Statement from Minister Grace

Published Thursday, 05 May, 2022 at 01:56 PM

Minister for Education, Minister for Industrial Relations and Minister for Racing
The Honourable Grace Grace

My heart goes out to the child from Gracemere who is fighting for her life.

My thoughts are also with her family, friends and the entire Gracemere community.

I am confident I speak for all Queenslanders when I say we are wishing her a full and speedy recovery.

This simply should not have happened.

Families need to have peace of mind that when they send their children off to school, kindy or day care, they will come home safe.

The Queensland Police Service is investigating the incident.

My department, as the Regulatory Authority, is working closely with the QPS to ensure we gather all of the facts surrounding this tragic event.

The Regulatory Authority does not hesitate to take serious action when services fail to ensure children’s health and safety, and where other tragic incidents have occurred, the necessary action has been taken.

Following the tragic bus incident in Cairns in February 2020, I launched the Look before you Lock Campaign.

The campaign is aimed to spark behavioural change, so that anyone transporting children always check their vehicle and take other steps before, during and after any journey to ensure no child is left unattended in the vehicle.

As a result of this campaign, we have seen the numbers of children being left on buses significantly reducing. However one child is still too many. 

Amendments were also made to relevant legislation in October 2020 to strengthen obligations on services that transport children.

This included a mandatory requirement for services to have a written policy and procedure for the transportation of children and that these procedures are regularly practised.

So I remind everyone again to look before you lock. It’s a simple practice that must be followed every single time.