Milestone Review Panel - Community Services

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Milestone Review Panel Report:
Progress of the Government Commitments
to the Public Advocate Reports
3 Month Report
September 2012
1
Contents
Milestone Review Panel – Summary of Findings............................................................................ 3
Milestone Review Panel ............................................................................................................... 7
Members ................................................................................................................................. 7
Background .............................................................................................................................. 7
Methodology ........................................................................................................................... 8
Progress against the commitment in the Government response to the recommendations of the
Public Advocate’s Review ............................................................................................................. 9
Recommendation 1 ................................................................................................................ 11
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 1 ................................................................. 13
Recommendation 2 ................................................................................................................ 14
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 2 ................................................................. 16
Recommendation 3 ................................................................................................................ 17
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 3 ................................................................. 18
Recommendation 4 ................................................................................................................ 19
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 4 ................................................................. 20
Recommendation 5 ................................................................................................................ 21
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 5 ............................................................. 23
Recommendation 6 ................................................................................................................ 24
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 6 ............................................................. 24
Recommendation 7 ................................................................................................................ 25
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 7 ............................................................. 26
Attachment A - ACT Government Response to the Report of the Public Advocate Interim Report 27
Attachment B - Milestone Review Panel Terms of Reference ....................................................... 30
2
Milestone Review Panel – Summary of Findings
The Milestone Review Panel (Panel) consists of three members who meet on a regular basis
and are supported by the Community Services Directorate. The Panel met for the first time
on 26 September 2012.
The Public Advocate’s Report - Stage 1 Interim Report – A Review of the Emergency
Response Strategy for Children in Crisis and the Public Advocate’s Stage 2 Report Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis in the ACT focussed on the Community
Services Directorate (Directorate) emergency response. Through adopting a strategic and
systematic approach to implementing the Public Advocate’s recommendations within a
broader framework titled Refreshing the Service Culture, the Directorate is creating new
ways of working with children, young people and vulnerable families. These changes go
beyond those recommended by the Public Advocate in her Reports and will strengthen
cultural reforms within the Directorate.
The Panel is supportive of the Directorate’s openness and commitment to improvement
evidenced in the Refreshing the Service Culture. In particular, the Panel is supportive of the
Directorate continuing to build and foster partnerships with relevant authorities.
The Panel has been advised that the systemic and cultural changes occurring within the
Directorate and the ongoing recruitment of overseas staff is enhancing staff morale. There is
early evidence that staff are valued by Senior Officers in the Directorate.
The Directorate has adopted a disciplined project management approach to plan, monitor,
and review progress of the Refreshing the Service Culture projects. Overall, the reviews of
policies and practices currently occurring give the Panel confidence that the Refreshing the
Service Culture process will result in better outcomes for children and young people. The
Panel particularly supports the initiative to develop a Viewpoint Interactive System and
other processes and mechanisms which encourage children and young people’s voices to be
heard.
Monitoring the progress of the government commitments against the Public Advocate’s
recommendations is one component of the Refreshing the Service Culture. The Panel noted
that in an environment of limited resources the Directorate may need to undertake an
ongoing review of priorities in relation to implementation of the Panel monitored Projects.
3
The Panel noted that considerable progress has already been made in implementing the
government commitments. The reporting mechanisms developed by the Office for Children,
Youth and Family Support (OCYFS) are robust and allow for in-depth scrutiny of Project
outcomes.
The Panel anticipated that the focus of the reporting period to September 2012 would be on
the scoping and establishment of Projects. As the majority of the Projects are newly
established, the absence of extensive quantitative data was not of concern to the Panel. The
Panel anticipates that more qualitative data will be evident in subsequent reports from
OCYFS.
To determine the progress of the government’s commitments the Panel applied the
following two questions when considering the progress of the projects:
1. Are the projects meeting the objectives of the Government’s commitments to the
Public Advocate’s recommendations; and
2. Are the projects on track against projected implementation timeframes?
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 1
Recommendation 1 Milestone Panel Comments
All Projects appear to be on track.
Presentations on the Integrated Management System and the Supervision Model were provided to
the Panel and assisted the Panel’s understanding of these Projects.
Integrated Management System (IMS)
A review of all OCYFS policies and processes will allow a gap analysis to occur. This analysis will:

identify where practice and policy diverge;

allow for clarification of the roles of staff;

allow for the identification and, where necessary, the development of tools required by staff to
fulfil their duties and meet the needs of children, young people and their families; and

provide staff with training on the use of the IMS and the new tools.
There has been consultation both internally and externally. The first of 5 modules, being intake
and appraisal, are nearing completion.
Supervision Model
A staff survey on the use of supervision has been completed and the Panel looks forward to
receiving the results.
4
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 2
Recommendation 2 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the projects are on track however, the legislative review has not
commenced.
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 3
Recommendation 3 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the Projects are on track.
The Panel noted that the Supervision Project has been reviewed and is undergoing refreshing in respect of
supervision culture. As discussed in the Panel’s comments to recommendation 1, the Panel looks forward to
receiving the results of the staff supervision survey.
Training on decision making
The Panel noted that the tenders for decision making training are currently being sought. The Panel looks
forward to the development of risk assessment training and anticipates this training will be part of the roll
out of the Integrated Management System.
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 4
Recommendation 4 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the Projects are on track.
The Milestone Review Panel, the Complaints Unit, and the Decision Review Panel have been
established and are operational.
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 5
Recommendation 5 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted most of the projects are on track. The Panel noted that the Kinship Care Team is in
place and is reviewing kinship carer need. The Care Team staff have completed 102 out of a possible
172 visits to carers. Further improvement on assessments has been planned. The Panel looks
forward to seeing continued progress by the Panel’s 6 month review.
The Panel was impressed with the work of the Kinship Care Team and the Kinship Care Team
presentation to the Panel assisted with the Panel’s understanding of the progress of the Project.
5
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 6
Recommendation 6 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that a Project Officer has been appointed and the development of cultural care
plans for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people is progressing.
The Panel looks forward to being in a position to report on the development of services for migrant
and refugee families at their six month review.
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 7
Recommendation 7 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted work on Integrated Management System will improve electronic record keeping
however, the Directorate’s decision to go to an electronic record keeping system is dependent on a
number of factors such as, the suitability of the children and young people data and information
system (CHYPS); possible changes to the Territory’ record keeping legislation; and the
recommendations arising from the pending Auditor General’s report.
The Panel noted scoping of the Projects has commenced and that a delivery timeframe has not been
set for these Projects. The Panel appreciates these projects will be subject to an extended
implementation period and may not occur during the Panel’s tenure.
6
Milestone Review Panel
Members
Chair:
Mrs Narelle Hargreaves (Chair, Children and Youth Services Council)
Member:
Ms Anita Phillips (Public Advocate of the ACT)
Member:
Mr Graham Bashford (Deputy Chair, Community Services Directorate Internal
Audit and Review Committee).
Background
During 2011 and 2012 two significant reviews of Care and Protection Services have been
completed by the Public Advocate. These reviews have resulted in the following reports
being released:

The Public Advocate’s Report - Stage 1 Interim Report – A Review of the Emergency
Response Strategy for Children in Crisis, released on 14 October 2011; and

The Public Advocate’s Stage 2 Report - Emergency Response Strategy for Children in
Crisis in the ACT which was released on 30 May 2012.
The Public Advocate’s Report released on 14 October 2011 made the following
recommendations:
1. Urgently Review the Operations and Management Structure of the Emergency
Response for Children in Crisis in the ACT;
2. Improve Emergency Response Processes;
3. Monitoring and Provision of Placements;
4. Early Intervention; and
5. Specific recommendations in relation to Northern Bridging Services.
The ACT government has delivered the majority of the commitments made in the
Government Response to the Interim Report. Those that have not been delivered are linked
to the deliverables of the second Public Advocate report and the Auditor-General’s review.
The Public Advocate’s Stage 2 Report - Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis in
the ACT made seven major recommendations which in summary are:
1. Develop a Strategic Framework;
2. Implement the Strategic Framework through a change management process that will
address the current reactive culture;
3. Develop a staff training and development regime;
4. Develop and form on-going review mechanisms;
5. Review all Kinship Care and current processes;
6. Cultural Awareness; and
7. Improve Record Keeping
The Milestone Review Panel (Panel) was established as part of a response to
Recommendation 4 of the Public Advocate Stage 2 Report.
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The Government response to Recommendation 4 advised:
The Minister for Community Services will establish a Review Panel to monitor the
progress of the Office for Children, Youth and Family Support against the actions
outlined in this Government Response to the Public Advocate’s Review and report on
a quarterly basis for the next twelve months.
Methodology
The ACT Government’s response to the ACT Public Advocate’s report: Review of the
Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis in the ACT outlined commitments to
improving the integration and coordination of services for vulnerable children. The
Government’s commitments can be found at Attachment A.
The Community Services Directorate (CSD) is responsible for implementing the
ACT Government’s commitments.
The Milestone Review Panel (Panel) is responsible for monitoring the progress made by the
CSD in implementing the Government’s commitments to improve services for vulnerable
children. Progress of the Government’s commitments against the recommendations is the
basis for the Panel’s quarterly report.
The Panel will meet at three, six, nine and twelve month intervals. Secretariat support to the
Panel will be provided by the Community Services Directorate (Directorate).
Prior to each meeting of the Panel, the Office for Children, Youth and Family Support
(OCYFS) will provide the Panel with qualitative information and quantitative data and a draft
Summary Report. Information provided by OCYFS will detail the progress made towards
implementing the government commitments during the previous three months. The draft
Summary Report will form the basis of each Milestone Review Panel Report.
During each meeting of the Panel, the OCYFS will assist the Panel’s considerations by
providing presentations on the Projects being implemented to meet the Government’s
commitments. When required, the OCYFS will provide other information requested by the
Panel, further qualitative information on a specific Project and/or further quantitative data
relating to a specific Project.
The Panel will draw on the information and data provided by the OCYFS to complete a
Milestone Review Panel Report (Report) every three months. The Report will comprise
qualitative information and quantitative data provided by the OCYFS and the Panel’s
comments and conclusions on the progress achieved. The Panel will not be required to
make recommendations to the Minister regarding the progress achieved.
Following the Panel’s finalisation of the Report, the Panel will provide a copy of the Report
to the Children and Youth Services Council meeting for the Council’s information only.
Through the auspice of the Children and Youth Services Council, the Panel will provide the
Report to the Minister for Community Services who will release the Report publicly.
The Panel will cease following completion of the final (twelfth month) Report.
The Terms of Reference for the Panel is at Attachment B.
8
Progress against the commitment in the Government response to
the recommendations of the Public Advocate’s Review
The ACT Government Response to the Report of the Public Advocate released on
1 June 2012 provided an update on progress against the The Public Advocate’s Report Stage 1 Interim Report – A Review of the Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis
(Attachment A). This report indicated that any remaining work commitment from the
Government Response was dependent upon the second Public Advocate report and the
Auditor General’s report which is currently underway.
Apart from several specific items, the program of work to achieve the Government’s
commitment to the second Public Advocate’s Report (Public Advocate’s Stage 2 Report Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis in the ACT) is being implemented under
the Office for Children Youth and Family Support (OCYFS) quality agenda known as
Refreshing the Service Culture.
The Refreshing the Service Culture quality agenda provides the framework across the OCYFS
for improving quality and the work, and incorporates Care and Protection Services
improvements. The Refreshing the Service Culture framework has five major components:
Practice Improvement
Planning for the Future
Stakeholder Engagement and Feedback
Growing our Staff Capability
Legislative Review
These major components are the reference points throughout this document.
A number of the activities arising from the Government’s commitments (for example, the
Integrated Management System) will deliver action under more than one Public Advocate
recommendation as demonstrated in Figure 1 below.
Figure 1: Alignment of Refreshing the service culture with the PA Report
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Symbols used to indicate progress against the Government’s commitments
Traffic Light Legend
Deliverable is complete
Action is on track for completion on time and within scope
Action requires attention. It may be difficulty in achieving some parts of the
project scope, or there may be a delay in completion
Action will not be delivered on time or to the scope requirements
Work not commenced on the action yet
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Recommendation 1
Develop a Strategic Framework for implementation over the next three years. This should
encapsulate evidence based practice, supervision and mentoring mechanisms, case
management, planning and review, risk management and assessment processes and
forensic investigation, that will result in environment of good practice.
Recommendation 1 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the projects selected for Recommendation 1 have the potential to create
an environment of good practice for the delivery of services to children, young people and their
families. The Projects meet the government’s objectives of Recommendation 1.
The Projects are:

Integrated Management System

Quality Improvement Tools

5 Year Out of Home Care Strategic Plan

Refreshed Supervision Model
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 1
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
Launch of an OCYFS Quality Improvement Agenda –
Refreshing the Service Culture
A strategic framework for CPS
11
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 1
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Implementation of an Integrated Management System
which includes the development of:
-standardised policies and procedures
-deployment process flowcharts for all
procedures
-accountability package
-online CPS “Knowledge Portal”
A major project underway in the
Office.
Monthly updates indicate work
commenced in February. Staff have
been appointed, change champions
trained and review and development
of policies and procedures
underway. Staff participating
regularly in development of process
flows.
-an Integrated Management System for CPS
-implementation Review Report
Quality Improvement Tools
-case conference process used routinely for 13-16
year olds
A suite of activities to audit quality
and improve services for children
and young people
-case audit tool developed
-audit of OOHC standards of Out of Home Care
agencies
-operating Viewpoint Interactive System
12
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 1
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PLANNING FOR OUR FUTURE
A 5 Year Out of Home Care Strategic Plan
This will inform the strategic
framework and service delivery
models for out of home care. Project
officer appointed and work
underway
GROWING STAFF CAPABILITY
Refreshed Supervision Model
Improving the quality of supervision.
Project officer appointed in February
2012. Significant work achieved
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 1
Recommendation 1 Milestone Panel Comments
All Projects appear to be on track.
Presentations on the Integrated Management System and the Supervision Model were provided to the
Panel and assisted the Panel’s understanding of these Projects.
Integrated Management System (IMS)
A review of all OCYFS policies and processes will allow a gap analysis to occur. This analysis will:

identify where practice and policy diverge;

allow for clarification of the roles of staff

allow for the identification and, where necessary, the development of tools required by staff to fulfil
their duties and meet the needs of children, young people and their families; and

provide staff with training on the use of the IMS and the new tools.
There has been consultation both internally and externally. The first of 5 modules, being intake and
appraisal, is nearing completion.
Supervision Model
A staff survey on the use of supervision has been completed and the Panel looks forward to receiving the
results.
13
Recommendation 2
Implement this Strategic Framework through a change management process that will
address the current reactive culture. This should include the use of employee focus groups so
that all staff have a common understanding of the desired culture that reflects the actions of
a statutory child protection organisation. Such a change management should include a
review of the current systems and processes.
Recommendation 2 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the projects selected for Recommendation 2 address and expand on the
recommendation through a sophisticated change management program that includes not only
workforce but practice improvements, planning for the future etc.
The Panel were impressed by the Projects and their focus on early intervention and prevention.
The Projects are:

Implementation of an Integrated Management System;

Case Conferencing Service Model

Scoping a service model of Supported Contact and Transport

Legislative Review
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 2
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
Change Management Committee established as part of
the governance of the Integrated Management System.
Established
Change champions identified who meet regularly
Completed
Appointment of Senior Director OCYFS who has
responsibility for overseeing the implementation of the
Refreshing the Service Culture Quality agenda
Completed
14
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 2
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
Quality Practice and Compliance Unit Established in Care
and Protection Services under the restructure
Established
Separation of Senior Manager Care and Protection
Services and Senior Manager Care positions
Established
The Care and Protection Appraisal team has joined the
Intake Team as one new team and a Family Work team
has been created
Completed
Child Youth and Family Services Program implementation
Negotiations with Sexual Abuse and Child Abuse Team
(SACAT) co-locating regularly with Care and Protection
Services Intake
Commenced 1 March 2012 –
Implementation of new service
models progressing
Commenced
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Implementation of an Integrated Management System
which includes the development of:
A major project underway in the
Office.
-standardised policies and procedures
Work commenced in February. Staff
have been appointed, change
champions trained and review and
development of policies and
procedures underway.
-deployment process flowcharts for all procedures
-accountability package
-online CPS “Knowledge Portal”
-an Integrated Management System for CPS
-implementation Review Report
15
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 2
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
Expansion of case conferencing service model
Case conferencing for all 13-16 year
olds where Voluntary Care
agreements are being discussed and
model currently being trialled. This
addresses the commitment to hold
case conferences to divert young
people from statutory pathways.
PLANNING FOR OUR FUTURE
Scoping a service model of Supported Contact and
Transport
Draft service model developed
LEGISLATIVE REVIEW
Legislative Review
Also Recommendation 7. Project officer
appointed. This commences the work on
reviewing the Children and Young People
Act 2008 to develop a planned approach
to intervention, and reduce where
possible administrative burden.
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 2
Recommendation 2 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the projects are on track however, the legislative review has not
commenced.
16
Recommendation 3
Develop a staff training and development regime and ensure that this meshes with the
strategic framework and is tailored towards the acquisition and development of skills,
particularly for caseworkers and their supervisor. Training should be linked to competencies,
and be included in the process for advancement to higher duties.
Recommendation 3 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the Projects selected for Recommendation 3 have the potential to meet
the government’s objectives of Recommendation 3. The Panel notes that considerable progress has
been made in implementing the recommendations.
The Projects are:

Quality Improvement Tools

A refreshed supervision model

CPS Training Program refreshed and commenced

Training on decision making
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 2
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
A revised training program of core training for case
workers was approved in December 2011 and has been
implemented
Completed
Individual performance planning in place
Completed
A new system of “tracking training” has been introduced.
Completed
A training subcommittee has been established
Established
17
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 2
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Quality Improvement Tools
-case conference process used routinely for 13-16 year
olds
-case audit tool developed
-audit of OOHC standards of Out of Home Care agencies
-
-operating Viewpoint Interactive System
The viewpoint interactive tool that
will assist in recording the voice of
the child.
GROWING OUR STAFF CAPABILITY
Improving the quality of supervision.
Project Officer appointed in Feb
2012. Significant work achieved
A refreshed supervision model
CPS Training Program refreshed and commenced
Training programs currently being
planned but resource yet to be
assigned for this activity for full
refresh.
Training on decision making
Request for tender provision of
training currently underway
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 3
Recommendation 3 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the Projects are on track.
The Panel noted that the Supervision Project has been reviewed and is undergoing refreshing in respect of
supervision culture. As discussed in the Panel’s comments to recommendation 1, the Panel looks forward to
receiving the results of the staff supervision survey.
Training on decision making
The Panel noted that the tenders for decision making training are currently being sought. The Panel looks
forward to the development of risk assessment training and anticipates this training will be part of the roll
out of the Integrated Management System.
18
Recommendation 4
Development and formalisation of on-going review mechanisms. There is a clear need
for an internal monitoring and performance review process, dealing with complaints
and ensuring that “duty of care” and natural justice is adhered to. In addition, an
external oversight function, such as an Office of Children’s Guardian, should be engaged
to carry out a micro review, based on the method of the Review, at 3,6,9, and 12 months
to monitor practice improvements or otherwise, to report finding directly to the
Director-General.
Recommendation 4 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the Projects selected for Recommendation 4 have the potential to meet
the government’s objectives of Recommendation 4.
The Projects are:

Quality Improvement Tools

Finalisation of Out of Home Care standards

Complaints Unit Embedded

Decision Review Panel Embedded

Training on decision making
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 4
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in
Government Response
Milestone Review Panel established
First meeting September 2012
Complaints Unit established
Established May 2012
Decision Review Panel established
Established May 2012
CSD Internal Audit and Review Committee commenced
requesting updates
September 2012
19
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 5
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Quality Improvement Tools
-case conference process used routinely for 13-16 year
olds
-case audit tool developed
-audit of OOHC standards of Out of Home Care agencies
-operating Viewpoint Interactive System
PLANNING FOR OUR FUTURE
Work has commenced on
development of a case audit tool
that will assist with internal
monitoring of performance
Consultant engaged. Audits
underway
Finalisation of Out of Home Care standards
Project officer appointed. Work
underway.
STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT AND FEEDBACK
Complaints Unit Embedded
Following establishment of the
complaints unit and decision review
panel further work is progressing on
finalising staffing, refining
procedures and training for all staff.
Decision Review Panel Embedded
GROWING OUR STAFF CAPABILTY
Training on decision making
Request for tender provision of
training currently underway
Milestone Panel’s Response Recommendation 4
Recommendation 4 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that most of the Projects are on track.
The Milestone Review Panel, the Complaints Unit, and the Decision Review Panel have been
established and are operational.
20
Recommendation 5
Review all kinship care and current processes. There is a need to improve initial
assessments, include the needs of the children and young people to ensure their “voice” is
heard, develop comprehensive case planning that includes the level of support required
where there is evidence that the family needs the ongoing involvement of the statutory
body, and create a review process to determine those kinship families that no longer require
ongoing support.
Recommendation 5 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the Projects selected for Recommendation 5 have the potential to meet
the government’s objectives of Recommendation 5.
The Projects are:

Implementation of an Integrated Management System

Quality Improvement Tools

Comprehensive Kinship Package

Finalisation of Out of Home Care standards

A 5 Year Out of Home Care Strategic Plan

Complaints Unit Embedded

Decision Review Panel Embedded

Training on Decision Making
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 5
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
Kinship Care Team Established
Fully operational
Ongoing funding of Relationships Australia to provide
mediation and relationship counseling to kinship carers
In place
Australian Childhood Foundation contracted to provide
therapeutic support for kinship care placements
Anticipated contract will be finalized
by end of September
21
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 5
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Implementation of an Integrated Management System
which includes the development of:
-standardised policies and procedures
-deployment process flowcharts for all procedures
-accountability package
-online CPS “Knowledge Portal”
-an Integrated Management System for CPS
-implementation Review Report
Quality Improvement Tools
-case conference process used routinely for 13-16 year
olds
A major project underway in the
Office for Children Youth and Family
Support.
Modification of policies and
procedures will include modifying
care planning and annual review
reporting tools to promote a more
planned and individualized approach
to the needs of each child
Interactive tool that will assist in
recording the voice of the child.
Work progressing
-case audit tool developed
-audit of OOHC standards of Out of Home Care agencies
-
-operating Viewpoint Interactive System
Comprehensive Kinship Package
-Review of all current kinship carer needs completed
Reviews commenced. Eighty
completed
-Comprehensive case planning for current kinship carers
completed
Kinship Care Team has commenced
visits to asses needs.
-Assessment of new Kinship Carers by Kinship Team
22
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 5
PROGRESS
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the
Service Culture Quality Agenda
PLANNING FOR OUR FUTURE
Finalisation of Out of Home Care standards
Project officer appointed. Work
underway.
A 5 Year Out of Home Care Strategic Plan
STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT AND FEEDBACK
Complaints Unit Embedded
Decision Review Panel Embedded
GROWING OUR STAFF CAPABILTY
Training on decision making
Following establishment of the
complaints unit and decision review
panel further work is progressing on
finalising staffing, refining
procedures and training for all staff.
Request for tender provision of
training currently underway
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 5
Recommendation 5 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted most of the projects are on track.
The Panel noted that the Kinship Care Team is in place and is reviewing kinship carer need.
The Care Team staff have completed 102 out of a possible 172 visits to carers. Further improvement
on assessments has been planned. The Panel looks forward to seeing continued progress by the
Panel’s 6 month review.
The Panel was impressed with the work of the Kinship Care Team and the Kinship Care Team
presentation to the Panel assisted with the Panel’s understanding of the progress of the Project.
23
Recommendation 6
Cultural Awareness The culture of all children/young people must be identified and
appropriately supported, and the best use of available resources should be made to support
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children/young people. In addition, the development of
a program to support the cultural safety of children/young people from other cultures
particularly recently arrived refuges is strongly supported. All staff commencing in Care and
Protection Services should receive training in cultural awareness.
Recommendation 6 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the Projects selected for Recommendation 6 have the potential to meet
the government’s objectives of Recommendation 6.
The Project is:

Increased Practitioner Cultural Competence
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 6
COMMENT
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government Response
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Service Redesign is
underway in the Community Services Directorate
The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement
Service is being established as part of the Children Youth
and Family Support Program
Companion House is funded to deliver a refugee and asylum
seeker Child, Youth and Family Services Program.
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the Service
Culture Quality Agenda
PRACTICE IMPROVEMENT
Increased Practitioner Cultural Competence
This project will achieve - a)90% of
cultural care plans finalised for
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
children in care of the DirectorGeneral, and b) improve recording of
relevant details about children and
young people with culturally and
linguistically diverse backgrounds.
Project officer assigned is yet to
commence.
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 6
24
Recommendation 6 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted that a Project Officer has been appointed and the development of cultural care
plans for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people is progressing.
The Panel looks forward to being in a position to report on the development of services for migrant
and refugee families at their six month review.
Recommendation 7
Improved Record Keeping. Care and Protection Services needs to determine whether the
primary record keeping function will be a paper file or an electronic system as currently
neither function will be a paper file or an electronic system as currently neither function is
efficient of effective. The decision needs to be supported by policy and include a mechanism
for the child or young person to be able to access their record should they make the request.
Staff need to be trained in evidence based case recording where the decisions and reasons
for decisions are diligently recorded, and include the signature of the decision maker or
delegated officer. In addition, CHYPS the current electronic system needs updating. Case
management programs from other jurisdictions may serve to guide purchase of this
enhancement.
Recommendation 7 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel concluded that the Projects selected for Recommendation 7 have the potential to meet
the government’s objectives of Recommendation 7.
The Projects are:

Training on decision making

Scope Electronic Record

Legislative Review
25
PROGRESS OF PROJECTS TO ACHIEVE THE
COMMENT
COMMITMENT IN THE GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
TO RECOMMENDATION 7
PROGRESS
Already underway and identified in Government
Response
Nil
Work to be delivered under the Refreshing the Service
Culture Quality Agenda
GROWING OUR STAFF CAPABILTY
Training on decision making
Request for tender provision of
training currently underway
PLANNING FOR THE FUTURE
Scope Electronic Record
Not commenced.
LEGISLATIVE REVIEW
Legislative Review
Project officer appointed
Milestone Panel’s Response to Recommendation 7
Recommendation 7 Milestone Panel Comments
The Panel noted work on Integrated management System will improve electronic record keeping
however, the Directorate’s decision to go to an electronic record keeping system is dependent on a
number of factors such as, the suitability of CHYPS; possible changes to the Territory’s record
keeping legislation; and the recommendations arising from the pending Auditor General’s report.
The Panel noted scoping of the Projects has commenced and that a delivery timeframe has not been
set for these Projects. The Panel appreciates these projects will be subject to an extended
implementation period and may not occur during the Panel’s tenure.
26
Attachment A - ACT Government Response to the Report of the
Public Advocate Interim Report
The ACT Government Response to the Report of the Public Advocate Interim Report was
provided on 22 November 2011. Progress has been made to implement the Government’s
commitments. The Government is committed to ensuring this progress is sustained.
Interim Report Recommendation 1
Urgently review the Operations and Management Structure of the Emergency Response for
Children in Crisis in the ACT. The Public Advocate of the ACT should be engaged and resourced
to immediately undertake Stage Two of this Review.
The ACT Government Agreed in Part to this recommendation.
Progress: The Public Advocate completed the second stage of her review in accordance with the
terms of reference outlined in the Government Response to the Interim Report and provided
her Final Report on 1 June 2012.
The Auditor General has commenced a Performance Audit of Care and Protection Services and a
final report of this review is due to be presented to the Assembly during late 2012.
Interim Report Recommendation 2
Emergency Response Processes: The Director-General Community Services Directorate, be
called upon to immediately establish a reception centre/facility as part of the Emergency
response for children in crisis.
The ACT Government Agreed to this recommendation.
Progress: A property suitable to be used as a Reception Centre was provided by Housing ACT
and fitted out in December 2011 to provide a welcoming and safe environment for children who
come into care and do not have an immediate placement with either extended family or foster
care.
The Centre has been used on three occasions since its establishment. The operation policy and
procedures have been drafted and a checklist for operational use has been finalised. Early
response to the model has been positive and it is meeting a critical need, particularly for sibling
groups who have experienced trauma and are best placed together.
27
The Director General, Community Services Directorate, authorises that an Operations Policy
and Procedures Manual for caseworkers and direct care staff be finalised and implemented as
a matter of priority.
Progress: The development of clearer policies and procedures were prioritised into four areas:
intake and risk assessment, placements, kinship care and restoration of children to families.
Policies and procedures have been drafted and consultation with the sector has been completed
regarding the placement policy and kinship care model of service.
The Integrated Management System project commenced in February 2012. The project aims to
provide caseworkers with tools and improved processes to assist in their decision making,
access to revised policies, procedures and delegations and improved compliance requirements.
The change process will be implemented throughout 2012-2013.
Interim Report Recommendation 3
Monitoring and Provision of Placements: The position of Children’s Guardian be resourced and
formalised under the auspice of the Public Advocate of the ACT.
The ACT Government Agreed that this recommendation should be further considered as part of
the Performance Audit by the Auditor General.
Progress: The Performance Audit being undertaken by the Auditor General will include
consideration of the roles and responsibilities of statutory oversight bodies.
Interim Report Recommendation 4
Early Intervention: Response and Intervention Teams should be relocated out to the regions.
The ACT Government Agreed in Part to this recommendation.
Progress: A realignment of Care and Protection Services has been finalised. In the new structure
the teams will continue to be located in the central Moore Street Civic building but will be
operationally separated into North and South Canberra teams.
The new structure aims to provide a child and family the same case worker from the time of the
initial report of risk through the appraisal process. Community based Care and Protection
Workers are being re-located to the three Child and Family Centres to provide outreach
services. The placement of these Child Protection community workers will encourage additional
community engagement and increased coordination of services across agencies and a
community level.
28
The workers will have a renewed focus on pre-natal work, and engage with families at the
earliest possible point.
Interim Report Recommendation 5
Recommendations specifically in relation to Northern Bridging Support Services: An
independent mediator be engaged to conduct mediation between NBSS and CPS. In addition,
immediate payment of outstanding monies must be arranged.
The ACT Government Agreed to this recommendation.
Progress: All outstanding invoices have been paid. Mediation has been offered to Northern
Bridging Services but to date.
29
Attachment B - Milestone Review Panel Terms of Reference
FUNCTION
Purpose
The ACT Government’s response to the ACT Public Advocate’s report: Review of the
Emergency Response Strategy for Children in Crisis in the ACT outlined commitments to
improving the integration and coordination of services for vulnerable children.
The Community Services Directorate is responsible for implementing the
ACT Government’s commitments.
Role
The Milestone Review Panel will monitor and report against progress made to address the
service needs of vulnerable children by:

reviewing information provided by the Community Services Directorate through the
means of a spreadsheet that identifies the milestones to be attained and the actions
taken to attain the milestones; and

compiling a Milestone Review Report which reports on the actions taken by Community
Services Directorate against the identified milestones.
The Milestone Review Panel will not be required to make recommendations to the Minister
or make public statements regarding the Community Services Directorate’s progress.
MEMBERSHIP
Composition of the Milestone Review Panel
The Milestone Review Panel members are



Mrs Narelle Hargreaves, OAM – Chair
Mr Graham Bashford
Ms Anita Phillips
Community Services Directorate officials may attend each meeting.
Term of Appointment
Appointments to the Milestone Review Panel will cease following completion of the final
(twelfth month) progress report.
30
Vacating position on the Milestone Review Panel
Members are to notify the Minister for Community Services in writing of their intention to
vacate their position on the Milestone Review Panel, with a copy to the Chair.
Role of Chair
The role of the Chair is to facilitate orderly and constructive discussion between Milestone
Review Panel members. In the event a spokesperson is required, the Chair is the
spokesperson for the Milestone Review Panel.
In the event Milestone Review Panel members are unable to agree about any issue relating
to the monitoring of, or progress against, the commitments made in the Government
response to the ACT Public Advocate’s report, the Chair’s decision will be final.
Secretariat support
Secretariat support to the Milestone Review Panel will be provided by the Community
Services Directorate. The Secretariat will –

compile agendas and associated papers/information in preparation for Milestone
Review Panel meetings;

take minutes at scheduled meetings,

provide a liaison between the Community Services Directorate and the Milestone
Review Panel; and

assist the Milestone Review Panel to prepare quarterly Milestone Review Reports to be
provided to the Minister for Community Services.
OPERATION
Meetings
The Milestone Review Panel will convene as close as possible to the following dates–
26 September 2012;
14 December 2012;
14 March 2013; and
14 June 2013
All meeting papers, including the Community Services Directorate’s progress report against
commitments, will be provided to Milestone Review Panel members no later than one week
prior to the Milestone Review Panel’s scheduled meeting date.
31
Quorum
In order for decisions to be made at meetings the Chair plus one Milestone Review Panel
member must be present.
If a quorum is not able to be reached a substitute Milestone Review Panel meeting must be
scheduled to occur as soon as practicable.
When necessary, agreement on decisions can be reached out-of-session.
Reporting
The Milestone Review Panel will provide a copy of the Milestone Review Report to the
Children and Youth Services Council for their information only.
Through the auspice of the Children and Youth Services Council, the Milestone Review Panel
will provide the Milestone Review Report to the Minister for Community Services no later
than the last working day of –
October 2012 - 3 month Milestone Review Report;
January 2013 – 6 month Milestone Review Report;
April 2013 – 9 month Milestone Review Report; and
July 2013 - 12 month Milestone Review Report.
Remuneration
Members of the Milestone Review Panel will receive remuneration in accordance with the
ACT Remuneration Tribunal Determination2011 (No 1).
Contact details
Secretariat Milestone Review Panel
Mr David Matthews
Phone: 6207 4433
Email: [email protected]
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