First annual report of the child death case review panel

Published Thursday, 17 March, 2016 at 04:21 PM

Minister for Communities, Women and Youth, Minister for Child Safety and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence
The Honourable Shannon Fentiman

The Queensland Government today published the first annual report of Queensland’s new, independent and multidisciplinary Child Death Case Review Panel.

The panel was established in July 2014 to review deaths and serious injuries of children known to Child Safety Services.

The report was published and distributed to a briefing of nearly 30 panel members from across Queensland to network and discuss child and family reform progress.       

The report explores the deaths of 54 children and young people and the serious injury to one child, where the children and young people were known to the department within the preceding 12 months.

Natural causes - diseases or medical conditions – accounted for more than half of the deaths, with transport-related deaths the next biggest cause.

In all cases, the panels found the department’s actions or lack of action did not contribute towards the death or serious injury of any these children and young people.

Child Safety Minister Shannon Fentiman conveyed her deepest sympathies to the families and loved ones of the children who had died.

“The death or serious injury of any child is a tragedy. The government has taken these recommendations very seriously, and we’ll continue to work with the community and key stakeholders do everything we can to protect children,” Ms Fentiman said.

“The report also highlights that many of these children were exposed to domestic and family violence, which further strengthens my determination to tackle this terrible problem for our state.”

The child death case review process helps to ensure the Department is doing all it can to protect the most vulnerable children and young people in the state. 

The panels identified various areas which the Department could improve upon, including the need for better communication, coordination and collaboration between various government departments and non-government agencies.

The Department has made changes in response to a number of these areas, plus those which were highlighted through the Commission of Inquiry into Child Protection and as part of its child safety reform agenda. 

MEDIA CONTACT:  Alex Purnell – 0437 336 232