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Under our legislation, we don’t investigate individual children’s and families’ circumstances. If you suspect a child in Queensland is experiencing harm or neglect, please contact the Department of Child Safety, Seniors and Disability Services.

Residential Care Review

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Residential Care Review

Children and young people who cannot live safely with their parents require different kinds of care arrangements depending on their individual needs. Residential care is designed for teenagers whose needs mean they are unable to be in a home-based care type, including living with their relatives, kinship carers or foster carers.

In July 2023, the Queensland Government announced a review of Queensland’s residential care system. The review responds to the community’s, sector’s, and QFCC’s concerns about the increasing number of children and infants in this type of care and their life outcomes.

The Department of Child Safety, Seniors and Disability Services led the review, and QFCC Principal Commissioner Luke Twyford was asked to provide independent oversight and advice on the review’s outcomes.

The review included:

  • regional sector forums to hear directly from those in the system about the current challenges and opportunities
  • site inspections of the differing residential care models in operation in Queensland
  • a public survey
  • written submissions
  • statewide forums for sector members and children in the system with lived experience of residential care
  • a ministerial Roundtable
  • production of a Reform Roadmap outlining the critical actions that will be taken.  

The review included a range of opportunities for stakeholders and people with lived experience of residential care to engage, inform and shape the review and its deliverables.

The QFCC’s role in the review

The Principal Commissioner provided independent oversight of the review process and provided government with strategic, independent advice on how Queensland can improve outcomes and prevent harm to children and young people.

We published monthly reports detailing the progress of the review. You can find these at the bottom of this page.

The findings of our independent oversight are included in our response to the Queensland Government’s Residential Care Roadmap. We will oversee the implementation of actions included in the roadmap.

The Residential Care Roadmap

The department has released its Residential Care Roadmap, which outlines the 31 actions needed to improve outcomes for young Queenslanders. 

The roadmap follows an intensive, six-month review period, hearing from hundreds of young people, frontline workers, sector representatives and policy-makers about residential care. The views, experiences and evidence gathered throughout the review process have informed the department’s actions detailed in the roadmap.

View the department’s Residential Care Roadmap at Queensland Residential Care Systems Review - Department of Child Safety, Seniors and Disability Services (dcssds.qld.gov.au)

QFCC’s response to the Residential Care Roadmap

Our response to the Residential Care Roadmap is included below.

As part of our strategic oversight of the review, we spoke with more than 200 workers, visited 16 residential care homes, and hosted workshops with young people who have experience living in residential care. The outcomes informed our response to the roadmap.

The QFCC supports the 31 actions government is now taking to reform the residential care system. Our response provides further actions that are required for the roadmap to be successfully implemented.

We will continue to provide an ongoing oversight role in the implementation of the roadmap over the next three years.

Too often, we forget or fail to acknowledge that young people in care are indisputably the experts of the Child Safety system.

As part of our role in overseeing the Queensland Review of Residential Care, we sponsored a forum to hear from young people with lived experience of residential care. The report, I was raised by a checklist, was developed to share the information gathered.