|Australian child protection departments are forcibly
removing more children per head of population then any other western
The statistics are on the banner.
This is a title of great shame causing immense harm and trauma to
vulnerable children and families that will impact for the rest of their
lives and future generations.
Even more shameful is the fact that nearly one third of children in
care are indigenous yet they account for less then 5% of children under
No one should have the power to take children from their family by
force when they have not committed any crime and without evidence. GMAR
demand an end to forced removals and a moratorium on the use of police
armed with guns, tazers, batons and pepper spray to forcibly remove
Forced removals are still happening as a first resort with no
investigation taking place, no warnings to parents and no help or
support offered. Forcibly removing children is the most drastic, costly
and intrusive act a government can carry out.
If you have any doubts at all that children are being stolen in this
country on a daily basis go to the current Senate Inquiry into children
in OOHC website and read Submission No 27 written by a solicitor – one
of the very few who actually has tried to defend parents for the past 6
years (George Potconyak) it describes exactly how children are stolen
in the Secret Care Courts due to the “perverted interpretation and
application of the Care and Protection Legislation” – were no evidence
Legal Aid Solicitors are under funded for Care and Protection matters
resulting in inadequate or at times no legal defense for parents by
their appointed solicitors.
A recent trend is emerging where parents qualify for Legal Aid but then
have their grant refused on the grounds that the case has “No Merit”.
So traumatised parents are placed in the impossible situation of trying
to defend themselves against crown lawyers with unlimited government
funds because an office clerk has pre judged their case – this is
Appeals are not funded by legal aid nor are most applications for
restoration so the children of the poor and marginalised are stolen for
the term of their childhood with no review.
Sadly our governments have failed to learn the painful and destructive
lessons of the past and have rapidly escalated the rate of child
stealing in the last decade on the ludicrous probability that it is
better to take a child because they might suffer a risk of harm at some
time in the future if left with family, while at the same time failing
to acknowledge the far greater evidenced harm to children forcibly
removed and placed in care especially with strangers.
Saying sorry for past abuse and failures is meaningless while children
are still being stolen, deaths and abuse of children in care are still
happening at an alarming rate and still being covered up in Australia’s
multi billion dollar child protection industry that caters to the whims
of the profiteering stake holders not our children and certainly not
There is no transparency or accountability with Child Protection
departments that refuse to publish data and this sets the example for
NGO’s and continues the cover ups that have always been a part of the
secret child protection industry as evidenced daily in the current
Royal Commission. They must be forced by law to publish the data of
children who are abused and die in their care including the alarming
suicide rate of children and their parents torn apart and destroyed by
the current alienating tactics used by child protection industry.
RTI is continually denied in Care and Protection matters on the grounds
that it is not in the best interests of the public to know what is
going on. We believe it is in the best interest of the public to know
about the breaches of law, the human right’s violations, and abuse of
children and families by our governments.
Child abuse does not discriminate it is found in every class of society
-Domestic Violence, Substance abuse, Mental Health Issues, disability,
emotional, physical, sexual abuse and even neglect span all classes of
Australian society but only the marginalised, disadvantaged and poorer
class including the homeless have their children forcibly removed which
is blatant social eugenics and genocide for the indigenous and why GMAR
are demanding Aboriginal control of Aboriginal child welfare.
Debra Lee Furness has announced several times last month that 11,000
babies were removed from their mother’s last year in Australia - these
alarming figures show that supply is underway for the well off
childless couples that want other peoples children and so is another
We need laws that ensure NO newborn babies can be forcibly removed
without a Court Hearing attended by both parties and evidence of abuse
or neglect. The decision to remove a child and especially a newborn
baby must be made by a Magistrate after a Hearing of evidence not by a
caseworker as happens now.
We now have babies being taken from the maternity wards and placed
under 18 year final orders in less then 50 days with do defense
afforded to the parents.
The forced adoption agenda is being spread around the nation by the
rich, powerful and influential childless couples wanting other people’s
children. Forced Adoption is now legal in NSW and a first priority for
children in care. Indigenous children were supposed to be precluded
from forced adoptions but as usual the departments are proving their
contempt by serving parents with forced adoption applications for their
NSW is providing financial incentives for NGO’s to forcibly adopt
children in care they now receive receive in excess of $21,000 up front
for every forced adoption assessment they start and more then double
that on completion of the disposal of each child out of care to a
forced adoption. This is outrageous. Why is this money not being used
for family restorations?
We already have Long Term Guardianship orders which provide all the
security a child needs in a loving home if they can’t be restored to
their families. Adoption only serves those that want other people’s
There is no legal definition for the “Best Interests of the child ” in
State and territory jurisdictions a term first used by Adolf Hitler for
his own master eugenics plan. A term now used and abused to mean what
ever the dominant and powerful want it to mean.
Until the forced removal of children by the state and territory
governments is a fair and just process based on evidence no child
should be forcibly removed and no stolen child in care should be
forcibly adopted when they have families who love them fighting for
Australia has had more then 80 Inquiries into children in state and
territory care in the last 160 years. All have evidenced the system is
a failure. But most of the recommendations were never implemented to
fix the failures.
The bringing them home report is a good example – if the
recommendations of that report released in 1997 had been made law we
would not be here today.
Most of the submissions to the current inquiry into OOHC advocate as we
do for family preservation, because it is evidenced best practice but
unless it is mandated in Law it will never happen because the
respective departments do not work with families, they work against
them and unless they are made to work with families by law and trained
in how to work with families it just won’t happen. I sit in meetings
with child protection workers as a support person for families and I
have yet to observe a worker that knows how to even talk to families
let alone work with them.
For all of us that have had the lived experience of the failed child
protection industry we know that LACK OF ACCOUNTABILITY in a major
factor for its failure.
While our governmets talk of supporting families to stay together and
only taking children as a last resort, in practice those principles are
being ignored because there are no laws that compel the child
protection departments to support families only laws that support
governments to forcibly remove children without any evidence just a
concern or opinion as no evidence in required in the secret care
The financial facts evidence this very clearly. Only around 10% of
funding nationally is spent on family support, 30% is spent on
solicitors and legal costs and the remaining 60% is spent on the costs
of Out of Home Care.
It is time to scrap the failed child protection systems and secret Care
Courts run by the state and territory governments and for the
Australian Federal Government to takeover jurisdiction of our
We need new Federal legislation that incorporates evidenced best
practice for family preservation, laws that are fair and just for every
child no matter where they live in Australian, where evidence of a
crime of abuse or neglect is required before a child is forcibly
removed and human rights are protected with independent accountability
to ensure integrity and higher standards to actually protect children.
Less then 5% of parents who have children in OOHC have been convicted
of abuse or neglect of their children and they are dealt with through
the criminal jurisdictions. Stop forcibly removing children unless
there is evidence sufficient to warrant a charge of criminal abuse or
neglect. In all other cases use that 30% of funding wasted on
litigation to intensively support families to remain safely together,
as no crimes have been committed.
At the very least the secret care courts must be opened up to public
scrutiny and the rules of evidence must apply with parents given the
presumption of innocents until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt
like every other jurisdiction in Australia.
Parents must be given equal access to legal representation funded at
the same rate as child protection departments in keeping with Human
rights and the right to be treated equally in a court of law.
All current cases must be independently audited in consultation with
families for Restoration nationwide especially in cases were children
have been taken without evidence, were laws have been breached and for
a possible future risk of harm which never acknowledges the harm done
to a child from forced removal and life in care under the current
failed system. As each child is restored funds are available to help
and support families to remain safely together instead of removing
their children. As restoration and family preservation will rapidly
reduce the numbers of children in OOHC as has occurred overseas with
mandatory family preservation models, more funds will be available to
implement prevention of child abuse and neglect programs nationwide.
Within a decade massive sayings will be achieved, we will have stronger
families and better protection of children that will continue into
future generations and be in the best interest of children, their
families and all of Australia.
Child protection workers are NOT a registered Profession in Australia.
Unlike all other professions they have no Governing Body to establish
and mandate codes of practice, conduct or even base levels of education
and training. No external Board is monitoring their performance to
protect the public from the harm their opinions and misconduct are
doing to children and families everyday. No one is holding these
unregistered caseworkers accountable in an environment of secrecy, yet
they have more power then any other Professional in Australia.
As a Registered Nurse I am held accountable for all of my actions by
AHPRA, as are all other health and medical professionals. If I treated
my patients and families as they do I would be disciplined or
We urgently need mandatory National registration for all child
protection workers so an independent governing body can hold them
accountable for their misconduct and abuse of children and families.
Unregistered caseworker opinions are made without adequate
investigations, as evidence is not required in the secretive Care
Courts so Parents are denied justice because a caseworker has failed to
adequately investigate the truth of allegations or lied in their
affidavits. I am yet to read an unregistered caseworker’s Affidavit
that does not contain defamation of parents, false allegations, and out
That is how and why so many children are stolen.
There is NO external complaints mechanism in the Australian Child
Protection Industry so evidenced complaints are NOT being investigated
by anyone but themselves and the Department is NOT being held to
account for their misconduct when dealing with vulnerable families and
abuse of children in their care by anyone. Failures are being ignored
and covered up.
We urgently need a national independent complaints mechanism empowered
with both investigative and prosecutorial powers where parents and
children can go with their evidenced complaints of abuse, misconduct
and crimes being committed against them by the child protection
industry everyday to force accountability.
Cases are documented as substantiated not on evidence but on the
opinion of an unregistered caseworker so all of the data that refers to
substantiated cases is extremely flawed.
66% of the 50,000 children currently in care were forcibly removed for
emotional harm or neglect. The high numbers of emotional harm are for
children exposed to domestic violence so start protecting the victims
and remove the violent perpetrator not the child and stop the closures
of DV support services.
The high numbers of neglect cases are due mainly to poverty so help the
family out of poverty don’t steal their children. This illustrates that
there are at least 30,000 stolen children currently in care that should
have received help and support to remain safely with their families. A
national restoration program to bring our stolen stolen children home
must be a priority of government.
NGO’s and other stakeholders must not be funded by Child Protection to
reduce corruption. I have seen case after case where the departments
manipulates stakeholders to get the outcome they want and threaten to
withdraw funds if they don’t comply and this perverts the course of
There must be a legally binding contract that states what parents have
to do to get their children back and when they have completed all that
has been asked of them their children are immediately returned. I have
seen case after case where parents have done every thing asked of them
and they still don’t get their children back.
Mandatory reporting laws are actually killing children because the
cases really in need of intervention are hard to identify when there
are over 200,000 reports of children at risk and less then 30% of cases
are ever sighted let alone assessed by a child protection worker. GMAR
are calling for an end to the “mandatory reporting” system which
creates a culture of fear and distrust with the schools, health and
social services in communities due an avalanche of reports from workers
making racist assumptions about families.
Qld has recently introduced a milder form of Mandatory reporting
recommended by Commissioner Carmody whereby a family at risk can be
referred to a family support agency rather then the child protection
department if the risk of harm is not significant. Unfortunately there
is no legal or even clear definition of what “significant risk of harm”
actually means so greater clarity is required.
We need Mandatory prosecution for any person knowingly making a false
or misleading risk of harm report to child protection authorities.
Currently anyone making a report is protected from both civil and
criminal prosecution and this would not only give families some
protection against false allegations but also reduce the amount of
notifications by deterring false, malicious and vexatious reports.
We need Laws that mandate placements with extended family as that is
not happening enough and suitable extended family are being overlook
and parents must have the right to approve of the family placement to
ensure their child is not placed in an adversarial situation that will
severe the bond between the child and parent as occurs now.
The failed policy of child stealing created by governments has to stop.
Families must be supported to stay together when no crime has been
No longer can Government’s plead ignorant. The damage to children
taken from their families and placed with strangers, either fostered or
adopted, is horrendous and lifelong. The damage to their parents has
proven irreparable and is passed down to subsequent generations.
The only people benefiting in this multi billion-dollar Child
Protection industry are the profiteering stakeholders many of whom are
currently before the Royal Commission for their past and ongoing abuse
of vulnerable children.
Without accountability this abuse will continue and current
Government’s will have NO Defense when they are made to account for
their abuse of another stolen generation.
So today on the anniversary of the Rudd apology to the Stolen
Generation we are asking that meaning and action be given to the
promises made 7 years ago.
Let us unite with one voice for National mandatory family preservation and restoration laws and
BRING OUR STOLEN CHILDREN HOME