrect process used; delay in processing application; process not customer responsive

396

Policy

Policy application

Incorrect policy interpretation; incorrect policy applied; conflicting policy advice given

31

Policy

Policy content

Policy content difficult to understand; policy unreasonable or disadvantages customer

4

Service quality

Information

Incorrect, incomplete, out dated or inadequate information; not fit for purpose

10

Service quality

Access to information

Information difficult to understand, hard to find or difficult to use; not plain English

6

Service quality

Timeliness

Lack of staff punctuality; excessive waiting times (outside of service standard); timelines not met

1

Service quality

Safety

Maintenance; personal or family safety; duty of care not shown; poor security service/ premises; poor cleanliness

26

Service quality

Service responsiveness

Service design doesn’t meet customer needs; poor service fit with customer expectations

27

No case to answer

No case to answer

Third party; customer misunderstanding; redirected to another agency; insufficient information to investigate

0*

  

Total

733

* Denotes a change in counting rules from 2018-19, with categorisation now in line with Ombudsman SA categories established by the Better Services Program and agreed across government by the Senior Management Council.

As DCP became a stand-alone department in November 2016, data is only available from this time. Data for previous years is available at: https://data.sa.gov.au/data/dataset/8a49679b-3f96-4a99-9e52-58e4a3ccc968

Additional Metrics

Total

Number of positive feedback comments

38 (general enquires) 12 (feedback)

Number of negative feedback comments

683 (logged complaints)

Total number of feedback comments

733

% complaints resolved within policy timeframes

82.7% cases resolved consistent with policy (<30 days or acceptable ongoing engagement)

99.4% cases January 2020 to June 2020 – cases resolved consistent with policy (less than 30 days or acceptable ongoing engagement)

Service Improvements resulting from complaints or consumer suggestions over 2019-20
  • In the 2019-20 period DCP’s Complaints   Policy has been reviewed and updated.    It has been published within DCP and on the internet.
  • The updated policy is in accordance with   the principles in the Australian/ New   Zealand Standard: Guidelines for Complaint Management in Organizations   (AS/NZS 10002:2014).
  • DCP’s current practice guidance is in   accordance with the principles in the Australian/   New Zealand Standard: Guidelines for Complaint Management in Organizations   (AS/NZS 10002:2014) but is being updated as part of a normal review   process, and will be released by the end of the 2020 calendar year.
  • DCP’s commitment to Aboriginal   people’s access to and understanding of the complaints process is evidenced   by the policy and procedures including a statement setting out a culturally   safe and responsive practice.
  • Basic performance reporting is captured by   the unit to ensure key performance targets are monitored.
  • In the 2020-21 period DCP will embed and   implement a departmental incident and complaints management system that will   allow for more comprehensive capturing of incidents and complaints at a local   level. The system will provide greater reporting capability and workflow functions.