Thursday, April 07, 2016

Confusion in CYF report

This is from the Rebstock report into CYF released today:

 "In 2014, CYF received 152,000 family violence notifications from Police involving 97,000 children. The majority of these were not acted upon as the nature of the concerns did not reach CYFs threshold for response and there was a lack of alternative services to address the needs of these families in the community."

My initial reaction to this was utter surprise. A majority not acted on? That seems shocking.

But that's because it's not right.

Consider the CYF statistics:

In 2014 there were 57,889 family violence referrals from Police and 88,768 care and protection reports of concern.

According to CYF:

Notifications comprise “reports of concern” (which may require action by Child, Youth and Family) and “Police family violence referrals” (which do not require action by Child, Youth and Family). We receive reports of concern from Education, Health, Police, Courts, social service providers, family members, and members of the public. 

Police family violence referrals are not assessed by Child, Youth and Family. Police family violence referrals are the result of Police attending a family violence incident where children are present or normally resident at the household concerned and where Police assess that Child, Youth and Family action is not required.
So it would appear the report stats are wrong and misleading. The report goes on to state however:

 These notifications represent a significant opportunity for early intervention to provide the support families need before concerns escalate into situations of harm to children.
Which and how many? Can sound recommendations be made based on unsound data?

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