Queensland Corrective Services (QCS) Child Safety Unit was established in 2004 to participate in the whole-of-government response to the recommendations of the Crime and Misconduct Commission's (CMC) report, Protecting Children: An Inquiry into Abuse of Children in Foster Care.
The Child Safety Unit's role is to:
As part of child safety reforms, one of the key changes to affect QCS custodial and community corrections staff will be the requirement to provide relevant information on "reportable offenders" to QPS for the National Child Protection Register.
On January 1, 2005, the Child Protection Offender Reporting scheme commenced in Queensland. The supporting legislation is the Child Protection (Offender Reporting) Act 2004.
The register was established to manage offenders who have committed sexual offences and other serious offences against children. It recognises that certain offenders should continue to be monitored after their release back into the community. It requires particular offenders to keep police informed of their whereabouts and other personal details for a period of time, to reduce the likelihood that they will reoffend. QCS staff will play a key role assisting police maintain the register's information.
The following categories of people will be required to report to police and will be referred to as a "reportable offender":
The following types of offences, subject to minimum sentencing thresholds being met, constitute a reportable offence:
There are a number of factors that determine the length of a reporting period, including the seriousness of the offence committed and the number of reportable offences the person has been convicted of.
Details to be reported include information such as the offender's name, or previous names, date of birth, address or place they can be found, employment details, vehicle description and any identifying marks, such as a tattoo. Information about any children that reside in the household or any children with whom they have unsupervised contact is also required.
For further information please refer to the "Child Protection Offender Register Information for Staff November 2004" which can be found on the Queensland Corrective Services intranet site under Policy and Programs, ChildSafety.
Queensland Corrective Services Child Safety Unit will provide regular information updates to staff. Information is also available by phoning (07) 3239 0195.
There are a number of resources available that provide further information on child safety.
Information on the following organisations involved in child safety can be found on the internet:
Department of Child Safety www.childsafety.qld.gov.au
Department of Communities www.communities.qld.gov.au
Commission for Children and Young People and Child Guardian www.ccypcg.qld.gov.au
National Association for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect www.napcan.org.au
International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect www.ispcan.org
Other web resources
The Crime and Misconduct Commission report Protecting Children: An Inquiry Into Abuse of Children in Foster Care - March 2004 can be downloaded at www.cmc.qld.gov.au
Relevant child safety legislation can be accessed through www.legislation.qld.gov.au
Queensland Corrective Services staff can contact the QCS Child Safety Unit on (07) 3239 0195 or logon to the QCS intranet Child Safety Unit area, under Policy and Programs.