Worrying trend revealed in Ipswich child protection figures

MORE kids are being subject to child protection orders in a safety system struggling under a rapidly increasing workload.

Data from the Department of Child Safety, Youth and Women performance report reveals 2086 children are subject to ongoing intervention in the south-west district; 100 more than last year.

The south west includes Ipswich, Toowoomba, Springfield and the South Burnett.

The report revealed 1122 children were subject to substantiated significant harm or unacceptable risk of harm; 154 more on the previous year.

There were 639 more children compared to last year subject to notification of harm or risk of harm; taking the south-west total to 3539.

Across the state, 9950 children were subject to protective orders at June 30, 2018.

It was an increase of 2.5 per cent; from 9706 in June, 2017.

Since 2014 the number of children subject to protective orders increased by 9 per cent.

Minister for Child Safety, Youth Justice and Women Di Farmer said demand on the child safety system increased with the prevalence of ice and other drugs continuing to affect families.

"There has been a small increase in the number of child safety notifications when compared to last year, as the result of more reporting from mandatory notifiers," she said.

"The increase in notifications means more demand for investigations and we have recognised this by substantially boosting frontline child safety staff to help cope.

"We are employing an additional 458 staff over three years from 2016-17, including 93 this financial year which continues to help drive caseloads for staff down."

LNP leader Deb Frecklington said the system was failing vulnerable kids.

"Children are in harm's way while the Department of Child Safety is in chaos and struggling to deal with rapidly increasing caseloads," she said.

"It's absolutely disgraceful that the Palaszczuk Labor Government claims the child safety system is steadily improving when the data shows exactly the opposite."



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