Industry Day 2018

On Monday 24 September 2018, the Department for Child Protection hosted the inaugural DCP Industry Day.

The Industry Day was focused on ensuring our current and potential service providers understand the impacts of reform and are prepared for the 2019 contracting and tendering process and how we can better work together to provide services that best meet the needs of children and young people in care.

This was an externally focused event, aimed at current and potential Out of Home Care (OOHC) service providers to the department, as well as representatives from peak bodies, NGOs and related government departments who play a significant coordination role in the OOHC sector.

CE Welcome

What is the vision for how DCP and the sector can work differently to best serve the needs of children and young people in care? 

Providing supports for families is vital as the department, service providers and other agencies work together to identify suitable pathways building upon what is already known about the power of keeping families together while maintaining the safety of our children.

The new Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 allows for a much broader approach to addressing child protection concerns in the community, while acknowledging children and young people as the experts in their own lives.

It is important that DCP and the sector have a unified understanding of the system, strategy, roles and relationships we need to deliver the care needs of children and young people in care.

Key focus areas for our placement and contracting teams this year are:

  • Increasing family based placements (foster and kinship care)
  • Implementing the new legislation
  • Review of key service models such as disability, aboriginal practice, and independent living.

To support these key focus areas, DCP are:

  • introducing a commissioning approach to assist with managing the growing demand for services and ensure that we are delivering the best outcomes for our young people and families
  • undertaking contract reform to ensure our contracts are able to adapt, evolve and align to the identified models of care and strategies.

Presentations from the day

Key themes

Throughout the day, attendees provided questions they wanted included in the panel discussion facilitated by Dana Shen and comprising our topic presenters. To provide a holistic understanding of relevant context, these questions have been grouped into key themes below.

The relationship between NDIA and DCP, how to navigate NDIS, access funding and enable early intervention

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) began in South Australia on 1 July 2013 and has been progressively rolling out across age groups and regions.

Children and young people under 18 years with disabilities and developmental delays who meet the NDIS eligibility criteria are able to receive support through the NDIS.

A significant proportion of children in care with DCP have some level of disability or significant developmental delay and many are therefore eligible for early intervention or specialist disability supports through the NDIS.

The Disability and Development Program was created within DCP in February 2018.

The program works closely with the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) and the Commonwealth Department of Social Services to collaboratively address the needs of children with disability or developmental delay and aims to improve client outcomes as well as to promote system sustainability and works on a range of fronts including:

  • providing specialist disability consultancy and support to help staff across the agency to access a funded NDIS plan for their clients and to ensure it is fully expended on specialist disability services
  • NDIS provider market liaison to ensure the NDIS funds for clients are able to be expended on responsive, high quality disability services.

What is the scope of reform, how will it be measured and how will stakeholders be supported through change?

DCP are undertaking contract reform to ensure our contracts are able to adapt, evolve and align to the identified models of care and strategies required to best meet the needs of children and young people in care.

This will include the introduction of foundational reform elements such as:

  • Contract Management and Licencing System
  • Contract Management Framework (inclusive of policies, processes, guidelines and templates)
  • Contract Management Performance Monitoring Framework (inclusive of policies, processes and templates)
  • Standardised Contractual Agreements aligned to legislation, standards and reform objectives.

Change is incremental and contract reform will take time, our immediate measure of success is that our foundational pieces are introduced and operationalised by July 2019.

To support our internal and external stakeholders we are applying a Change Management and Engagement Assessment Framework across our activities to ensure we have the right support mechanisms in place at the right time, this will include:

  • A dedicated supplier website to access information.
  • Targeted communication and events like the DCP Industry Day to provide updates.
  • User acceptance testing and workshops to identify needs and design requirements.
  • Development of resource guides and facilitation of training and coaching to use new systems and approaches.
  • Avenues to seek feedback, endorsement, approval and evaluation.

Goods and services indexation

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community controlled organisations

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people in care

  • The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child Placement Principle (ATSICPP) placement hierarchy is reflected in Section 12 of the Children and Young People (Safety) Act 2017 and a roadmap is being developed as to how DCP will implement the full aims of the ATSICPP more broadly.
  • The Aboriginal Cultural Identity Support Tool is a mandatory practice tool that is incorporated into a child or young person’s case plan to support connection to Aboriginal identity, culture, family, community and country.

Aboriginal cultural advice and authority

  • Cultural advice can be provided by an Aboriginal individual/organisation who/that possesses skills, knowledge and/or experience who might not necessarily have cultural authority. In a child protection context, cultural advice can come from a range of sources ie DCP Aboriginal staff and internal governance groups – including Principal Aboriginal Consultants, Aboriginal leaders, and Aboriginal community controlled organisations.
  • Cultural authority can only be provided by an Aboriginal individual, group or organisation that has community-buy in, and is acting in accordance with Aboriginal customs and practices. In a child protection context, a key aspect of recognising cultural authority includes providing opportunities for Aboriginal family led decision making.
  • Culturally safe and responsive service delivery is a way of designing and delivering services that recognises and respects the strengths of Aboriginal culture, and promotes a process of self-reflection, awareness of cultural biases, and appropriate processes to actively respond to a client’s needs. The notion of culturally safe and responsive service delivery is particularly important for government agencies, and for non-Aboriginal organisations that provide services for Aboriginal people. Therefore, education and training is crucial.

Our vision - For all children and young people to grow up safe, well cared for, connected and empowered to reach their full potential.

A case for change - The number of children and young people in care continues to grow placing pressure of the care system, with some children being placed in residential care options, when they would be better suited to family based care.

The future of the care system for South Australia

  • Building a connected and accountable care system.
  • Children and young people experience connection with culture, identity and family in every aspect of their care journey.
  • Flexible approaches to sector capacity building and innovation.

How this will be achieved

  • Grow family based care options.
  • Grow kinship care options.
  • Improve recruitment and retention of family based carers.
  • Review supported independent living models to better meet the needs of young people preparing for transition to adult life.
  • Reduce the number of children in residential care to align with the national average by 2022.
  • Phase out of commercial care to occur over 2019/20.
  • Develop and implement the Placement and Support Packages (PASP) model, to allow for responsive individualised care options for complex children and young people.
  • Partnering to co-design needs based, evidence informed, therapeutic care options with an emphasis on safety, stability and permanency in children's living arrangements.

Forward procurement planning

To ensure delivery of service that best meets the needs of children and young people in care, DCP undertake an annual forward procurement planning process to review existing contracts and gaps against business and service needs and budget.

The 2019/2020 Procurement and Contracting program is expected to be published in early 2019 and any procurements via tender will be published on the SA tenders website

Any changes to existing contracts expected to conclude June 2019 will be communicated directly with affected service providers by the end of 2018.

The 2019/2020 Procurement and Contracting Program will see a variety of procurement activity and contracting arrangements adopted to ensure that DCP are best placed to:

  • Continue to grow and develop services performing well and best meeting the needs of children and young people
  • Align funding and resources to meet service and population needs
  • Allow for contract flexibility to introduce new models of care when available (i.e. Independent living, EIRD recommendations, Disability).

Procurement processes and resources

The procurement processes in DCP are undertaken in accordance with the State Procurement Board policies and guidelines.

The State Procurement Board has different processes and policy requirements for procurement based on value: