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Our story

The Department for Child Protection (DCP) was formed in November 2016 in response to recommendations from the Child Protection Systems Royal Commission, led by the Honourable Margaret Nyland AM. 

We work in partnership with vulnerable families, other government and non-government organisations, foster carers and the community to keep children and young people safe and give them the same opportunities as other young South Australians. 

Where children cannot safely stay in the family home we will find a place for them to live, preferably with kin or foster care families. 

We aim to give young South Australians in our long-term care every opportunity to reach their full potential. 

Our responsibilities

The department has responsibility for the Children's Protection Act 1993 and the Family and Community Services Act 1972

We use an evidence-informed, strengths-focused, family-centred and competency-based approach, to ensure that contact with the child protection system adds value to children and their families. 

We are responsible for: 

  • managing cases of children that are at risk of harm, are unsafe, neglected or abused
  • supporting families to keep their children safe
  • managing and supporting children and young people under the guardianship of the minister
  • facilitating out-of-home care for children and young people at risk
  • supporting the reuniting of children with their families where it is safe to do so
  • managing the adoption process
  • supporting refugee children and young people. 

See our current vision and priorities (PDF 884KB)

Annual report

The department produces an annual report for the South Australian parliament about our activities and outcomes for the calendar year.

Some data is not available for the last 5 years as DCP became a standalone department for the first time in 2016-17.


Department for Child Protection

Education Centre
31 Flinders Street
Adelaide, SA 5000

Telephone: 8124 4185