Blueprint for Youth Justice in the ACT 2012-22

Annual Progress Report 2015

Appendix A

Detailed progress on actions

Strategy 1 - Focusing on early intervention of contact with the youth justice systemBetter Services
Strategy 2 - Diverting children and young people from the formal justice system
Strategy 3 - Engaging and encouraging the participation of children, young people and their families
Strategy 4 - Providing intensive individualised support to children and young people
Strategy 5 - Connecting and reintegrating children and young people into a home and community through effective throughcare
Strategy 6 - Creating an integrated whole of government and community system to support children and young people
Strategy 7 - Building a strong and smart workforce

Strategy 1 - Focusing on early intervention and prevention of contact with the youth justice system

Action

Initiative

Status

1.1 Develop an across agency early identification approach to identify children and young people who are at risk of contact with the youth justice system

(see also action 6.2)

  • Prevention and Early Intervention Principle Statement sets out the Community Services Directorate’s commitment to the provision of prevention and early intervention services for individuals, families and communities. Practitioners will be assisted in identifying opportunities to provide support to reduce risk factors and promote protective factors.
  • Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS), commenced 1 July 2015, work to provide a better service response to children, young people and families requiring a care, protection or youth justice response. CYPS will deliver better client outcomes by providing a trauma-informed response that focuses on diversion, protection, restoration, transition, and permanency. This new service will improve information sharing and continuity of case management across the child protection and youth justice areas. It will also allow earlier identification and support to be offered to families for children and young people who are at risk of entering the youth justice system.
  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, continues to deliver a new way of working with families who have complex needs and are involved with multiple services. The initiative delivers an intensive cross-government support package to a family that is led by a single worker and family plan. In 2014-15,
    30 families (154 family members) were involved in this initiative.
  • Child, Youth and Family Services Program (CYFSP) continues to support children, young people and their families through a range of mechanisms including youth engagement, case management, intensive intervention, therapeutic services and specific services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and young people from a culturally and linguistically diverse background.
  • Child Youth and Family Gateway within CYFSP provides a single point of contact for information, initial support and engagement for children, young people and their families with a range of services throughout their local community.
  • Youth Alcohol Diversion Program (formerly the Early Intervention Prevention Program) continues to be funded by ACT Health and ACT Policing. The Program provides diversion to education for under-age drinkers (with a parent or guardian) who are intoxicated, in possession of, or consuming alcohol in a public place.
  • Child and Family Centres (CFCs), located at Gungahlin, Tuggeranong and West Belconnen, work with local children, families and community organisations to determine the service need, and the best way services might be provided to enable children to reach their potential and to strengthen families. Government and community organisations work in partnership with CFC staff to deliver universal, targeted and tailored services to the local community. Services are delivered in outreach settings such as the family home, the child’s school or a community setting, or directly at a CFC.

Complete

1.2 Develop a comprehensive framework to lead best practice in engaging young people in education, training or work

(see also actions 4.1; 4.2; 5.1; 5.5, 7.5)

  • National Partnership Agreement on Youth Attainment and Transition establishes targets to support the successful transition of young people to education, training and employment.
  • ACT Youth Commitment (the Commitment)establishes a shared responsibility between schools, Canberra Institute of Technology, Registered Training Organisations (RTOs), community organisations, employers and parents to ensure no young person is lost from education, training or employment.
  • Priorities Support Program,managed by the Education and Training Directorate, connects RTOs with community service providers that deliver wrap-around services, such as life skills training and mentoring to support training delivery. RTOs provide accredited training programs that maximise employment, career development or further training success for young people from disadvantaged groups who have experienced barriers to access and success in training.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employment Action Plan 2014-17 builds partnerships and provides new pathways to education and employment, and enhances choice and opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  • Youth Engagement Services are provided by Belconnen Community Services, Woden Community Services, YWCA of Canberra, Northside Community Services and Anglicare ACT under CYFSP to support young people who are disengaged or at risk of disengaging from family and other services. Youth engagement services are delivered through a range of strategies including drop-in, assertive engagement and street outreach. In 2014-15:
    • 4,550 new young people accessed youth engagement services, and
    • 741 youth engagement activities and events were held.
  • Murrumbidgee Education and Training Centre (METC) works in partnership with the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) to provide a range of education and training options for young people in Bimberi. Students receive individual tutoring and participate in literacy and numeracy skills development, art, woodwork, music, computers, fitness and horticulture and the opportunity to complete their year 10 and year 12 certificates. Students can also participate in vocational certificates. Since 2011, a total of 127 young people have received nationally recognised qualifications through METC.
  • External trainers also deliver a range of programs in Bimberi that include a barista course, hospitality, training in interview skills, résumé preparation and other industry ready courses such as a Certificate in Business. Additionally, young people have been able to engage in offsite work experience, such as in construction, to build their practical and theoretical skills to support them to transition to the workforce.
  • Improving Educational Outcomes Committee, established in November 2014, works to improve educational outcomes for children and young people on care and protection or youth justice orders.

Complete

1.3 Provide culturally appropriate mental health services to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people
(see also actions 3.1; 3.2)

  • Mental Health, Justice Health and Alcohol and Drug Services are provided by ACT Health in a range of settings. Services include health assessments and care for young people in Bimberi, hospital-based specialist services, forensic mental health services, therapeutic rehabilitation, counselling, supported accommodation and other community-based services.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health Service employs a Mental Health Liaison Officer and Clinical Nurse Consultant to improve access to mental health services, and outcomes for members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. Staff promote services that are sensitive to the cultural beliefs, values and practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
  • Aboriginal Mental Health Liaison Officer, located at Gugan Gulwan, provides consultation and liaison services to all mental health teams, Aboriginal youth services, adult health services and other stakeholders. The liaison officer also provides support to young people in Bimberi at the request of Forensic Mental Health services.
  • Clinical Nurse Consultant position, established in 2012, is based at the Winnunga Nimmityjah Aboriginal Health Service. The Consultant provides specialist mental health consultation and liaison services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who access services at Winnunga and the surrounding community.
  • Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS)implemented a number of improvements in 2014-15, including:
    • establishing a Bimberi CAMHS liaison role;
    • establishing a child early intervention program;
    • addressing comorbidity through training;
    • enhanced and routine screening;
    • establishing and strengthening liaison and consultation pathways with youth alcohol and drug services; and
    • providing secondary consultation.
  • Yarning Program, facilitated by Relationships Australia, is delivered to young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young men at Bimberi, as needed. The program offers young men an opportunity to talk about issues that are affecting them in a culturally appropriate environment.
  • Case Management and Support (MPower) operational group provides intensive, flexible support for young people involved with the youth justice system through interagency collaboration and a case management approach. The group works with community organisations to provide better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and high risk young people and their families, particularly when there are concerns about a young person’s mental health.

Complete

1.4 Establish coordinated actions across government and community to implement evidence-based programs to address behavioural disorders in children (5 to 12 years)

  • Child Development Service has been established (commencing 2016) to support families with concerns about their child’s development. This may include concerns with speech and language, movement, hand skills, self care, social or emotional development. The new service will provide assessment and referral for children 0-6 years, as well as children up to 8 years with complex needs who have not had a previous diagnosis. An autism assessment is also available for children aged up to 12 years. Some initial therapy sessions for children who are not eligible for the National Disability Insurance Scheme will also be provided.
  • Two trauma-informed services are being delivered to children who have experienced trauma, abuse and/or neglect:
    • Melaleuca Place, launched in 2014, is a trauma recovery centre that supports children recovering from abuse and neglect. The centre provides intensive trauma-informed therapeutic services to children (0-12) who have involvement with the child protection system.
    • Child At Risk Health Unit (CARHU) provides specialist health services to children, young people (0-18) and their families who have been affected by abuse and neglect. Specialist medical and therapeutic services delivered to children include paediatric and developmental assessments, nursing health and wellbeing screens, out of home care clinics, counselling, therapeutic interventions, in-patient and emergency department consultations, education and training.
  • Ricky Stuart Foundation, in partnership with the ACT Government and Marymead, is constructing an innovative respite centre for children with disability aged 5–12 years, which will also address behavioural disorders. The ACT Government committed $1.075m plus land to the project in the 2014–15 budget, and the Ricky Stuart Foundation has partnered with the local business community to deliver this project, featuring innovative physical and sensory design, including recreational spaces. The plans include a six-bedroom home that will provide short term respite for families with children with disability.

Work underway

1.6 Further develop care and protection services to improve outcomes for children and young people who are involved in out of home care (see also actions 4.1;5.1; 6.2; 7.7)

  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20) aims to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and young people and their families who have contact with the child protection and out of home care systems. It strengthens existing child protection and out of home care services by introducing new services and reforms to ensure children and young people receive protection when needed. The strategy aims to create a therapeutic and trauma-informed system, extend the continuum of care to care leavers up to the age of 21 years and strengthen high risk families.
  • Key achievements to date include:
    • Commencement of training in trauma-informed care;
    • Establishment of a Birth Parent Advocacy Support Service;
    • Commencement of a new carer subsidy structure and therapeutic assessments for all children and young people entering care;
    • Progression of three sets of legislative amendments to the Children and Young People Act 2008;
    • Establishment of the interim Children and Youth Services Ministerial Advisory Council; and
    • Expansion of the Mother and Baby Unit operated by Karinya House.
  • Integrated Statutory Services project combined the functions of child protection and youth justice services to progress
  • Human Services Blueprint and A Step Up for Our Kids. This work has supported the establishment of a new service delivery model known as Child and Youth Protection Services.
  • Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS), commenced 1 July 2015, work to provide a better service response to children, young people and families requiring a care, protection or youth justice response. CYPS will deliver better client outcomes by providing a trauma-informed response that focuses on diversion, protection, restoration, transition, and permanency. This new service will improve information sharing and provide continuity of case management removing duplication and barriers to effective service delivery.
  • Cultural Services Team has been established in Child and Youth Protection Services to deliver the best possible life outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people. The team provides cultural support to case workers, promotes cultural planning in case management, and engages Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and their families.

Complete

1.7 Improve access and better target alcohol and other drugs (AOD) services for children and young people

(see also action 1.5)

  • Alcohol and Other Drugs Diversion Program (formerly the Early Intervention Prevention Program)operates under a partnership agreement with ACT Policing and ACT Health. Under the program, alcohol and other drug offenders are diverted away from the criminal justice system and referred to assessment and education programs. The:
  • Youth Alcohol Diversion componentprovides diversion to education for under-age drinkers who are intoxicated, in possession of, or consuming alcohol in a public place. In 2014-15, 46 young people were diverted to a health assessment and information session.
  • Illicit Drug Diversion component provides diversion to education for people who are found in possession of illicit drugs for personal use alone. In
    2014-15, 77 young people were diverted to the program.
  • ACT Policing Crime Reduction Education and Diversion (CRED) teamcontinues to offer education and awareness presentations in relation to drugs and alcohol in ACT secondary schools. In 2014-15, the CRED team delivered drug and alcohol presentations to over 3,170 school students in 16 secondary schools.
  • Alcohol, Smoking and Substance Involvement Screening Test (eASSIST), Child and Youth Protection Services implemented this electronic tool in 2015. eASSIST is designed to identify the presence and extent of risky alcohol and drug use, as well as brief interventions to support affected persons. The tool has been endorsed by the Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Association.
  • Alcohol and Drug Services, provided by ACT Health, continue to provide counselling and psychotherapy services to young people aged 12-25 years. Treatment occurs in a range of settings including the community, in Bimberi and other in-patient settings.
  • Court Alcohol and Drug Assessment Service (CADAS) continues to engage young people in alcohol and drug treatment plans during Court proceedings and as part of their Court orders. Young people are referred by a Magistrate for case management and support, or further referral to a specialised treatment service.

Complete

Improve mental health outcomes for young people and access to mental health services

(see also action 1.3)

  • ACT Health Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) Model of Care provides a framework designed to enhance service provision, ensure better service transition and provide developmentally-appropriate mental health services for 0-25 year olds. In 2014-15, ACT Health provided 64,933 community occasions of service to young people aged 0-17.
  • Recommendations implemented in 2014-15 from a recent review of the Model of Care include:
    • establishing a Bimberi CAMHS liaison role;
    • establishing a child early intervention program;
    • addressing comorbidity through training;
    • enhanced and routine screening;
    • establishing and strengthening liaison and consultation pathways with youth alcohol and drug services; and
    • providing secondary consultation.
  • Bungee Program, delivered in Belconnen and Tuggeranong, and promotes social and emotional wellbeing, and increased resilience of young people identified as being at risk of mental illness, through the provision of early intervention strategies.
  • Step Up-Step Down service, developed in 2013 by ACT Health in partnership with the Mental Illness Fellowship of Victoria, provides a six-bed facility as an alternative to hospitalisation for young people aged 18-25 years who are experiencing moderate to severe mental health issues. This service complements another Step Up-Step Down service (STEPS), previously established in 2008, that caters to young people aged 13 to 17 years.
  • Young people are followed up by clinicians at Bimberi seven days after release into the community. Clinicians liaise with community mental health teams, Child and Youth Protection Services, community organisations and families for a continuation of care.
  • Mental Health, Justice Health and Alcohol and Drug Services are provided by ACT Health in a range of settings including adult and youth correctional facilities. This support includes health assessments and care for young people in Bimberi, hospital-based specialist services, therapeutic rehabilitation, counselling, supported accommodation and other community-based services. In 2014-15,
    94 per cent of all young people admitted to Bimberi had a health assessment completed within 24 hours of detention.

Complete

Top

Strategy 2 - Diverting children and young people from the formal justice system

Action

Initiative

Status

2.1 Increase restorative justice options for children and young people

(see also action 2.2).

  • Restorative Justice (group conferencing)has progressed from a trial phase to regular practice for all eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and first time offenders. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people are supported in this process by an Indigenous Guidance Partner.In 2014-15, 147 young people were referred to restorative justice, including 43 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people. Seventy-three (49%) young people participated in the conferencing process.
  • Restorative justice is a voluntary process and the young person may or may not decide to proceed. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people may choose the restorative justice process as an alternative to Galambany Court.
  • Restorative justice is continued through the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Justice Partnership 2015-18 Action Plan, which will report on initiatives to reduce the over representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in the youth justice system.

Complete

2.2 Deliver ACT Policing diversionary measures that meet or exceed targets

(see also actions 1.6; 2.1).

  • ACT Policing use three key performance measures (since 2013-14) designed to increase support for early intervention and diversion of eligible offenders, including young people:
  • Restorative Justice referral targets for eligible young people of 110 or more and 95 per cent of all eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people
  • SupportLink service referral target of 5,500 or more persons (including young people) to provide general, victim, mental health and road trauma support to community members affected by crime
  • Drug diversion program referral target of 80 or more referrals for persons (including young people) to allow early intervention and diversion from the criminal justice system, where appropriate.
 

2013-14

2014-15

Restorative justice referrals - young people

No. of young people referred

111

117

Proportion of eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people (%)

98.3

92.3

Community support agency referrals - including young people

No. of persons referred to Supportlink

5,963

6,559

Drug diversion program referrals - including young people

No. of referrals to drug diversion programs

155

186

  • ACT Policing have consistently met set minimum targets, with the exception of the proportion of eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people referred to Restorative justice (92.3 per cent in 2014-15). Set diversionary targets continue to operate and form part of ACT Policing’s service agreement with ACT Government in 2015-16.

Complete

2.3 Strengthen Galambany Court processes and outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people

  • Galambany Court (Circle Sentencing) comprises a panel of Elders and provides culturally relevant sentencing options in the ACT Magistrates Court for eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander offenders. Panel members were assisted by the Dhunlung Yarra Service to strengthen the work of the Galambany Court.
  • In 2014-15, two young people were referred to the Galambany Court, which is consistent with the previous year. This result reflects ACT Policing’s continued commitment to refer all eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to restorative justice.

Complete

2.4 Develop the After Hours Bail Support Service and better integrate the service (see also action 2.5)

  • After Hours Bail Support Service (AHBSS) assists young people who have come into contact with police, or are subject to bail order conditions. AHBSS works with ACT Policing to divert young people in police custody away from remand in detention while young people are waiting for a court appearance. In 2014-15, AHBSS responded to over 1,411 client-related matters and diverted 16 young people in police custody away from remand in detention.
  • On 1 July 2015, AHBSS transitioned into the After Hours Crisis Service extending support for children and young people who are involved in the youth justice and child protection systems. The service has extended its operating hours and continues to provide support to young people in police custody, including by diverting young people from detention.

Complete

2.5 Strengthen initiatives to assist young people to adhere to their bail conditions

(see also action 2.4)

  • After Hours Crisis Service assists child and young people who are involved in the child protection and youth justice systems. This includes working directly with young people, their support networks and ACT Policing to assist young people to adhere to their bail conditions. The service also continues to engage in ongoing training and consultation with ACT Policing to investigate alternative bail options for young people who come to the attention of ACT Policing.
  • Front Up program, delivered in partnership by the Aboriginal Justice Centre and ACT Policing, provided Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people with a way to voluntarily attend Court without involvement of the ACT Watch House. This program was operational during the life of the Blueprint, but ceased operation at the end of July 2014 with the closure of the Aboriginal Justice Centre.

Complete

2.6 Strengthen therapeutic programs for young people on community and detention orders (see also action 1.4)

  • Melaleuca Place (a trauma recovery centre) continues to provide support to children who are recovering from abuse and neglect. The centre provides trauma-informed therapeutic services to children (0-12) who are involved in the child protection system.
  • Mental Health Act 2015 will replace the Mental Health (Treatment and Care) Amendment Act 2014 and comes into effect in March 2016. The Act provides statutory options, entitlements and protections for people who use mental health services in the ACT. The Act will provide for the involuntary treatment of mental illness, where needed, and aims to ensure that people make their own treatment decisions, or participate in decisions where they have capacity. Specific clauses apply for care and support of young people.
  • The Act will align the ACT’s mental health legislation with the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities and the ACT Human Rights Act 2008. Specific forensic provisions are included to support the operation of the Secure Mental Health Unit and ensure human rights are upheld.
  • In July 2015, over twenty Notifiable Instruments under the Children and Young People Act 2008 were revised to improve the delivery of, and access to, health care services and health and wellbeing services and programs.

Work underway

2.7 Enhance diversionary accommodation options for children and young people

  • Narrabundah House Indigenous Service Residential Facility (NHISRF)continues to provide short to mid-term residential and crisis accommodation and intensive case management primarily for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young men aged 15 to 18 years who are on community-based justice orders.
  • Referrals to NHISRF come from family members, community service providers and Child and Youth Protection Services. Staff support young people to develop and implement case plans. Outcomes include restoration with family, gaining employment, addressing health issues, undertaking restorative justice processes, and social and life skills development.
  • In 2014-15, there were 14 admissions of 10 young men to NHISRF (some young men were admitted more than once). Young men exiting custody are prioritised for admission to support their transition and reintegration into their communities.

Complete

2.8 Implement supported recommendations from the ACT Drug Diversion Program Evaluation
(see also actions 1.6; 2.2)

  • Evaluation of Australian Capital Territory Drug Diversion Programs (2013), identified strengths and challenges of the ACT police and court drug diversion system, and identified opportunities for improved effectiveness. Ten recommendations were made and the majority were agreed or agreed-in-principle by ACT Government. Resulting actions include:
  • ACT Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drug Strategy 2016-2020 development. The draft strategy, led by ACT Health, underwent public consultation at the end of 2015. The strategy aims to prevent the uptake and delay the onset of harmful drug use, disrupt its production and supply, and reduce drug-related harm.
  • Alcohol and Other Drugs Diversion Program delivered in partnership by ACT Policing and ACT Health to divert alcohol and drug offenders (including young people) away from the criminal justice system to assessment and education programs, where appropriate.

Complete

2.9 Progress the development and implementation of an evaluation framework for the Youth Drug and Alcohol Court (see also actions 1.6; 2.8)

  • Youth Drug and Alcohol Court (YDAC) operates on an as needs basis, to provide an intensive and holistic diversionary option for young people with a drug or alcohol problem who are at high-risk of being sentenced to a period of imprisonment.
  • YDAC was evaluated as part of the broader Evaluation of Australian Capital Territory Drug Diversion Programs and recommendations made took into consideration the operation of the YDAC

Complete

Top

Strategy 3 - Engaging and encouraging the participation of children, young people and their families

Action

Initiative

Status

3.1 Enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to contribute to the effective development and implementation of case management plans

(see also actions 4.1; 5.1; 7.5)

  • Cultural Services Team supports Child and Youth Protection Services to deliver the best possible life outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people. The team provides cultural support to case workers, promotes cultural planning in case management, and engages Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and their families.
  • Cultural planning continues to be embedded in case management. This approach has been informed by broad consultation with government and community organisations, with a focus on supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people to develop, or retain and strengthen connection to family, community and culture. A practice guide on cultural planning assists staff to provide case management support for young people in contact with the youth justice system.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Justice Partnership 2015-18 includes actions to establish a formal agreement between youth justice and community organisations to support case management outreach and other services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.
  • Single case management continues to provide coordinated case management that focuses on a young person’s needs through the continuity of a case manager for a young person who is in Bimberi or supervised in the community.

Complete

3.2 Develop a Family Engagement Plan

  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, continues to deliver a new way of working with families who have complex needs and are involved with multiple services. The initiative delivers an intensive cross-government support package to a family that is led by a single worker and family plan. In 2014-15, 30 families (154 family members) were involved in this initiative. Expansion of the program to 50 families is anticipated in 2015-16.
  • In 2015-16, the program will be expanded to support 65 families, including 15 families experiencing mental illness through a new partnership with Capital Health Network’s Partners in Recovery Program. A training package for workers supporting children living with parents who have a mental illness has also been developed.
  • In 2014, the Community Services Directorate developed a Family Engagement Strategy to engage families and natural supports of young people who have come into contact with the youth justice system. It also aims to reduce risk factors and strengthen protective factors associated with youth offending through a framework that embeds family engagement into case management practice. Strategy implementation is supported by the development of a practice guide for staff about exploring family relationships in case planning.
  • A Family Engagement Officer continues to assist families of young people by promoting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in the day-to-day functions of Bimberi, and providing a point of contact seeking to engage and support young people in custody. The role is an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identified position that was co-designed with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Unit and members of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community.
  • Progressing Parental Engagement in the ACT project is a cross sectoral partnership between ACT Education and Training, the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth, Catholic Education, Independent Schools and Parenting Associations that provides evidence-based understanding about what parental engagement is, how best to foster it and why it matters. The project has delivered print and online resources for families, schools and communities to strengthen existing partnerships.

Complete

3.3 Positively engage children, young people and their families at Court

  • In 2015, a range of information pamphlets for young people involved in the ACT youth justice system was developed. The pamphlets provide young people and their families information to better understand and engage with processes and services associated with the Court and broader ACT youth justice system. Topics covered include things young people and their families need to know about: being on bail, going to court, court reports, case management after court, and good behaviour orders. The pamphlets are available on the Community Services Directorate website.
  • Bimberi induction DVD has been developed to support young people entering Bimberi by providing information about rights and rules, learning opportunities and ways of accessing help and support.

Work underway

3.4 Develop collaborative service approaches to support young people and families with culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds

  • Multicultural Youth Affairs Network, in 2012, was engaged by the Child, Youth and Family Support Program (CYFSP) to survey services across the ACT, to identify training or other supports needed to assist services and workers to improve services for young people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Feedback from the survey has informed the training and support needs of CYFSP services and workers to improve service delivery.
  • Case Management and Support (MPower) operational group provides intensive, flexible support for young people involved with the youth justice system through interagency collaboration and a case management approach. The group works with community organisations to provide better outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and high risk young people and their families, particularly when there are concerns about a young person’s mental health.
  • Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Youth Engagement Services are delivered to migrant and refugee young people by Companion House and the Multicultural Youth Service, through CYFSP. The services strengthen family and social relationships, address intergenerational conflict and promote engagement with mainstream services through outreach, case management and group programs. Services are also being delivered to community service providers to promote culturally competent practice across the service system.
  • Migrant and Refugee Settlement Services delivers the After School Studies (PASS) program to provide volunteer tutors to 8-25 year olds students from non-English speaking backgrounds in two locations. Students can be in primary school, high school, college, CIT or university. Students are matched with appropriate tutors based on the subjects they require assistance with, and the expertise of the tutor. These are one-to-one tutoring sessions.

Complete

3.5 Contribute to the forward planning of the new Supreme and Magistrates Court’s building design

  • The ACT Government has progressed work to redevelop the ACT Supreme and Magistrates Court buildings. The Community Services Directorate contributed to stakeholder consultations to advocate for the needs of children, young people and families when key design requirements were being developed. The project will deliver new courtrooms, jury deliberation rooms, secure jury reception and orientation area, expanded single custodial facility, single secure public entry point and counter, and best practice child and vulnerable witness facilities. Construction of the new facilities is due to commence in early 2016 with completion in early 2018.

Complete

Top

Strategy 4 - Providing intensive individualised support to children and young people

Action

Initiative

Status

4.1 Provide intensive support to children, young people and families when they come in contact with the youth justice system

(see also actions 1.5; 3.1; 5.1; 7.5)

  • Single case management continues to provide coordinated case management that focuses on a young person’s needs through the continuity of a case manager for young people involved in the youth justice system who are in Bimberi or supervised in the community. In 2014-15, 170 young people were supported under the single case management model.
  • Intensive Intervention Service works in partnership with the Child and Youth Protection Service, to transition and keep children, young people and their families out of tertiary or court mandated services. Delivered by a community service provider, this service delivers intensive assistance for significantly at-risk children young people and families through a range of case management services and group interventions, including outreach and home visiting. The service aims to achieve sustainable attitudinal and/or behavioural change in children, young people and their families and engage them with less intensive services that will meet their longer term needs.
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, supports the single case management model with standard documents and procedures for all core youth services case management activities.
  • Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS), commenced 1 July 2015, work to provide a better service response to children, young people and families requiring a care, protection or youth justice response. CYPS will deliver better client outcomes by providing a trauma-informed response that focuses on diversion, protection, restoration, transition, and permanency. This new service will improve information sharing and provide continuity of case management removing duplication and barriers to effective service delivery.
  • Murrumbidgee Education and Training Centre (METC) works in partnership with the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT) to provide a range of education and training options for young people in Bimberi. Students receive individual tutoring and participate in literacy and numeracy skills development, art, woodwork, music, computers, fitness and horticulture and the opportunity to complete their year 10 and year 12 certificates. Students can also participate in vocational certificates.
  • Giving Garden at Bimberi Youth Justice Centre. In 2014, young people in Bimberi constructed a ceremonial garden known as the ‘Giving Garden’. The ceremonial garden was designed around a Circle of Courage totem based on the principles of Belonging, Mastery, Independence and Generosity to assist young people to develop qualities to support their personal growth.
  • Melaleuca Place provides a high quality trauma-informed therapeutic program to children aged 0 to 12 years who have experienced abuse and neglect and who are, or have been, clients of Child and Youth Protection Services. The work undertaken with children is done in the context of their care and support networks. Melaleuca Place also provides trauma-specific training and education for carers and those working with children who have experienced abuse and neglect.
  • Child, Youth and Family Services Program provides funding and works closely with community organisations and key government agencies to coordinate and provide services to vulnerable children, young people and their families.

Complete

4.2 Develop effective initiatives to enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and their families to explore their own cultural identify, family history and sense of belonging

(see also actions 3.1; 4.3; 5.6)

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Youth Justice Programs and Services Coordination Committee continues to provide oversight of programs and services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and engage with the ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community to reduce the over representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people in the youth justice system.
  • Gulanga Program, a CYFSP-funded Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement Service, aims to improve the cultural competence of services and promote the access and engagement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children, young people and their families with mainstream services. The program develops tools and resources to assist services to better respond to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, provides direct consultancy support in implementing organisational change, supports Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander workers in the sector and delivers cultural awareness training for community workers.
  • ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Justice Partnership 2015-18 sets out a commitment to reduce the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the ACT justice system.This includes ensuring Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people under youth justice orders have a case plan that includes cultural care planning.
  • ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Agreement 2015-18 sets out a shared vision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples towards the development of opportunities, knowledge and skills to build an empowered, resilient and sustainable future. The central focus is on strong families, with connecting to the community and cultural identity as key areas of focus.

Complete

4.3 Develop targeted family support programs including identifying siblings of children and young people in custody to assist them

(see also actions 1.1; 3.2; 3.3)

  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, is an integrated service response for families with multiple needs. Strengthening Families is a new way of working with families who have complex needs and multiple service involvement. Families are linked with a lead worker who works with them to access tailored supports to achieve their goals.
  • Intensive Intervention Service delivers intensive assistance for significantly at-risk children young people and families through a range of case management services and group interventions, including outreach and home visiting.
  • Family Engagement Strategy, developed in 2014, engages families and natural supports of young people who have come into contact with the youth justice system.
  • Family Engagement Officer assists families of young people, to promote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander perspectives in the day-to-day functions of Bimberi, and to provide a point of contact and communication for services seeking to engage and support young people in custody.

Complete

4.4 Enhance the ACT Youth Commitment to support young people through key life transition points (see also actions 1.1; 5.3; 5.5)

  • ACT Youth Commitment ‘Flexible Learning Options’ support and engage young people in quality vocational learning to assist young people to reach their learning goals. Partnerships are encouraged between schools, community groups, Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) and business and industry. Future actions planned include:
    • Expanding the delivery of Flexible Learning Options for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students.
    • Conducting research to identify barriers to accessing and successfully completing training by young people facing disadvantage.
    • Seeking advice from an expert panel on best practice responses to students with complex needs and challenging behaviours in ACT schools.

Complete

Top

Strategy 5 - Connecting and reintegrating children and young people into a home and community through effective throughcare

Action

Initiative

Status

5.1 Strengthen the existing throughcare model and enhance the youth justice single case management model

(see also actions 3.1; 4.1; 4.2; 4.4; 5.1; 7.5)

  • Bendora Through Care Unit continues to assist young people to transition from the Bimberi Youth Justice Centre. Young people in Bendora may attend work placements or recreation activities in the community as part of the transition process. Young people build life skills including doing laundry and preparing and cooking meals. Nutrition Australia delivers ‘Project Dinnertime’ as part of the ACT Government’s Healthy Weight Initiative to improve young people’s cooking skills and knowledge.
  • Single case management model provides coordinated case management that focuses on the needs of young people with continuity of a case manager for young people in Bimberi or supervised in the community. The model has been embedded across Youth Services and is central to the Youth Services Integrated Management System.
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, supports the single case management model with standard documents and procedures for all core youth services case management activities.
  • Murrumbidgee Education and Training Centre (MTEC) provides education and skills development at Bimberi including training and vocational opportunities to learn new skills and knowledge to help young people reintegrate into the community.
  • Youth Transitioning from Care Program, begun 1 July 2014, supports young people aged 16 - 18 years to build living skills and promote independence. The program is for young people who are in out of home care (and who may also be involved with youth justice, including in Bimberi) who are at risk of an unsuccessful transition to independence.

Complete

5.2 Develop a formal process for coordination of youth justice case management and youth homelessness services

(see also action 2.7)

  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, outlines procedures for all core youth services case management activities. Case managerssupport young people on justice orders who are experiencing (or at risk of) homelessness to access short, medium and long term accommodation options. Support is delivered through:
    • First Point Accommodation Service, a single point of access to the ACT’s network of over 40 homelessness services, supports and information. First Point is jointly funded by the ACT and Australian Governments and provides the ACT Government with data and information on young people and their experience of housing and homelessness in the ACT.
    • ACT Youth Housing and Homelessness Services, which provide a range of services across prevention, early intervention crisis, stabilisation and maintenance. These services provide a range of accommodation options and other interventions that support young people to transition to independent housing, employment or education.
    • Housing ACT Youth Housing Program, which supports young people (16 to 25 years) who are transitioning from the youth justice and care and protection systems, or homelessness services. The program assists young people to sustain a long term tenancy and to engage with education, employment and the community. Three youth housing managers work with young people from their initial contact with Housing ACT, through the application and allocation process and on to tenancy management. In 2014-15, 160 youth tenancies were managed under this program.
  • Narrabundah House Indigenous Service Residential Facility (NHISRF) continues to provide short to mid-term residential and crisis accommodation and intensive case management primarily for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young men aged 15 to 18 years who are on community-based justice orders.

Complete

5.3 Develop flexible learning options as determined by the Student Engagement Framework

(see also action 4.4)

  • Flexible Learning Options (FLOs)provide vocational learning opportunities for Year 9 to 12 students who are experiencing difficulty in a classroom or traditional school setting. FLOs tailor learning by providing access to extra-curricular activities, targeted career advice, mentoring and work experience. FLOs help young people build confidence and networks to improve employment prospects.
  • In 2014, FLOs provided opportunities for 458 students who successfully obtained a skill set or nationally recognised vocational qualification, participated in additional work experience, enrolled in further education or training, or engaged in an apprenticeship.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Job Ready Program funds nationally recognised training in work preparation and community services. The program is designed to prepare Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for employment or further training opportunities.
  • Engaging Schools Framework ensures that every ACT public school has access to a qualified and registered psychologist who is able to make assessments of the mental health status of students and provide support or refer students to external support agencies. This includes referrals to General Practitioners, Canberra Adolescent Mental Health Service and Headspace. Staff are also supported to manage their approach to assisting students with mental health.

Complete

5.4 Explore and develop conditional release options

(see also actions 5.1; 5.3)

  • Bendora Through Care Unit continues to assist young people to transition fromthe Bimberi Youth Justice Centre. Young people in Bendora may attend work placements or recreation activities in the community as part of the transition process.
  • Policy work onconditional release optionswas undertaken. Issues considered included administrative and legal mechanisms, monitoring of children or young people exiting detention and support for the transition of children and young people from a custodial setting to the community.

Complete

5.5 Provide structured engagement opportunities for businesses, as prospective employers, to become involved with young people in detention

(see also actions 4.4; 5.3)

  • Murrumbidgee Education and Training Centre (METC)engages external trainers to deliver a range of programs including a Barista course and Certificate in Business. These courses are supported by training opportunities in interview skills, résumé preparation and industry ready courses. Young people are provided opportunities to engage in offsite work experience to build their practical and theoretical skills.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Job Ready Program funds nationally recognised training in work preparation and community services. The program is designed to prepare Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples for employment or further training opportunities.

Complete

5.6 Develop formal partnerships with the community sector to flexibly coordinate services for children and young people

(see also actions 1.1; 1.5; 3.1)

  • West Belconnen Local Services Network (the Network), a ‘Better Services’ initiative, is a new way of providing services relating to health and wellbeing, education, family support, housing and justice so that they meet the needs of people in the local area. The Network Leadership Group is guiding the development of the Network in West Belconnen. This group has membership from Belconnen Community Service, UnitingCare Kippax, the National Health Cooperative, Inanna, Red Cross and ACT Government Directorates of Community Services, Health, Education and Training. The Network has progressed work to identify key areas of focus including employment pathways for young people.
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Justice Partnership 2015-18 includes actions to establish a formal agreement between youth justice and community organisations to support case management outreach and other services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.
  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20) aims to improve outcomes for vulnerable children, young people and their families who have contact with the child protection and out of home care systems. Under the strategy, new reforms are taking place to build partnerships with community agencies and transfer areas of service delivery to the community sector to strengthening high-risk families, building a continuum of care for children and young people, and delivering a therapeutic trauma-informed care system. This shift in focus will improve Child and Youth Protection Services’ capacity to prevent children and young people from entering care or the youth justice system.

Complete

Top

Strategy 6 - Creating an integrated whole of government and community system to support children and young people

Action

Initiative

Status

6.1 Develop and implement a multi-agency statutory mechanism for shared accountability and timely response to improve outcomes for at risk young people

  • Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS), established in 2015, combines the functions of care and protection and youth justice services to deliver a single statutory service focused on a trauma-informed response to diversion, protection, restoration and permanency for children and young people. The service will continue to work with its cross-government and community partners to deliver the priorities of A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20).
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, outlines procedures for all core youth services case management activities. As part of this process, formal procedures were established to guide staff and better coordinate the transfer of services between youth justice and adult corrections.
  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20) has seen the commencement of legislative reforms to strengthen existing child protection and out of home care services for children and young people. Such legislative reforms aim to give effect to the Strategy, a core component of which is strengthening accountability and ensuring a high-functioning care system in the best interests of children and young people.
  • ACT Children and Young People's Commitment 2015 - 2025 sets a whole-of-government and whole-of-community commitment to promote the rights of children and young people and provide guidance to the Canberra community on how to assist children and young people to reach their potential, participate in decision making, make a contribution, and share the benefits of our community.
  • National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) assists young people with disability in the ACT to participate in the community, and access education, training and employment. The NDIS funds individualised support for young people with disability providing choice and control and a lifetime approach to meeting a young person’s support needs.
  • INVOLVE - Canberra Disability Commitment (INVOLVE) is the ACT Government's commitment to deliver a localised response to the National Disability Strategy 2010-20. INVOLVE provides a framework to promote and achieve positive social and economic outcomes for people with disability through the collaborative action of government, business and community from June 2015 to December 2017. In 2016-17 the priorities will be justice, health and accessible communities.

Substantially Complete

6.2 Develop across government early intervention strategies

(see also actions 1.3; 1.5; 4.1; 5.1; 6.2; 7.7)

  • ACT Prevention of Violence Against Women and Children Strategy 2011-17 is the ACT Government’s commitment to end violence against women and children. Now under its Second Implementation Plan, a key priority of the Strategy is supporting innovative services and joined up service systems, by properly integrating the service delivery system.
  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20)aims to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and young people and their families who have contact with the child protection and out of home care systems. An aim of the Strategy is to create a therapeutic and
    trauma-informed system, extend the continuum of care to care leavers up to the age of 21 years and strengthen high risk families.
  • ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Agreement 2015-18 sets out a shared vision for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples towards the development of opportunities, knowledge and skills to build an empowered, resilient and sustainable future. The central focus is on strong families, with connecting to the community and cultural identity as key areas of focus.
  • ACT Property Crime Reduction Strategy 2012-2015 is a whole-of-government strategy developed to provide a safer environment for young people and the ACT community. The strategy is focused on reducing incidences of burglary and motor vehicle theft. A key objective is to engage the disengaged through early intervention. Actions under this objective are focused on diverting young property crime offenders from the justice system and keeping ‘at risk’ youth engaged in education, training and employment.
  • ACT Alcohol, Tobacco and Other Drugs Strategy 2010-2014 delivered a range of drug and alcohol support initiatives for young people. A new Strategy (2016-2020) is currently being developed. The new strategy will aim to prevent the uptake and delay the onset of harmful drug use, disrupt its production and supply, and reduce drug-related harms - including through diversionary measures.
  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, continues to deliver a new way of working with families who have complex needs and are involved with multiple services. The initiative delivers an intensive cross-government support package to a family that is led by a single worker and family plan. In 2014-15, 30 families (154 family members) were involved in this initiative. Expansion of the program to 50 families is anticipated in 2015-16.
  • Child, Youth and Family Gateway (the Gateway) provides an initial assessment and referral service under the CYFSP. The Gateway provides a single point of contact for the ACT community. Children, young people and families can access information, receive initial support, complete an initial needs assessment and engage with a service. Reportable outcome measures have been implemented to provide improved referral mechanisms for children, young people and families.

Complete

6.3 Better coordinate youth justice and adult corrections services

(see also action 1.3)

  • Youth Justice and Corrective Services Coordination Committee (ceased in 2015) improved the coordination of youth justice and adult corrections services. Linkages between youth justice and community corrections were strengthened, including in relation to establishing procedures for transferring young adults from youth justice to community-based supervision with adult corrective services.
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, outlines procedures for all core youth services case management activities. As part of this process, formal procedures were established to guide staff and better coordinate the transfer of services between youth justice and adult corrections.

Complete

6.4 Better coordinate youth justice and police services

(see also actions 2.2; 2.4; 2.5)

  • After Hours Crisis Service (formerly the After Hours Bail Support Service) works together with ACT Policing to support young people who have come into contact with police, or are subject to bail order conditions. The services work collaboratively to divert young people in police custody away from short-term remand in detention while they are awaiting their court appearance.
  • ACT Watch House provides a charging and custodial facility operating 24 hours a day. Watch House staff notify the After Hours Crisis Service when a young person on bail arrives at the Watch House after hours. After Hours Crisis Service staff arrange accommodation and other support services for the young person, as needed. After Hours Crisis Service staff deliver training to new recruits within ACT Policing about the service.

Complete

6.5 Develop a performance and evaluation framework for the Blueprint, including the ability to evaluate programs and services

  • A performance and evaluation framework has been developed in partnership with the Australian Institute of Criminology and will ensure that a common evaluation process is used across the 10 year lifespan of the Blueprint. An evaluation of the first three years of the Blueprint for Youth Justice in the ACT 2012-22 will be undertaken in 2016.

Complete

6.6 Create or strengthen existing information systems to support a whole-of-government approach to information sharing

(see also actions 7.2; 7.3; 7.4)

  • Bimberi Knowledge Portal allows Child and Youth Protection Services staff to access all relevant policies, procedures, guidelines and forms which ensure consistency in undertaking their roles.
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, completed in 2014-15, provides standard documentation and processes for all core youth services case management activities. A number of system improvements were undertaken as part of this project, including the integration and utilisation of the Youth Justice Support and Intervention Framework and enhanced cultural support practices into case management.
  • Information Sharing Protocols have been developed for ‘Better Services’ Initiatives to ensure appropriate and timely sharing of personal information to support integrated service responses. The protocols will be tested throughout the ‘Better Services’ initiatives and are being considered for implementation across Human Services Directorates.
  • ‘Better Services’ website (www.betterservices.act.gov.au) is being developed over time to support self-help for individuals, families and services. This work includes:
    • Information and latest news on the ‘Better Services’ reforms (currently available);
    • Guidelines and tools for service providers to support sharing of information on how to embed innovative and effective service design (coming soon);
    • An online ‘Information Portal’ to enable individuals and families to find the services and supports they need (anticipate delivery in mid 2016); and
    • An online ‘Information Profile’ to empower individuals and families to record and share their personal stories, circumstances, needs and family plans (anticipate delivery in late 2016).

Complete

Top

Strategy 7 - Building a strong and smart workforce

Action

Initiative

Status

7.1 Build on the workforce development and reform strategy

(see also actions 7.2; 7.3; 7.4; 7.5; 7.7; 7.8)

  • Workforce Development Strategy supports the Community Services Directorate’s strategic goal to develop a leading organisation. Strategic planning for human resources, streamlining of recruitment processes, strengthening of reward and recognition initiatives, and regular monitoring and review of Individual Performance Management Plans all contribute to a workforce that is appropriately skilled and managed.
  • During 2014-15, multiple principal and senior practitioner positions were recruited to support the development of clinical career pathways in Child and Youth Protection Services. The positions were designed to assist the retention of quality staff, place value on practice, and provide development and career opportunities for staff who wish to remain in direct service delivery positions but seek promotion within the organisation. These positions work across care and protection and youth justice to:
    • support caseworkers;
    • role model best practice;
    • provide live supervision for staff;
    • mentor staff; and
    • reinforce quality practice.

Complete

7.2 Enhance cultural awareness and competence training (see also action 3.1)

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Engagement Service promotes the development of tools and resources to assist services to adapt their organisation to better respond to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Direct consultancy support, delivery of training and cultural awareness workshops are available to services funded by the Child, Youth and Family Services Program (CYFSP) and National Affordable Housing Agreement.
  • ACT Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Agreement 2015-18 incorporates a statement of commitment to reconciliation and the wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. This includes a commitment to recognise the importance of local knowledge, expertise and contributions of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, services and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body in meeting the diverse needs of the community.
  • Cultural Services Team has been established to support Child and Youth Protection Services to deliver the best possible life outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people. The team provides cultural support to case workers, promotes cultural planning in case management, and engages Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people and their families.
  • Cultural Support for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children in Care, commenced in November 2014, is a trial of independent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural advisors within the care and protection system. Four community members were recruited to a cultural advisors panel and undertook training in the role. In June 2015, the model was reviewed and system improvements identified during a workshop attended by the cultural advisors and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elected Body.
  • Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System, introduced in 2014-15, outlines procedures for all core youth services case management activities. As part of this process, formal practice guidelines were established to guide staff in cultural planning during case plan development with young people on justice orders.
  • Child and Family Centres continue to deliver direct services and programs to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and families and to partner with relevant government and community organisations to connect families to responsive services in order to improve outcomes.

Complete

7.3 Provide staff with training and professional development in trauma and its impact on children and young people

(see also actions 7.5; 7.7)

  • Melaleuca Place, opened in 2014, provides training and professional development opportunities that assist staff to develop trauma-informed practices to better support young people whose lives have been impacted by abuse and neglect or family violence.
  • Trauma-informed practice training is provided to Community Services Directorate staff who work with children and young people across the ACT. Training has included the delivery of ‘Working with Indigenous children and families at risk’, ‘Mad, Bad or Sad? A Pathway to Healing’and delivery of 2014 Trauma Recovery Centre Symposium.
  • Graduate Certificate in Developmental Trauma, commenced in 2014 by the Australian Childhood Foundation. In its first round, 19 professionals from across the ACT took up this opportunity to further develop skills and understanding in responding to trauma related issues.
  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20) received an additional $16 million in funding in 2015-16. From July 2015, training in understanding therapeutic trauma-informed care is being rolled out to carers, government and non-government staff who work with vulnerable children and young people.
  • ACT Prevention of Violence Against Women and Children Strategy 2011-2017 is the ACT Government’s commitment to end violence against women and children. Under its Second Implementation Plan 2015-2017, all
    ACT Government Directorates provide training to frontline staff to ensure they respond appropriately to domestic violence and sexual assault.

Complete

7.4 Develop and implement training plans for staff in youth justice services

(see also action 7.3)

  • Bimberi Annual Training Plan ensures workforce capability requirements for staff in a youth justice setting are met and identifies current and future training needs. The training plan continues to be updated as required. Individual Performance Management Plans assist with identifying further and individual training needs.
  • Induction and orientation at Bimberi is a seven-week program that provides new staff with entry level knowledge and skills required to perform their duties. The program is administered and managed in partnership with the Community Services Directorate’s Learning and Community Education unit. The program is supplemented by Bimberi workplace learning involving on the job training and development through ‘buddy shifts’.
  • Forensic Mental Health Services (ACT Health) continues to provide mental health awareness and education training to Bimberi youth workers as part of their induction training.
  • Bimberi Knowledge Portal, Child and Youth Protection Services allows staff working with young people in a youth justice context to access standardised, best practice policies, procedures and guidelines for their work with young people. The knowledge portal sits alongside the Youth Services Case Management Integrated Management System. This Integrated Management System, completed in 2014-15, provides standard documentation and processes for all core youth services case management activities.

Complete

7.5 Partner with the community sector in providing and delivering training

(see also actions 7.3; 7.8)

  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, continues to deliver a new way of working with families who have complex needs and are involved with multiple services. A central component of Strengthening Families is the Lead Worker Model where one officer acts as the sole point of contact for a family for their needs across different services. Under the initiative, families identify the ‘lead worker’ (from government or community) who are trained in the delivery of co-designed family led practice. Currently, the initiative has the capacity to provide training for up to 45 lead workers.
  • ACT Prevention of Violence Against Women and Children Strategy 2011-2017 is the ACT Government’s commitment to end violence against women and children. Under the Strategy, the ACT Government has facilitated joint training initiatives with community sector partners to improve awareness of domestic violence related issues, e.g. technology safety training.
  • Training and vocational programs for young people in custody. Community Services and Education and Training Directorates have worked in partnership to engage young people in Bimberi in courses to improve their training and vocational experience. External trainers are employed to deliver a range of programs such as the Barista Course and Certificate in Business. Young people are also engaged in offsite work experience, where appropriate, to build their practical skills and promote community reintegration.
  • A Step Up for Our Kids (Out of Home Care Strategy 2015-20) received an additional $16 million in funding in 2015-16. From July 2015, training in understanding therapeutic trauma-informed care is being rolled out to carers, government and non-government staff who work with vulnerable children and young people. This is in addition to the trauma-specific training and education for carers and those working with children who have experienced abuse and neglect already being provided by Melaleuca Place and the broader Community Services Directorate.

Complete

7.6 Actively recruit
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in youth justice services (see also actions 1.5; 3.2)

  • Work to attract and retain staff who identify as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander in areas related to youth justice has been ongoing throughout the life of the Blueprint. Several positions that are identified or require specialist cultural knowledge about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community and culture have been established during this period. This includes the establishment of a Family Engagement Officer and a cultural services team of up to six staff to guide practice.
  • ACT Public Service 2016 Graduate Program has 19 identified positions to support the placement of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and people living with disability to attract and re-train Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees.
  • Indigenous Employment Pathways Program (ACT Government) focuses on coordinating traineeships, cadetships and school-based work experience programs for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
  • In June 2015, 3.9% of Community Services Directorate staff identified as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander. This is an increase from 2.7% (June 2012) when the Blueprint commenced.

Complete

7.7 Implement core skills building for care and protection workers to more effectively respond to children and young people who are at greater risk of youth justice involvement

(see also actions 7.3; 7.5; 7.7)

  • Child and Youth Protection Services (CYPS), commenced 1 July 2015, work to provide a better service response to children, young people and families requiring a care, protection or youth justice response. This new service will improve information sharing and continuity of case management across the child protection and youth justice areas. It will also allow earlier identification and support to be offered to families for children and young people who are at risk of entering the youth justice system.
  • Strengthening Families, a ‘Better Services’ initiative, continues to deliver a new way of working with families who have multiple or complex needs. The service adopts a ‘Lead Worker Model’ by training staff to deliver effective
    co-designed support to families where there is multiple service engagement.
  • Melaleuca Place, opened in 2014, provides training and professional development opportunities that assist staff to develop trauma-informed practices to better support young people whose lives have been impacted by abuse and neglect or family violence.

Complete

7.8 Host a conference biennially to showcase best practice and innovative approaches in youth justice (see also action 7.5)

  • The inaugural Australasian Youth Justice Conference, Changing Trajectories of Offending and Reoffending, was held in 2013 in Canberra. The Australian Juvenile Justice Administrators (AJJA) has commenced work to identify a suitable partner to deliver a second youth justice conference for young people, practitioners, non-government and government organisations, and youth justice academics. The second conference will be held in 2016 in Brisbane. The theme for the conference will be based on the Principles of Youth Justice in Australia that were endorsed by all states and territories and released in October 2014.

Complete

Back to Annual Report Home page

Top