Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk.

‘Everyone needs to do better’: Premier’s Child Safety pledge

MORE vulnerable children will be permanently taken from irresponsible parents and adopted out, after Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced she will accept all recommendations from Mason Jett Lee's coronial inquest.

Responding to sweeping policy changes to the child safety department announced by Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington in The Courier-Mail today, the Premier also promised to work with the LNP to reform the system, which she said "needs to do better".

"Everyone needs to do better," she said.

"Governments needs to do better, and the community needs to do better."

She said the Child Safety Department also "needs to do better" and "that is why we need a new model".

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk promises to make changes to the Child Safety Department. Picture: Jono Searle
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk promises to make changes to the Child Safety Department. Picture: Jono Searle

"Today what I say to the Leader of the Opposition is my government is willing to work with you," she said.

"What I am suggesting today is a new approach to child safety in this state.

"What I am saying to the Leader of the Opposition today is, I'm asking yourselves to work with my government and let's get it right."

Ms Palaszczuk said more police did need to work in child safety - a move proposed by Ms Frecklington.

And more health professionals and mental health specialists needed to work there too, she said.

Tabling the government's response to the recommendations that came from Mason's coronial inquest, the Premier singled out the recommendation to more frequently use adoption.

"I think we need to absolutely, as a government and a community, look at this," she said.

"So my commitment today to the people of Queensland is that we will work with the stakeholders to bring about legislation to this House and I ask the Opposition to be part of that.

"We also need more foster carers as well as more and more children are presenting to the Department of Child Safety and the work is so complex.

"We also need to have more foster carers, good people of Queensland out there, good families that will also work with the department."

Ms Palaszczuk said huge numbers of parents known by child safety were using drugs and the department was already drug testing them.

Meanwhile, opposition child safety spokeswoman Ros Bates named two child safety workers she said had been involved in the Mason Lee case, and had been subsequently promoted.

But the question was not answered as it was ruled out of order by Speaker Curtis Pitt.

The coroner's report into Mason's case found 21 department staff had comprehensively failed to protect the neglected and abused toddler, who died from traumatic injuries caused by his step father.


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