Sunday, May 25, 2008

60,000 children touched by abuse, neglect: report

The Federal Government says about 60,000 Australian children are affected by abuse and neglect.

This morning Minister for Families Jenny Macklin released a discussion paper which says there has been an unprecedented number of reports of child neglect and abuse.

The paper looks at prevention, better collaboration between child protection services, and improved responses to cases involving Indigenous children.

Ms Macklin is calling for submissions and says she expects a "framework" to tackle the problem to be drawn up by the end of the year.

She says she is unsure whether the figures reflect a significant increase in the levels of actual abuse.

"I do think part of it's an increase in reporting," she said.

"It means that people can step in and provide the sort of care and protection that children deserve. We also need to understand, if it is increasing levels of abuse taking place, why that is."


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