After the Intervention: The ongoing challenge of ensuring the safety and wellbeing of vulnerable children in the Northern Territory Dr Howard Bath

Dr Howard Bath

Child Family Community Australia webinar Thursday 21 November 2013

View presentation slides (PDF 229 KB) | Read slide outline | Listen to the presentation audio (MP3 16.70 MB) | Read transcript

Abstract

This CFCA seminar will explore issues and challenges relating to the safety and wellbeing of Aboriginal children.

Following a brief review of the circumstances leading up to and during the Intervention, the presentation will review the available data on safety and wellbeing, starting with the vexed issue of the sexual abuse of Aboriginal children - the ostensible trigger for the Intervention. Data on the current safety and wellbeing of women and children across the NT will be presented along with a discussion of the services and supports that are available to help address these needs.

The seminar will include discussion on the need for partnership and collaboration between mainstream services and targeted Aboriginal service providers and the prioritisation of capacity-building ventures. It will conclude with a call for a more evidence-informed approach to service delivery in the NT, including sound needs assessments, service designs that are research-based and culturally congruent, and funding that allows for ongoing impact evaluations.

About the presenter

Dr Howard Bath has been the NT Childrens Commissioner since June 2008. In this role he has a particular focus on the safety and wellbeing of vulnerable children and families, a majority of whom are Aboriginal and living in town camps or very remote communities. In 2010 he was co-chair of an Inquiry into the child protection system in the NT which produced the Growing them Strong, Together report.

Howard has a long history as a practicing Clinical Psychologist, agency director, trainer and researcher in child and family services with a particular interest in services for children and young people with high needs in the child protection and juvenile justice systems.

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